Apple’s proprietary operating system for its iDevices has finally gotten the official update its users had been waiting for. iOS 9 has started hitting Apple devices worldwide today. The new update will be available to users who have a minimum of an iPhone 4s, iPad 2 or fifth-generation iPod touch. It can be downloaded free via iTunes or as an over-the-air update through the Software Update function in iOS’s Settings app.

If you are wondering what the new OS will bring in tow, here’s a glimpse at its release-notes:

With this update, your iPhone, iPad and iPod touch become more intelligent and proactive with powerful search and improved Siri features. New multitasking features for iPad allow you to work with two apps simultaneously, side-by-side or with the new Picture-in-Picture feature. And, built-in apps become more powerful with detailed transit information in Maps, a redesigned Notes app, and an all-new News app. And improvements at the foundation of the operating system enhance performance, improve security and give you up to an hour of extra battery life.

Let’s start with the iPad. Users of the iPad Air 2 or Mini 4 will receive new features including Split View, which runs two apps side-by-side, Slide Over, which lets users open a second app without exiting the first, and Picture in Picture, which allows compatible video to keep playing in a smaller window (sounds like Samsung?). The latter two features will also be available on the iPad Air, Mini 2, and Mini 3.

Moving on, other new features of iOS 9 include a newer, smarter and proactive Siri. Apple’s virtual voice assistant will now be able to find media content using criteria like dates and locations, or set reminders based on what’s currently on-screen with phrases like “remind me about this tonight.” This could be very useful considering that your work will be made quite a bit lesser.

You will also get a new search screen to the left of the homescreen, which will display apps and contact details based on your recorded habits. It also offers a news feed and points of interest based on location. Your device will now also be able to set reminders according to messages and Mail you receive and notify you based on other parameters too.

The Notes app has also gotten a revamp with additions like checklists, attachments and sketching. Maps will now restore public transit directions, Passbook has been renamed as Wallet and will support store credit and rewards cards. Newsstand has been replaced with News. This will now bring you all articles in one place but with custom formatting for major partner publications.

Another major highlight of the new OS is that Apple claims to have improved the software to enhance the battery life of your device. The Cupertino says that just installing the new software will add an extra hour to your battery life. The new update will also require lesser space to download and install than the previous versions. For instance, iOS 8 required up to 4.58 gigabytes of free space while an equivalent iOS 9 download will need only about 1.3.

While older device owners need to download and install this update, you could also get it preloaded on the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, launching on September 25, and the iPad Pro, due in November.


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