If you own an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, you’re probably aware that the new iOS9 is now available for download. While some people are hesitant to upgrade after iOS8 significantly decreased speed and performance on some older iPhone and iPad models, most are finding that iOS9 is lighter and easier for older devices to run. Apple users will also be happy to know that the upgrade is only 1.3 GB, a much smaller size than the almost 4 GB iOS8 package.
iOS9 boasts a handful of new features and upgrades to general functionality. Proactive, a new intelligent assistant feature, offers shortcuts to frequently used apps and features by observing your device usage and habits. By monitoring what you use on your device and when, Proactive adds those frequently used icons to a quick-access list on your search screen. It also offers news stories that are trending based on your location, browses your calendar and local traffic data to remind you to leave for appointments, and can even suggest local events for you. While this feature is new with iOS9, it is very similar to Google Now, a comparable service for Android users, but with slightly less stability.
iOS9 also includes app multitasking for iPad, a function that has been long awaited for many iPad users. Multitasking allows users to view two apps simultaneously, however, they can only interact with one app at a time. iOS9 does offer a more advanced version of multitasking called Split View where users can interact with two apps simultaneously, but its only compatible with iPad Air 2.
A handful of native apps have also been updated. Maps now offers public-transit directions in a handful of cities as well as improved location detail. Notes has also integrated a “to-do” list option as well as the ability to embed digital sketches and information from other apps.
One of the biggest changes is the proposed boost in battery life. Due to the streamlined nature of the new OS, Apple claims an iPhone 6 running iOS9 will gain an extra hour of battery life. Whether or not this claim will hold up, iOS9 also offers a new Low Power Mode that will extend battery life even further. Users can manually switch to Low Power Mode if they so choose, but the option will pop up with the warning message when your battery hits 20%.
Other upgrades include changes to the keyboard for iPad and iPhone 6 plus that include one touch copy and paste, changes to the shift button, and access to a ‘cursor’ for highlighting text.
While functionality and speed seems to be the focus of iOS9, some users have reported significant lag and orientation problems, particularly when playing games. Other reported problems include unresponsive touchscreens, app crashing, and general booting problems. Every OS comes with its bugs, and iOS9 is no exception. If you’ve made the switch and find yourself encountering problems, this simple guide may have the solution you need.