With the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) mere weeks away, anticipation for the next version of Apple's mobile operating system is about to reach a fevered pitch. As the rumor mill revs up in preparation, we thought we'd ask you, dear readers, what features you'd most like to see in iOS 7? (Take our survey below.)
The pressure on Apple to push out a substantial iOS upgrade hasn't been this intense in some time. After all, this will be first major release since the Great Maps Debacle of 2012 and, more important, since Jony Ive took over as the head of Apple's Human Interface Design team.
Indeed, most of the chatter about iOS 7 so far has been about what it will look like. Flatter. Fewer skeuomorphic design elements. A total overhaul, some have suggested. iOS could certainly use a visual refresh, but there's a far more important question: What will it do?
Screw The Skeuo-Whatever. What Will iOS 7 Do?
Common requests include multi-user login, more robust security options, an overhaul of the dull Mail app and enhanced enterprise and BYOD features. Inevitably, we'll see Siri learn a few more tricks. Apple Maps will continue to improve.
As always, there's a lesson or two to be learned from the jailbreaking community. Expect to see a few features lifted from Cydia when iOS 7 is unveiled in June. Plenty of us would love to have the ability to choose new default apps for things like email, maps and Web browsing, but such a move would probably play too much to Google's benefit for Apple to stomach.
More generally, there's a certain pressure on Apple to remain competitive with Android. In the early days, Android was rusty and small enough for Apple to largely ignore in its product development. Now the competition is very real, with Android-based phones and tablets getting sleeker and more functional all the time. If nothing else, this might mean that Apple will need to consider making iOS more customizable and less restrictive.
Be heard! Take our survey, below, and be sure to elaborate further in comments if you'd like.