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iOS 9 Features

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iOS 9 iPad switch main multitasking app with 4 finger swipe

Split View multitasking integrates with the App Switcher. The main app on the left can be changed by launching the App Switcher or swiping four fingers horizontally. This makes it easy to take notes or view instructions in one panel, while switching between apps in the other.

Picture in Picture (PIP) video is the most visually stunning aspect of iOS 9 multitasking. Simply tap the PIP button and the iOS 9 video player will pop it out of its fixed panel. From there, the user can position and resize the video on top of any other application.

iOS 9 PiP multitasking

It always stays on top, but it can be tucked to the side if you just want to listen to the audio track.

iOS 9 iPad tuck PiP offscreen

Slide Over multitasking and Picture in Picture video are supported on the iPad Air, iPad Air 2, iPad mini 2 and iPad mini 3.

iPads supporting Slide Over multitasking

Split View multitasking is only supported on the iPad Air 2. Of course, we expect a new iPad to launch in a few months, with the possibility of a larger iPad Plus model.

iPads supporting Split View multitasking

New App Switcher

The new iOS 9 App Switcher is actually a throwback to Cover Flow. Anyone who has used Mac OS X will recognize this. It’s a much better way to preview apps in the App Switcher user interface. Now you can read the text on a document or app without launching the app.

iOS 9 Offers Improved Performance

After a disappointing iOS 8 release, which has slowed down older devices, Apple pledged that iOS 9 will boost performance. Some of the most compelling new features of iOS 9 are beneath the surface.

iOS 9 system improvements

Metal, Apple’s graphics performance enhancing technology, is updated to work with the core graphics capabilities of iOS. You will now see an improvement in graphics performance across all apps, even if developers don’t directly use the Metal APIs.

iOS 9 Improves Battery Life

I’ve never experienced poor battery life on any Apple device. Not everyone shares this experience. iOS 8.3 seems to have introduced battery-draining defects, particularly on the iPhone 5S. iOS 9 promises to remedy this.

Apple engineers have scrutinized every aspect of battery performance, adding one full hour of use to the iPhone. iOS 9 also offers a low power mode. Sliding a single switch will alter numerous settings, making the battery last up to three hours longer, in addition to the one extra hour provided by iOS 9 efficiency improvements. Initial tests have found that lower power mode results in a 40% reduction in performance.

iOS 9 is More Secure

iCloud now requires two-factor authentication. When you sign in with a new device or new browser Apple will send a verification code to your existing devices. Entering the code allows access on the new device or browser. This prevents a malicious user from hacking into your account. Even if they know your user ID and password, they will not receive the verification code.

iOS 9 also enforces a 6 digit passcode, instead of the current 4 digit code. The two extra digits make it much more difficult for an unauthorized user to access your device.

iOS 9 Offers More for Developers

Apple has added more APIs and SDKs to make life easier for developers, enabling them to deliver better apps. Developers are now able to expose app content to Spotlight, making it possible to search within apps. Testing user interfaces can be accomplished directly in Xcode, Apple’s app development tool. Developers can now make their apps work across more devices with App Thinning. This technology streamlines an app so it takes up less space on an older device.

iOS 9 developer APIs and SDKs

Three new frameworks have been added for graphics and gaming developers — GameplayKit, Model I/O and Replay Kit. Gameplay Kit introduces artificial intelligence features such as path finding and obstacle avoidance. 3-D Graphics now have more depth and better lighting with Model I/O. ReplayKit enables gamers to capture video of game play and share it on social media. (continue…)

iOS 9 gaming APIs and SDKs

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