Apple's likely to show off the newest version of iOS this Monday at WWDC, their annual developer conference, and it's got us thinking about the features we'd like to see in iOS 6. We also asked you to share what's on your iOS wish list, and we got some interesting responses. Here are six of the best.
We already know a revamped Maps app is on the way, but what we really want is not 3D maps and crazy satellite images -- we want turn-by-turn navigation! Our current turn-by-turn choice, Waze, isn't bad, but we'd love to see something like what Google has on Android. In fact, we wouldn't mind if Google just brought their own navigation to Android either. Reader Bisnicks had some interesting thoughts on the subject:
Let's put it this way. Maps on iOS sucks. Something that is used so heavily by users and it's been pretty much neglected save for a few new features along the way. Let's hope Apple puts their acquisitions of several mapping companies to use. The anonymous traffic data they've collected may also prove to be an extraordinary feature. The addition of a turn by turn navigation is needed.
I've used it on Android and it's the one thing I actually envy Android users for. I think Apple should still rely on some of Google's mapping data, but implement some of their own for different layers. I'd like to see terrain view and interior room view added as well. Small but really annoying thing I've noticed is when you double tap the location arrow to see which way you're facing on a map is that as soon as you move the map around, it switches out of that mode.
Likelihood: Good. We know a new Maps app is on the way, and we can't imagine Apple would have spent this long working on it if it didn't have turn-by-turn navigation, one of the most requested features on iOS. And if Apple fails us, at least Google has said they're committed to bringing navigation to iOS.
iOS already has Twitter integration, but a lot of people don't use Twitter (or they use both Twitter and Facebook), so many of you are hoping for the world's biggest social network to get a little bit more love from Apple. This could be a "be careful what you wish for" situation, though -- we all know how Facebook likes to rudely inject itself into everything and track you everywhere you go. Hopefully this is one area where Apple's control-freak tendencies pay off.
Likelihood: Not bad. We've heard rumblings that Apple may more tightly integrate Facebook into iOS, so this seems like a pretty good bet.
An Improved Siri, Available On All Devices
It seems a lot of you are pretty into Siri, and want to see it:
- Improved, with better reliability, more features, and an API so other apps could use it
- Available on all devices, not just the iPhone 4S and newest iPad
- Available in other countries
We've never been too addicted to Siri, but we do agree that in its current form, Siri really does feel like a beta product (which is so unlike Apple). Some Siri improvements certainly wouldn't go unappreciated.
Likelihood: Half likely. Rumour has it that Siri will come to the new iPad, but we don't really expect to see it on older iOS devices, unfortunately. We do expect that Apple will bring a number of improvements to Siri in the realm of voice recognition and reliability, but we're a bit more sceptical on the other stuff.
This was a surprising one that we hadn't really thought of: a lot of you would like to see better Dropbox integration in iOS. We're not really sure what this would look like (perhaps the ability to view photos from Dropbox in the photos app, and other similar things), but sadly this is one we're not expecting to see. Apple has thumbed its nose at Dropbox on more than one occasion after Dropbox didn't want to sell their service, and Apple already has their own cloud storage service: iCloud. Whether it's as good as Dropbox is still up for debate (okay, no it's not), but we'll probably see Apple push iCloud a lot more before we see them add Dropbox integration to iOS.
Likelihood: Over Apple's dead body. Apple already has iCloud and a grudge against Dropbox. I don't think we'll be seeing this anytime soon.
Quick Access To Setting Toggles
One of our favourite jailbreak tweaks is still SBSettings, which puts quick toggles for things like Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and others in the Notification centre. In iOS 5, it seems to take forever just to change a tiny setting -- and we'd really like to see this made easier in iOS 6. Most of you recommended something similar to SBSettings (or just want Apple to buy SBSettings and call it a day), though reader TDoonanII001 had an interesting alternative:
Quick access to the settings you use the most. This could be done with a drop down / pop out drawer like the one that Notifications uses.
And don't just put the settings in the Notifications drawer. Give it its own spot. They could put the Notifications pull down on the right side of the top of the screen and put the Settings pull down on the left side. I would include aeroplane Mode, Wifi, Bluetooth, Notifications, Locations, Brightness, and if they do actually give us Do Not Disturb by all means include it here too.
I rather like the idea of having them in the Notification centre, but the centre is already a little vertically cluttered what with the weather and stocks widget. Obviously you can tweak these things, but it is interesting to think about other places Apple might put these things -- like perhaps the multitasking drawer. Either way, we want it.
Likelihood: Not holding our breath. This doesn't seem like it would be that hard to add to iOS, but you'd think we would have heard a rumour or two by now if this were going to happen. Most people are saying that iOS 6 is going to be mostly overhauling the built-in apps, rather than the OS itself. We aren't counting it out, but we aren't getting our hopes up either.
The Ability To Change The Default Apps
Probably the least likely on this list to happen, and yet it's one of our top choices for something we want to see in iOS: the ability to change our default mail app to something like Sparrow, our default browser to something like Dolphin, or our default dialer to something like Google Voice. Apple still doesn't make it easy to switch away from their default apps, even though a lot of third-party options are significantly better.
Likelihood: Yeah, right. I'll eat my hat when this happens.
These are far from the only changes we'd like to see in iOS, but they're certainly the biggest ones. Note that even if they don't show up in iOS 6, you can still get quite a few of them by jailbreaking and installing one of these fantastic tweaks. Got a hope for iOS 6 we didn't mention? Share it with us in the comments below.