iOS 14: New Features Coming to the iPhone

Every June, Apple hosts a WWDC (Worldwide Developers Conference) where the company announces software upgrades and occasionally hardware releases. For 2020, Apple introduced developers and Apple device users to the upcoming iOS 14 features via an online ‘event’. In this blog we’ll cover what the iPhone will look like when iOS 14 rolls out and what iPhone models will support the latest iOS.

iOS 14 Feature Upgrades

Refreshed Homescreen

iOS 14 will bring a new look to the homescreen with a feature called App Library and redesigned widgets. Previously, apps could have been arranged on different homescreen pages, with iOS 14 they can be grouped into categories with each having its own folder. Just slide left on your homescreen and the App Library will pop up.

App Library and Widgets on iOS 14. Image: Apple

Widgets are coming to the homescreen and you can pin as many as you want to have quick access. There will be a feature called Smart Stack that will allow you to keep a bunch of widgets grouped neatly together and they will change automatically using on-device intelligence to keep the right information in front of your eyes when you need it based on the time of day.

Picture-in-Picture Support

With iOS 14, compatible iPhones will support Picture-in-Picture mode will enable multitasking and will let you collapse a video you're watching or continue your FaceTime call while you're using a different app. if the video window is in your way, you can hide it while still listening to audio and bring it back up on your screen whenever you wish.

Updates to Messages

Pinning conversations to the top of your chats list isn't something completely new since Whatsapp can do this already, but this feature will come to the iMessage app along with mentions and inline replies coming to group chats. Mentions will come handy for busy group members who choose to mute the chat, and notifications will be received when your name has been directly mentioned in the conversation.

Pinned Messages on iOS 14. Image: Apple


Maps are getting additional route planning options for cyclists with directions that will alert you of busy streets, elevations and bike lane suggestions. For electric car owners, Maps will be able to track your car's battery charge and pick a route with EV charging stations along the way.

Advanced Translate App

This new app will help you to communicate in 11 different languages with an option to use the app offline which is useful when travelling to parts of the world where you can't rely on a strong internet connection. To begin the conversation, you will need to launch the app and turn your iPhone into landscape mode. The app can automatically detect which languages are being spoken and provide instant translation.

Translate App. Image: Apple

App Clips

There are many apps and you just can't have them all downloaded and ready to be used, which is why Apple are introducing App Clips. It's a mini version of an app (less than 10 MB in size) which you can discover through NFC or QR codes. The places where App Clips can be used will be marked with App Clip codes and you can launch the App Clip right there at the spot by scanning the code with your iPhone's camera or tapping on it with NFC enabled, for example, to pay for parking or collect reward points when you purchase a cup of coffee.

App Clips. Image: Apple

Digital Car Keys

iOS 14 will have support for digital car keys, and this feature will be available for iPhones starting from the iPhone XR and newer. You will be able to use NFC function of your iPhone to unlock and start the car without the actual key. Digital keys can be shared between drivers with additional settings to restrict driving. This feature is a bit questionable in terms of practicality because we know phones tend to run out of battery and if your phone is dead you might need to walk to your destination, however it might be useful for some iPhone users.

Improved Privacy

App pages on the App Store will provide a summary of permissions that the app will request from you in order for you to be able to use the app, and there will be more transparency on how and what information is being used.

iOS 14 Compatible iPhones

Apple have revealed a list of iPhones that will be compatible with iOS 14 and it looks impressive with the first generation iPhone SE being able to run on iOS 14.

iOS 14 Release Date

The beta version will be available shortly for developers and users can join the public beta for free. The latest iOS will be available later this year, so we would suggest shortly after the new iPhone release in September.


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