iOS 9 arrives today with proactive features and iPad multitasking

iPhone and iPad owners, rejoice: a new iOS version arrives today. iOS 9 will begin rolling out to a wide range of devices starting at 10 AM PT, according to a tweet on the semi-official Apple Support Twitter account. Apple had previously announced that iOS 9 would be released today during its fall event last week.

We first learned of what was to come in iOS 9 back at WWDC. Here's a brief recap. Apple has added proactive features to the OS that track how you use your device, which are then used to cue up the right information, apps, or entertainment at the right time and place. Siri also gets more intelligent: developers can integrate the virtual assistant into their apps to provide broader, more informative search results. All of these features are similar to Google's Now service, but they're welcome additions for iOS users.

The biggest changes in iOS 9 are for the biggest iOS devices: iPads. Compatible iPads gain up to three multitasking views. The first, called Slide Over, allows apps like Twitter or Mail to be pulled in from the side of the screen for a quick tweet or reply. Once that task is complete, that app can be dismissed, and Slide Over returns users to their previous app.

Picture-in-picture view does exactly what it says: videos and FaceTime calls run in a thumbnailed window at the corner of the screen. Finally, iPad Air 2s and iPad Pros running iOS 9 take multitasking a step further with a split-screen view that lets two apps run side-by-side.

As with any iOS update, Apple has also made a vast swath of minor tweaks and changes that are supposed to improve performance, stretch battery life, and enhance security. iOS 9 is compatible with iPhones from the nearly four-year-old iPhone 4S forward, and iPads from the iPad 2 onward (although many features will be disabled on those older devices—check out Ars Technica's in-depth review for details).

Comments closed
    • cynan
    • 7 years ago

    The only reason this has evolved is because the vast majority of customers were OK with fooling themselves that they were getting some sort of a deal with the contract hardware business model. Without this mentality, mobile providers would never have been able to get away with said pricing practises in the first place. It’s dishonest, and while many might be fine with it, ultimately anti-consumer.

    • BobbinThreadbare
    • 7 years ago

    You mean people would rather get the full value of their contacts since until recently no US carriers gave a discount if you didn’t get your hardware subsidized.

    • Price0331
    • 7 years ago

    The only reason it is secure is because almost nobody uses it…

    • Deanjo
    • 7 years ago

    Emacs is AI!

    [url<]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ELIZA[/url<]

    • Meadows
    • 7 years ago

    In that case, you’re correct. At first I thought it was some sort of pre-caching like what browsers do nowadays.

    • sweatshopking
    • 7 years ago

    +1

    • chuckula
    • 7 years ago

    You aren’t a fan of the preposition “up” after cue?
    Because that’s an accurate use of the word cue in that context.
    It shouldn’t be “queue” because he is talking about making information, apps, and entertainment appear at the right time and place as if on [i<]cue[/i<] and not an ordering of items as in a [i<]queue[/i<].

    • cynan
    • 7 years ago

    I suspect that’s a lot to do with Samsung being more inclined to give large mobile providers hardware deals than Google. And we all know how much people love to pay more in the long run with their contract-subsidized devices. The have now and buy later mentality. Yay.

    • chuckula
    • 7 years ago

    Yes, but emacs is!

    • Deanjo
    • 7 years ago

    WORD PERFECT IS NOT AN OS!!! NEITHER IS WORD PRESS!!!!

    • Meadows
    • 7 years ago

    I’m more bothered by the use of “cue up” in that sentence.

    • sweatshopking
    • 7 years ago

    WP has support for Android and iOS apps coming (android support already leaked) and is the most secure of any of the mobile operating systems. I don’t love the windows 10 UI, as it’s too much like android and iOS, but it’s a solid OS.

    • Chrispy_
    • 7 years ago

    Yeah, this upgrade will be good for my family iPads but Google Now is just miles ahead now.

    Apple’s biggest disadvantage is that Google owns the web, and Apple’s product stack is increasingly just tools to connect with the web.

    • Nevermind
    • 7 years ago

    I don’t know how to respond.. er, my condolences?

    • GrimDanfango
    • 7 years ago

    I don’t think there’s a problem so long as they judgementally enclose said term in quotation marks:
    ‘blah blah blah “Slide Over” blah’

    – see, maintains branding, and conveys a trace amount of snark at the same time! 🙂

    • The Egg
    • 7 years ago

    I’d be coming from Windows Phone

    • brucethemoose
    • 7 years ago

    [quote<] supposed to improve performance, stretch battery life, and enhance security. [/quote<] Translation: - Make old devices slower - Reduce battery life/increase wear - Break jailbreaks

    • Bomber
    • 7 years ago

    But not as good as Google Now.

    • GrimDanfango
    • 7 years ago

    It is how Android releases work. The problem is that it’s not how 99% of Android-based OEMs work.
    Alas, the world voted overwhelmingly for Samsung rather than Nexus devices… the fools.

    • Nevermind
    • 7 years ago

    You can always buy android products instead. Don’t let OS security drain your battery, right?

    • Andrew Lauritzen
    • 7 years ago

    Almost certainly the analysis happens in the cloud, not on your local device. While this rightly raises some privacy concerns (although they pretty much have all this data anyways), it’s really not very different from standard push notifications in terms of how it affects the device itself.

    • tanker27
    • 7 years ago

    Siri has always had the ability to be disabled.

    • DancinJack
    • 7 years ago

    I do too, but then you wouldn’t get to decide between the hundreds of devices you get to choose from.

    • trackerben
    • 7 years ago

    We’re lucky if we get fractional update or two for droids not overseen by Google. Then there’s the frequent bugs/exploits even with the latest 5.x versions [url<]http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-34268050#sa-ns_mchannel=rss&ns_source=PublicRSS20-sa[/url<]

    • The Egg
    • 7 years ago

    I’ll be interested to see if Siri and the “proactive features” can be disabled. There’s got to be some processor overhead (i.e., battery use) not to mention that I have no interest in that stuff to begin with.

    • DPete27
    • 7 years ago

    [quote<]proactive features to the OS that track how you use your device, which are then used to cue up the right information, apps, or entertainment at the right time and place.[/quote<] AKA: Google Now

    • adampk17
    • 7 years ago

    /sigh

    I wish this was how Android releases worked.

    • ludi
    • 7 years ago

    I ALSO DISLIKE EXCESSIVE CAPITALIZATION.

    • 223 Fan
    • 7 years ago

    I think you forgot the </irony> tag.

    • sweatshopking
    • 7 years ago

    Guize, don’t capitalize the stupid moronic branding for stuff that’s been on the market for ages. Slide Over? please.

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