Top Five iOS 17 Features
All of Apple's software announcements have been somewhat overshadowed by the Apple Vision Pro, but there are a number of useful changes that are coming in iOS 17. We've pulled out five features that we think are the most interesting and that iPhone users will be most excited about when iOS 17 launches this fall.
- Live Voicemail - If you're like us, you sometimes forget that voicemail even exists. With iOS 17, when someone calls and leaves a voicemail, you can see the transcription live on your Lock Screen. If they have something notable to say, you can pick up the call right then and there.
- StandBy - StandBy is similar to Nightstand mode for the Apple Watch. When you put your phone in landscape orientation on a charger, it activates a full-screen display with at-a-glance information like your calendar, clock, weather details, and even Live Activities. It's truly best with the iPhone 14 Pro's always-on display, but it works on older iPhones if you tap on the screen.
- Interactive widgets - Widgets on the Home Screen and the Lock Screen are now interactive, which makes them much more useful. You can check off Reminders, control music playback, activate HomeKit devices, and more, without having to open up an app.
- Keyboard updates - Autocorrect is using a new machine learning model that can better predict what you want to say. You can more quickly complete words just by tapping the space bar, and in some cases, fill entire sentences. When a word is corrected, it's now underlined, and you can tap it to revert back to the original word you typed if autocorrect makes a mistake.
- FaceTime on Apple TV - If you've ever wanted a larger display for FaceTime, you're in luck, because with iOS 17 and tvOS 17, you can use FaceTime on the Apple TV. With Continuity Camera, you can connect your iPhone to your Apple TV, using the iPhone's camera for FaceTime while the picture is displayed on the larger screen of the television set. All the usual FaceTime features work like Center Stage, and it's the perfect setup for calls with multiple people. FaceTime on Apple TV works with the new FaceTime effects that let you activate hearts, balloons, laser beams, and rain through gestures.
An honorable mention should go to the Journal app that's coming in iOS 17; it's just not on the list because it's not part of the initial iOS 17 release. The Journal app will let you record your thoughts and activities each day, with Apple-provided prompts to help inspire you.
There are a number of other features in iOS 17 that are worth knowing about, including a fun option to customize what people see when you call them, a quicker way to share contact information with people, improvements to Messages, mood tracking, shared passwords, an option to lock the Safari private browsing window, AirTag sharing, and more. Full details can be found in our iOS 17 roundup, which is still undergoing updates.
Do you agree with our top picks? Let us know in the comments below. Stay tuned to MacRumors, because we're going to have coverage of iOS 17 and Apple's other software updates all summer long as the beta testing period progresses.