New features of the Apple update

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New features of the Apple update

Katherine Costello '19, Staff Writer

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Apple launched their most recent iOS update on October 30, 2018, following the release of the iPhone XR. The company has been marketing several new features that the update will include, but is it really worth all this excitement?

Let’s start with the highly anticipated group FaceTime feature. At first glance, the update seems pretty amazing. Users are able to add up to 32 people to a group call, and  can apply stickers, filters, and animojis to their screens.

After a few minutes of looking through the different effects and stickers, however, I felt that the overall change to the app was just average at best. Of course I understand that this update has made FaceTiming more convenient for iPhone users, who now don’t have to download separate apps to group video chat or FaceTime multiple people separately, but there was nothing that incredible about it. There are many apps that already have group video chats that have similar features to this one, so it just seemed like Apple was only meeting the standard of those apps.

It seems to me that Apple is trying to capitalize off of Snapchat’s success, by trying to implement the use of filters and stickers in their apps. Not only was this used in FaceTime, but now you can send pictures in Messages with stickers and other effects.

The major drawback of the group FaceTime, though, is it only works if all users wanting to participate in a call have iOS 12.1. This doesn’t sound that bad, until you realize many older model iPhones cannot download iOS 12.1.

Another significant change to the software was the addition of more than 70 new emojis, which range from skateboards to bagels to kangaroos. Of course, the company did a great job including emojis that represent all people, adding characters with red, gray, and curly hair, and even bald.

Some other small updates included changes to portrait mode and bug fixes. Users can now adjust the sharpness of the picture as they are taking it, as opposed to after.

Overall, I give Apple ⅗ stars on this update. There were only a few major changes to the software, but nothing too impressive. All of the changes seemed very standard, and there were no risks taken in switching up the format or adding more features.

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