Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
IOS Apple

Ars Technica Reviews iOS 7 233

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the flat-is-in dept.
Ars Technica has posted a pretty thorough review of iOS 7, which brings a few radical changes to at least the visual design of the system. From the article: "In one sense, iOS 7 changes nearly everything about iOS. A couple of wallpapers have made the jump, but otherwise you'd be hard-pressed to find anything in iOS 7 that looks quite like it did in iOS 6. In another sense, iOS 7 is the latest in a string of incremental updates. It adds a few new features and changes some existing ones, but this doesn't radically alter the way that you use the OS from day to day." Breaking with the design trajectory of the last few releases of most of Apple's software, the oft maligned skeumorphism of the interface has been considerably toned down.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Ars Technica Reviews iOS 7

Comments Filter:
  • Skip to page 6 (Score:1, Insightful)

    by EMG at MU (1194965) on Wednesday September 18, 2013 @11:05AM (#44884033)
    1) Multi page stories are really annoying.
    2) I guess I never read Ars a lot before but there is so little technical detail in the article I don't really understand how Ars can consider itself a technical oriented website. Seems more like a huff post story.
    3) Skip to page 6 if you want to see anything about performance/benchmarks. Most of the other 5 pages are thoughts on UI changes.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 18, 2013 @11:23AM (#44884187)

    Yes. iOS 7 software update magically adds a physical button on her iPhone when she installs it. If the button is still not visible after the update, sticking a fist up her arse might also help.

  • by mlts (1038732) * on Wednesday September 18, 2013 @11:30AM (#44884233)

    IMHO, all operating systems follow design trends. First it was just plain buttons. Then 3D buttons in the early 1990s. Then color and graphics.

    Now, the cycle has begun anew and we are back to flat buttons. Next thing we will see will be NeXTStep style black/white icons with a philosophy of "the content in the app is the stuff with colors, everything else is black/white/grey to support it."

  • Re:Skip to page 6 (Score:0, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 18, 2013 @11:37AM (#44884325)

    Correction, they are an Apple blogsite. Anything else on that site doesn't get the respect it deserves. I used to follow them until I realized all that they cared about was Apple products.

  • by mrjatsun (543322) on Wednesday September 18, 2013 @11:38AM (#44884331)

    Most of the reviews I've read just parrot what Apple said which is sad.

    Been using it for a couple months. The control panel is great. They killed the calendar, much less usable. I don't use siri so I can't comment there. Being able to have more than 9 icons in a folder is nice.

    The rest is fluff. They exchanged textures for a bunch of superfluous animation and transparency. It looks a lot different obviously. No easier or harder to use though. I'm not a big fan of the new look but was tired of the old look. Other than getting used to a different look, I didn't notice a big improvement or drop off in the other apps.

    In the end, if you already have an iphone, I would recommend it for the control panel.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 18, 2013 @12:19PM (#44884709)

    I don't mean to sound rude, but many of us don't need to feel our soul lifted by careful, artistic style in machines whose primary function to to facilitate communication and exchange of information. We just want it to work. There is a lot to be said for minimalist design for a challenged and cluttered mind. Shiny IS superfluous when you need to concentrate on the thing that you are doing.

  • by SenseiLeNoir (699164) on Wednesday September 18, 2013 @12:24PM (#44884757)

    You are not going to get hammered. I agree, the Windows Phone interface is actually very good from what I felt when I played around with a Lumia. Its other things about the OS that makes me stick with Android.

    To be honest, although I myself would NOT be interested in a Windows OS phone, I can see my parents being quite comfortable with one.

    Now coming to windows 8.... thats a different kettle of fish! They should have kept a limited aero for desktop use. I completely hate the lack of contrast on the new desktop (I do not mind the metro interface in "metro" world, I just HATE the desktop interface)

  • by DdJ (10790) on Wednesday September 18, 2013 @12:50PM (#44884983) Homepage Journal

    The only reason skeumorphism is maligned is because it's become unfashionable, not because of any inherent flaw in the aesthetic.

    I do not agree with you that it's just a matter of fashion.

    So, anyone who uses enough cross-platform software on an OS that has UI guidelines should be familiar with a basic dichotomy: should various apps on a single system be "like" each other, or should a single app always be the "same" regardless of what system it's on.

    (For example: should Firefox on MacOS look like a MacOS app, or look like Firefox for Windows or Linux?)

    If you're in the "apps should always comply with the 'local' UI guidelines, even if that makes the same app look and behave dramatically different than it does in other environments" camp -- and there are non-fashion reasons to have that point of view -- then that's an argument against skeumorphism with an actual legitimate basis.

    Now, not everyone is in that camp, sure. If that point of view makes no sense to you, then you may not understand this argument against skeumorphism. But that's because you're missing something, not because the argument isn't there (or because you disagree, not because the argument is fundamentally invalid).

    I will observe that this argument is going to be a little alien to folks who normally use Linux, because in general there are no enforced UI guidelines and no consistency of user interface experience. Unless you deliberately engineer your setup otherwise and refuse to install any "outside" software, that is. I mean to the point of a GNOME user refusing to run any browser other than Epiphany, for example.

    But, such UI consistency is somewhat better on Windows (before 8, anyhow), and is something a lot of MacOS users took for granted for years. That's part of where the somewhat widespread visceral negative reaction to Apple's embracing of skeumorphism came from, even if many of the ranting users couldn't articulate that.

    (Myself: I got addicted to UI consistency back when I ran NeXTstep, and it's the primary reason I try not to run Firefox or Chrome on a daily basis. While I won't say I hated skeumorphism, it never sat quite right with me in most cases.)

  • by DdJ (10790) on Wednesday September 18, 2013 @01:09PM (#44885219) Homepage Journal

    I'll agree with you that I don't see a problem with the way it happens, but it's not just a semantic argument.

    There are an awful lot of people here on slashdot who would assert that "full multitasking" means that every app has full access to its entire code path all the time, and can do anything in the background that it could do in the foreground, like desktop apps on a Linux system. That switching between foreground execution and background execution isn't even something an app has to notice.

    The reality is basically that the app can only fully run in the foreground. In other situations it, in practice, can set up little scripts or daemons to handle specific enumerated things on its behalf when it's not in the foreground.

    Some of that code fires off when a trigger condition comes up, and then have a limited time to do their business (eg. geofencing). Some keeps running in the background as long as its fulfilling a specific purpose (eg. background audio).

    Has iOS got multitasking? Yes. Has it got multitasking that's more than enough for most normal users who aren't doing exotic things? Yes.

    Has it got full multitasking? No, it really really doesn't. Just try running a Jabber client that lets you stay logged in all day long, or a mail client that downloads your mail before you open it without push notifications.

    (Of course this isn't a bad thing, as long as the multitasking it's got is sufficient. True full multitasking would actually be a bad thing.)

  • Re:Skip to page 6 (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Quila (201335) on Wednesday September 18, 2013 @01:33PM (#44885489)

    We've had such a backlash against the current habit of putting one paragraph per page in order to increase hits that we've forgotten pagination does have it's place, such as when the pages are very long as in this case.

  • by BasilBrush (643681) on Wednesday September 18, 2013 @03:09PM (#44886537)

    Leave that up to the app to decide maybe?

    So much for design consistency.

    I've never had a problem on my Android phones understanding what the back button did after pressing it once or twice with a new app.

    And there's the fail. You shouldn't have to memorize what a standard button happens to do in this particular app.

    With apps that have multiple screens that change, it usually takes you back a screen, such as back to the main menu. If you're at the main menu, it exits. With apps that do everything in the same screen, such as a web browser, it takes you back a page or back to your home screen.

    So the same single press on a button might do one of 3 different things. Oops.

    Google invented the concept of an "Up" button to do the same as the back button, only to drop the "exit the app" function. Only that button isn't a hardware one. Partially fixing the problem, or just making it even more messy?

  • by Pieroxy (222434) on Wednesday September 18, 2013 @03:13PM (#44886597) Homepage

    It's just another example where Apple has chosen to rigorously enforce what they think is best, where Android has chosen to allow the app developer or the end user what is best.

    It just goes both ways. I could equally claim that Android forces the app developer to handle a back and menu button - however useless in said app while Apple lets freedom to the developer to do whatever (s)he chooses. I could also claim Android enforce two buttons on users in a space that is usually used to hold a phone while Apple leaves this precious space free of any UI elements.

    So you see, each OS is enforcing its own vision, but you can't claim that one is enforcing their closed view while the other is enforcing freedom. This is just trollish at best.

Heuristics are bug ridden by definition. If they didn't have bugs, then they'd be algorithms.

Working...