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Apple iOS 12 features: ARKit 2.0, group FaceTime, new Animoji, and more

Here are all the new features and updates coming to iPhones and iPads with iOS 12.

tech Updated: Jun 05, 2018 13:12 IST
Marcia Sekhose
Marcia Sekhose
Hindustan Times
Apple,WWDC,WWDC 2018
Apple senior vice president of Software Engineering Craig Federighi speaks at the Apple Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC).(REUTERS)

Apple kicked off its annual developer conference, WWDC 2018 with the first announcement focusing on iOS. As expected, Apple announced iOS 12 which the company says will be available on all devices running iOS 11.

Apple highlighted new features and improvements coming to iOS 12 for Photos, FaceTime, iMessage, Siri, and its Augmented Reality platform, ARKit.

Performance

With iOS 12, Apple has laid focus on performance and Augmented Reality (AR). Apple will be doubling down on performance on iOS 12 with apps launching twice as fast, and throttling CPU to the max when needed. Apple has also kept older devices like iPhone 6 Plus in mind. iOS 12 will load apps up to 40% faster on older iOS devices.

ARKit 2.0

Apple has heavily upgraded its augmented reality platform for iOS 12 and has partnered with popular global brands for its implementation. Apple announced Universal Scene Description Optimised (USDZ) in partnership with Pixar to launch a new file format for AR. Apple has also partnered with Adobe to integrated iOS into the company’s Creative Cloud.

Apple has also launched a new app called ‘Measure’. As the name suggests, you can use this app to measure objects, lines easily. You can tap on one point and drag it to the other to measure an object. This app will also show measurements with dimensions of objects.

Apple has updated its ARKit platform with ARKit 2 which features improved face tracking, realistic rendering, 3D object detection, persistant experiences, and shared experiences. For ARKit 2, Apple has partnered with LEGO which lets users augment a digital environment onto an existing physical LEGO house. You can augment characters, vehicles that can be driven around thereby creating an AR game in itself. You can augment inside the :EGO houses as well.

ARKit 2 also comes with multi-user support which lets up to four friends play at the same time. You can save the game and pick up where you left off. LEGO ARKit experiences will be coming to App Store later this year.

Photos

Apple introduces search suggestions in its ‘Photos’ app on iOS 12. Photos will now give suggestions to users like key moments, places, photo categories, places by business names like museums, events, better keywords for search.

There’s also a new tab called ‘For You’ which include memories, featured photos, live photos, shared album activity. iOS 12 will suggest sharing options by collating photos from one event like dinner into one album and sending it to people in the album. Friends who receive this will also have a ‘Share Back’ option to send photos from the same event with just one click. Photos will be shared in full resolution via Messages which Apple says is fully end-to-end encrypted, and develops with on-device machine learning.

Animoji, FaceTime and iMessage

Apple introduced Animoji last year on iPhone X. On iOS 12, Animoji gets a new “tounge detection” feature. Apple has also announced new Animoji characters on iOS 12 which include Ghost and T. Rex. Apple has also launched ‘Memojis’ which allows users to create their own 3D emoji avatar.

Apple has also announced Animoji for FaceTime and iMessage. More features for FaceTime on iOS include group video calling where users can add up to 30 users.FaceTime is also now integrated with iMessage. As for iMessage, it gets new filters and new features.

Parental controls, DND mode

iOS 12 will give more control to parents who will be able to authorise which apps or website their kids should access.iOS 12 will also have a ‘Screen Time’ which is a new dashboard that gives a weekly summary on how users use the iPhone or iPad. The dashboard gives a summary on time spent on different applications. Apple has also a new time limit feature.

Siri on iOS 12 will also suggest users to disable notifications for applications they don’t use frequently. Apple has also finally added group notifications on iOS 12.

Apple updated its Do Not Disturb mode with a new bedtime feature. This prevents notifications appearing on the screen. DND now also allows users to set a time limit on the time the want to stay away from the notifications.Apple is now shifting its focus on digital wellbeing, similar to Google’s.

Other features

iOS 12 brings more features for Apple’s CarPlay which will now support third-party navigation applications.iBooks has now been rebranded to Apple Books.Voice memos also get minor upgrade as the app will now sync with iCloud and will be soon available to Apple iPad users.iOS 12 will also bring the Stocks app to iPads.

Apple has also introduced new features for its News app. On iOS 12, the app will feature an improved UI making it easier for users to access news from their favourite publishers.

First Published: Jun 04, 2018 23:24 IST