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New Features

Apple's iOS 11: Best New Features, Some Annoyances

Two weeks in, there's plenty to like about the new iOS version
Apple's Software
June 26, 2017

The new features coming for iPhone and iPad with iOS 11 are mostly good and should be well received. 

Apple has now released two developer betas for iOS 11. With the first public beta almost certainly just days away from release, let’s look at what’s great and not so great about the new OS.

Groundbreaking changes for iPad

Groundbreaking changes for iPad

June 2017 could be the month Apple made the iPad relevant again. On June 5, the company introduced two new iPad Pros alongside an iOS update that mostly focuses on its tablet lineup for the first time.

Multitasking plays a key role in iOS 11. This includes the ability to open a second app right from the Dock, while the redesigned App Switcher makes going back and forth between apps a breathless, enjoyable experience.

The QuickType Keyboard is also helpful. Now, letters, numbers, symbols, and punctuation marks are available on the same keyboard, just like on physical keyboards. This change makes typing faster and less error-prone.

Muted Love for iPhone -- for now

Muted Love for iPhone -- for now

There’s a lot of new stuff to see in iOS 11 for iPhone, including new Maps, Livelier Photos, and an improved Lock Screen. However, the biggest changes Apple has planned for iPhone are probably being kept for the upcoming arrival of the “iPhone 8” this fall.

This Year’s Most Controversial Changes

This Year’s Most Controversial Changes

The new App Store app is probably going to cause Apple some headaches when it’s released to the public this fall. The revamp is very enjoyable on iPad; much less so on iPhone.

As I mentioned soon after iOS 11 was announced, the redesign is probably going to make it harder to find new apps to enjoy. In doing so, the divide between buzzworthy apps and also-rans could grow even larger.

Users probably aren’t going to embrace the removal of Twitter and Facebook for login purposes in iOS 11 either. Hopefully, this exclusion is only temporary and solely part of the development process. Otherwise, it could soon be more difficult to log into new services using your social networking accounts on iOS.

Biggest annoyance remains

Historically, Apple targets just a few of its native iOS apps for significant updates each year. The other titles are mostly ignored although they do receive minor tweaks each year.

The Mail app is in desperate need of a refresh, at least in one way.

Junk mail remains a big problem and one that Apple doesn’t seem all that committed to resolving. In the Mail app in iOS, assigning an email to the junk folder is a lengthy, four step process. More worrisome, you sometimes continue to receive junk mail from the sender even after jumping through those hoops.


Hopefully, Apple dedicates a large part of “iOS 12” to a Mail app refresh. Better still, it should make changes with “iOS 11.1.”

A forward look

A forward look

Apple’s likely to release iOS 11 to the public this fall ahead of the launch of the next iPhone. For more information on Apple’s public beta program, click here.

Do you have iOS 11 new features you like the best? Let us know below.