While Apple famously keeps to its own way of crafting things, and has likely already considered and rejected some of the features suggested in the below list for reasons it won’t divulge, we can always hope someone in Cupertino is listening. Without further ado, here are five cool features we would love to see on iOS 11.
1. 3-Way Group FaceTime
This suggestion just makes sense. We all love having a way to video chat with our friends and family for free through iOS’ sleek and intuitive interface. But if you want to FaceTime more than one person simultaneously, and enjoy a nice, face-to-face talk with your two best friends, or need to have a conference call with two associates from work, you are flat out of luck. You have to turn to third-party apps like Skype, Booyah, and Viber to video call multiple people at the same time. Why hasn’t Apple incorporated three-way group chats into FaceTime yet? iChat used to support the feature, after all.
2. Improvements to Siri
For a long time, Siri was the most powerful AI assistant on the market, but it has since been eclipsed by Google Pixel’s built-in Assistant. As iOS and macOS users know, it’s difficult to carry on a conversation with Siri. Google Assistant, on the other hand, has natural language comprehension abilities that allow you to ask follow up questions without spelling everything out explicitly. Not to be outdone, Apple acquired VocallQ, an AI startup, late last year for $100 million. According to Cupertino, VocallQ’s proprietary AI is the most responsive, accurate, and intelligent they’ve ever seen. If all goes well, iOS 11 will feature a much smarter and more helpful Siri.
3. Ability to Stick Widgets on Home Screen
There are many reasons to choose the iOS ecosystem over Android, one feature on Google’s OS that we’d like to see migrate over to iPhones is the ability to stick widgets on the home screen. While iOS 10 allows users to customize their widgets in the Today View, to access them, you have to swipe right over the home screen, lock screen, or notification center. Android allows users to find an empty spot on their home screen and drag specific widgets into it. The coolest thing about this is that, beyond widgets that relay real-time news, weather, and sport updates, you can also drop widgets for specific actions like composing email. Bringing similar functionality over to iOS would empower users to customize their phones in ways that suit their needs, without compromising quality.
4. Theme Customization
Another flexible feature offered by Android is theme customization, which allows users to control how their phone looks and functions. Home screen themes come in a variety of visual styles and aesthetics, letting you determine the overall look and feel of your home screen through custom wallpapers, widgets, and sounds. Beyond this, Android lets users resize the grid on their home screens to accommodate more or less apps and widgets, or hide them in an app drawer. While we’re not necessarily suggesting that Apple replicate this byte for byte in iOS, we do think it would be nice to have an R2-D2 themed home screen, complete with the whistles and beeps.
5. Unlimited Free Storage for Photos
This suggestion doesn’t need any further justification. Smartphone owners take hundreds of photos per month on average. Over the years, our extensive photo libraries have grown unwieldy and could probably do with some pruning, but it’s hard to delete memories. Google Pixel comes with unlimited free photo storage. It’s only fair that iPhone 7 Plus owners, with their amped up smartphone cameras, get the same.