What’s new in iOS 17

  • Last night Apple revealed what new features and functions it has developed for iOS 17.
  • The new mobile operating system is currently in beta, with it expected to rollout to iPhone owners in September this year.
  • New features include, Contact Posters, Namedrop, StandBy, and Journal.

Last night Apple kicked off its annual WWDC 23 developers conference and while much of the focus was on the company’s first-ever augmented reality headset, the $3 499 Vision Pro, it also highlighted what has been worked on for the software side of the business, including what is in store for iOS 17.

The latest iteration of the company’s mobile operating system is currently in beta for developers, before an expected mass rollout to compatible iPhone devices in September this year.

So what is iOS 17 packing?

Well it looks like customisation, content sharing, and wellbeing are key considerations in terms of the new features on the operating system.

One new element is Contact Posters, which allow users to create a customised profile for themselves for all intents and purposes. Contact Posters will appear not only when you call, FaceTime, or message someone, but also appear in third-party apps, according to Apple.

Another interesting addition is Live Voicemail, which will display real-time generated text when someone is leaving a voicemail. Should it be important or pique your interest, you’ll be able to pick up the call. How this will work with different network operators, however, remains to be seen.

Sticking with voicemails, FaceTime users will be able to leave audio or video notes for others to listen to or watch when they have a moment. FaceTime access is also being added to the Apple TV 4K, which could make it a nice option for videoconferencing, provided everyone is using an iPhone.

On the messaging side of things, Apple is introducing Check In to Messages, which allows users to notify a family member or friend that they have made it to their destination safely.

“After a user initiates a Check In, their friend or family member will automatically be notified as soon as the user arrives. If they are not making progress toward their destination, useful information will be temporarily shared with the selected contact, such as the device’s location, battery level, and cell service status. Any information shared is end-to-end encrypted,” adds Apple in its blog post.

Screenshots of Check In on iOS 17.

When it comes to sharing content with other iPhone or Apple devices, the company is expanding the features of AirDrop with NameDrop. With this new feature you’ll be able to share contact information by simply bringing their iPhones together, or by bringing an iPhone and Apple Watch together. 

“With the same gesture, users can also share content or start SharePlay to listen to music, watch a movie, or play a game while in close proximity between iPhone devices,” notes Apple.

Next is StandBy. It gives users a full-screen experience with glanceable information designed to be viewed from a distance when iPhone is on its side or charging.

“With support for Live Activities, Siri, incoming calls, and larger notifications, StandBy makes iPhone even more useful when viewed at a distance. When charging with MagSafe, StandBy remembers a user’s preferred view. It is easy to bring up StandBy anytime by tapping the screen, and on iPhone 14 Pro with the Always-On display, it is always available,” the company continues.

Last worth highlighting is a journaling app called… Journal.

“Using on-device machine learning, personalized suggestions can be provided to help inspire a user’s journal entry. Suggestions are intelligently curated from recent activity, including photos, people, places, workouts, and more, making it easy to start a journal entry, and scheduled notifications can help build a journaling habit,” explains Apple of the feature.


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