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What's on your lock screen?
Up until today the lock screen on your iPhone was a secure layer between your device and the world. It retains that function in iOS 10 but also gets a little softer on what’s allowed to show up without using your PIN or fingerprint.
You can now see the widgets view by swiping right, open the camera by swiping left, and review all your notifications by swiping down. All those views are customizable too, which gives the lock screen a whole new level of functionality.
Siri gets serious
iOS 10 is opening up the Siri API to third-party apps, which is a great new feature for those who want to do more than have their Google searches misunderstood. Now you can interact directly with apps: order a pizza, request an Uber … the sky’s the limit!
Messaging gets an overhaul
There are a bunch of new features in the Messaging app. You can handwrite notes, there are new third-party emoji and sticker keyboard plugins, and auto correct will even suggest emojis to replace words.
Relive your photo memories without Facebook
The Photos app now sports a possibly Facebook-inspired memories feature. Tapping on one of the dates it shows will bring up a full roll of photos you took that day, and the app will even stitch them together in a short video. Great for parties, weddings, and other events that could use a photostream!
Widgets that work for you
Pulling down from the top of the screen used to open the Today screen, but that’s a thing of yesterday. Now pulling down opens the widget screen: it looks and acts a lot like Today but is far more customizable.
Widgets can be added, removed, and reordered so you get the exact view you want. It makes the widget screen a bit more like Android’s Google Now cards–far more practical than the old Today view.
3D Touch you might actually use
One of the most underwhelming features of the iPhone 6S was 3D touch. It doesn’t have much practical use, it’s easy to forget about, and sometimes it just gets in the way.
The iPhone 7 is trying to overcome some of the disappointment that is 3D touch with a whole bunch of new features. Whether or not they’ll be truly useful remains to be seen, but here’s hoping iOS 10 makes pressure sensitive screens a bit more practical.
Smartphone, meet smart home
Apple has added the Home app to control IoT devices right from your smartphone. Any device that is HomeKit enabled can be connected, and the app even allows you to set up a 4th-generation Apple TV as a hub for controlling devices while you’re away from home.
An all-new Music app
The whole Music app has been redesigned, and not necessarily for the better. Album art is larger, and all the different parts of your library (playlists, artists, albums, etc.) are dumped in one tab.
It’s obvious that Apple is pushing users toward the Apple Music subscription features: the app simply isn’t as friendly as a basic media player anymore.
You can finally delete stock apps
If you’re like me there’s probably at least one app folder on your home screen that’s filled with pre-installed junk you don’t use. Apple seems to have realized that not everyone wants the Home, Stocks, iMovie, Tips, Apple Store, Find Friends, or other questionably useful apps clogging up their devices, so now you can delete them.
Granted, if you never use those apps they won’t be taking up much more than screen real estate, but it’s nice to get rid of clutter once in awhile.