iOS 17 Features: What’s New & Which iPhones Will Get It…
Everything you need to know about iOS 17 – the next major operating system to be released for Apple’s iPhone in 2023.
iOS 17 Key Takeaways
- Apple is set to release iOS 17 in 2023, continuing its annual tradition of updating the iPhone’s operating system.
- iOS 17 has been officially previewed by Apple, featuring numerous improvements and new features, although it’s not as major an update as in previous years.
- The Phone app will see significant changes, including the ability to customize what people see when you call them and a new feature called Live Voicemail, which transcribes voicemails in real-time on your iPhone’s lockscreen.
- The Messages app will also be enhanced, with a new interface, automatic transcription of audio recordings, a new sticker panel, and improved search functionality.
- FaceTime is getting a boost with the ability to leave video voicemails, display animated graphics activated by hand gestures, and the option to take FaceTime video calls on your Apple TV.
- Widgets in iOS 17 will now be interactive, and a new StandBy mode will display useful information when your iPhone is in landscape orientation and not in use.
- Apple Maps will finally have an offline mode, allowing users to download a selection of a map for use without an internet connection.
- iOS 17 will be compatible with iPhones from the iPhone SE (2nd generation) onwards, up to the iPhone 14 series.
- The iOS 17 public beta is expected in July, with the final public release likely to be announced alongside the iPhone 15 series in early September 2023, and available to download later that month.
Table of Contents
Every year since 2008, Apple has introduced a new version of the operating system that runs on the iPhone, named iOS. 2023 will be no different, with iOS 17 set to debut later this year.
But just what do we know about iOS 17 now? What features, specs, and release date can be expected? Here’s what you need to know about iOS 17!
Apple has officially previewed iOS 17. Without a doubt, the new iPhone operating system has a ton of new features and improvements. However, iOS 17 is less of a major update than in previous years. That is, none of the improvements are completely radical.
iOS 17 looks much the same as iOS 16, with some nice additions and alterations throughout. But the main reason iOS 17 probably isn’t as big a release this year as in past years is that many of Apple’s developer resources are likely going towards completing work on the operating system for the Apple Vision Pro. That OS is called visionOS.
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iOS 17 Features
OK, as mentioned above this might be a major bummer for those of you who expect to see significant new features in iOS every year: iOS 17 is going to be a relatively muted new operating system compared to the feature-packed versions of previous releases.
But here are the new features that will be in the new iOS 17:
Phone App Improvements
The Phone app is getting a pretty major overhaul this year – and it’s about time. The best new feature is the ability to customize what people see when you call them – and they you. Now when a caller rings you, you’ll see a full-sized image they chose to represent themselves appear on your screen. You’ll also see their name in a font and style they chose.
Another phone-related improvement is Live Voicemail. Now when someone calls you and begins leaving a voicemail, the transcription of that voicemail will appear on your iPhone’s lockscreen in real-time. This means you can actually see what the voicemail is about before the person even ends the voicemail recording.
This will help you decide if you want to pick up the call, which will allow you to still talk to the person live, or ignore the call (and voicemail).
Messages App Improvements
The Messages app is getting some new enhancements this year in iOS 17. For starters, a new interface will group all of the Messages apps in one place. Now you can just tap a new + button to open a Messages app menu and quickly tap any one to use that Messages app.
Also, if people send you an audio recording in Messages, the app will automatically transcribe that recording so you can read it right in the message thread. This is helpful if you are in a place where you can’t stop to listen to the actual audio recording.
A new sticker panel also places all your stickers in one easy-to-reach place. It will also help you quickly find stickers that you previously used before. Messages search is also getting a boost thanks to the new ability to combine search filters. This will help you find specific messages faster in iOS 17.
Apple is also beefing up the FaceTime app in iOS 17. The coolest FaceTime feature is the new ability to leave someone a video voicemail – essentially a short recording. You’ll get this option if you FaceTime video call someone and they don’t pick up.
FaceTime can also display animated graphics around you that you activate using hand gestures. The FaceTime app will scan your hand gestures during a video call and if it detects a certain one, an animated overlay will appear on your screen.
Finally, you’ll now be able to use your iPhone with your Apple TV to take FaceTime video calls right on your Apple TV.
Widgets are one of the most popular iOS features Apple has released in recent years. With iOS 17, widgets are getting a big boost. Widgets are now interactive in iOS 17. For example, now you can mark an item off on a Reminders list simply by tapping the item on the Reminders widget.
Another awesome iOS 17 feature is called StandBy mode. This mode activates when your iPhone is in landscape orientation and not in use – such as when you have it charging on your nightstand. StandBy Mode allows the iPhone to automatically display useful information, like a bedside clock, calendar, music player, or more. You can also get quick Siri results in StandBy Mode.
Offline Mode For Maps
Apple Maps users have been waiting for this for years! iOS 17 finally introduced offline mode for the Maps app. Now you can choose to download a selection of a map to your iPhone so it’s available to you even if your iPhone doesn’t have an internet connection. This is super helpful for people who go hiking in remote places – now their maps go wherever they go.
Focus on Fewer Bugs, Better QC
By giving iOS 17 fewer new features this year, Apple could theoretically ensure that iOS 17 has fewer bugs at launch than its predecessor – and it would give Apple more time to stamp out existing bugs in iOS 16, too.
iOS 17: iPhone Requirements
Now which iPhones will be able to run iOS 17? It’s a question everyone always wonders about the new operating system.
Here’s what iPhones will support iOS 17:
- iPhone 14
- iPhone 14 Plus
- iPhone 14 Pro
- iPhone 14 Pro Max
- iPhone 13
- iPhone 13 mini
- iPhone 13 Pro
- iPhone 13 Pro Max
- iPhone 12
- iPhone 12 mini
- iPhone 12 Pro
- iPhone 12 Pro Max
- iPhone 11
- iPhone 11 Pro
- iPhone 11 Pro Max
- iPhone XS
- iPhone XS Max
- iPhone XR
- iPhone SE (2nd generation or later)
iOS 17: Release Date
The final public release of iOS 17 should then be announced alongside the new iPhone 15 series in early September 2023, with it being available to download in mid- or late-September 2023.
Also, check out the other software Apple is expected to introduce in 2023!