Apple iOS 14: this is all new

Apple has rolled out iOS 14 for the iPhone and iPod. The software update brings all kinds of changes and improvements. In this article you can read what's new in iOS 14 and iPad OS 14.

Set your own default apps

An interesting innovation is that in iOS 14 you can set which apps you want to use by default for your browser and mail. Previously, this was mandatory for the apps from Apple, Safari and Mail. It is not yet clear whether you can also set other default apps, for example for your music. It seems not so far.

Home screen widgets

A second noteworthy innovation is that you can use widgets on the home screen of the iPhone. These are in addition to the Today screen that has been available for years. The widgets can be from any number of apps and can vary in size. You can place them between your apps to quickly view the weather forecast, your steps and more.

Android has had support for widgets for years. iPad OS has also supported the function for some time, but via a special screen.

Hide apps and games

iOS 14 also includes the ability to hide apps and games from your home screens. A frequently requested function, because not everyone is waiting for screens full of app icons or folders. Apple calls the feature App Library and states that iOS automatically sorts apps and games into groups. For example, the software creates a folder full of Apple Arcade games. Compare the function with the app drawer that has been available in Android for years, but then - it seems - smarter.

Siri, picture in picture and more

In addition to several major improvements, iOS 14 also includes several smaller changes. Take Siri. When you call up the voice assistant, it no longer takes up the entire screen. Instead, Siri only appears at the bottom of the screen, and only fills the screen when you give an answer or command. Siri can now also send voice messages, instead of converting your spoken message to text.

In addition, iOS 14 introduces a picture in picture mode for all apps. This means that you can display a video as a small, floating window while you type a message in WhatsApp or view your route in Google Maps.

Apple is also giving iOS 14 an improved version of its map service Apple Maps, although the main improvements are only for US users.

Install iOS 14 on your iPhone

You can install iOS 14 starting today.

iOS 14 will be available for all iPhones now running iOS 13. These are the iPhone 6S and newer, for example the latest iPhone SE 2020. iPods that are suitable for iOS 13 will soon also receive iOS 14.

iPad OS 14

The improvements in iOS 14 are also available in iPad OS 14. This software update will be available for iPad OS 13 enabled iPads, and will be released in the fall like iOS 14.

Exclusive to iPad OS are features as a sidebar for many apps. They make more efficient use of the larger screen of an iPad compared to an iPhone or iPod. Apps such as Photos and Music immediately get a sidebar to switch from photo album and playlist more quickly, for example.

Better search function

iPad OS 14 also has a better search function. It no longer takes up the entire screen, but appears in the middle of the screen and shows suggestions below. The search function can now also show contacts, website suggestions and more and is therefore smarter. This makes the search function more reminiscent of that of macOS.

Another innovation is that Scribble recognizes your handwritten notes and converts them into text. If you write 'computer total' in Safari with your Apple Pencil, the browser will go to our site.

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