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. As of today’s event, app developers hadn’t yet received the completed golden master (GM) builds of these updates, so Apple’s software release schedule seems oddly rushed. But hey, new features are coming.
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 (which had already been available on iPads). 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.
Both updates share improvements to Messages (like pinned conversations, mentions, and inline replies), cycling directions in Maps, compact notifications for incoming calls, privacy enhancements, a redesigned Music app, and much more.