Apple’s next major software upgrades for the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and Apple TV are almost ready. At today’s “Time Flies” event, the company announced that iOS 14 and iPadOS 14, along with the latest watchOS and tvOS updates, will start rolling out on Wednesday, September 16th.
iOS 14 brings widgets to the iPhone home screen for the first time, gathers all of your apps into a new App Library, and adds picture-in-picture mode. There’s also a new Translation app. iPadOS 14 won’t let you put widgets anywhere you want on the home screen, but it does build upon what you can do with the Apple Pencil. The new Scribble feature of iPadOS 14 lets you “write by hand in any text field across iPadOS, and your words automatically convert to text.” Additionally, more of Apple’s native apps are adding sidebars and expanded menus to take advantage of the iPad’s bigger screen.
You’ll be able to watch shows on the likes of Netflix and Apple TV+ while you do other things on your iPhone, thanks to the handy picture-in-picture mode. Siri is getting some upgrades too, including an audio translation feature, and it’ll pop up at the top of your screen instead of taking over your entire display.
In Messages, you’ll be able to pin your most important conversations to the top for easier access and group chats will have in-line replies. Cycling directions are coming to Maps, which’ll have improved location-finding features too.
There’s also a tool in iOS 14 called app clips, through which you can access parts of apps without having to download them. You might, for instance, pay for parking using Apple Pay and Sign in with Apple without having to wait for an app to finish downloading or creating an account for an app you might never use again.