Along with Mac OS X El Capitain, Apple today unveiled iOS9 at the company’s annual WWDC event, featuring a new intelligent search assistant, greater speed and security. Siri will be smarter and can set up reminders, but now there’s the even smarter Proactive feature. It’s a new assistant that will learn your behaviors and predict what you’re interested in doing with your phone. For example, Proactive will monitor what you typically listen to in a certain location or at a particular time of day, so that when you plug in headphones at the gym or get in your car in the morning, iOS9 will automatically display playback controls for your preferred app.
In terms of apps, a revised Maps will feature metropolitan transit systems and schedules, with subway station entrances and exits precisely mapped to outline every step of your trip. Look also for better search functionality and a tie-in to Apple Pay. An entirely new News app takes over for Newstand, pulling content from publishers like The New York Times, ESPN, Conde Nast and more, laid out in an immersive design reminiscent of print with the interactivity of digital media.
Addressing another complaint from users, iOS9 will now support multitasking on iPad. Slide Over will let you swipe a secondary app over onto your screen from the right side while keeping the primary app open; Picture-In-Picture keeps a video or Facetime window playing in the corner of the screen while you work in a different app; and SplitView bisects the screen, allowing users to work on two apps side-by-side at once.
Increased security, now with two-factor authentication for your ID and stronger end-to-end encryption, will help fend off hackers. The smarter iOS9 means will store more information about you — and how you use your device — meaning security is an even bigger priority.
As a response to the troubles that users experienced transitioning to iOS8, which required 4.6 gigabytes of space, its successor will only require 1.3 GBs. iOS 9 will be available as a free upgrade this fall, and no devices will be dropped from this release.