iOS 7 will be coming to the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch later on this year but unfortunately, not all devices are equal and Apple will not be offering some iOS 7 features for its older devices and in some cases, it won’t be offering an upgrade to iOS 7 at all.
At its WWDC keynote yesterday, Apple announced the brand new iOS 7 operating system which will be released to iPhone, iPad and iPod touch owners sometime in the fall. It’s thought that the company will release the software alongside a new iPhone, presumed to be the iPhone 5S, possibly in September. That rumored September launch window falls in line with the typical 60-90 days it takes an iOS update to move from beta to Gold Master.
Apple, along with the announcement, released the iOS 7 beta to developers yesterday, giving them a chance to use the new software before its eventual arrival for consumers.
While a specific iOS 7 release date is unknown, what we do know is that many iPhone, iPad and iPod touch owners are in for a major overhaul, perhaps the largest in the history of iOS. iOS 7 will be arriving with a completely revamped design that offers a different, flatter look. The update will also introduce overhauled core applications including Apple’s Weather app, Calendar, Photos and more.
However, not all is good in the land of iOS 7. As is the case with most iOS updates, there are devices that are going to be left behind and there are devices that, while getting then new software, won’t see all of the features.
Such is the case with iOS 7. While Apple touted all of the new that is coming with iOS 7 and mentioned which devices would be getting which features, the company did not go into depth about features that devices would and would not be getting, instead leaving that to the fine print on the iOS splash page.
Here, we break down the iOS 7 features that will and won’t be heading to Apple’s mobile devices.
Apple, thus far, has only offered up specific destination information on a few iOS 7 features. What we mean by that is that the list could potentially grow when the final version of iOS 7 is released. Perhaps some features don’t perform well in beta and are added to the list, perhaps Apple issues some additional features that are device-specific in the final version.
As of right now, iPhone 5 owners are sitting pretty. The features that are in question which include AirDrop, Panorama, Filters in Camera, Filters in Photo, Square photos and new Siri functionality are all destined for the iPhone 5.
This likely won’t change given how new the device is. However, it’s possible that the iPhone 5 won’t get the full iOS 7 experience as Apple is likely to include at least one unique software feature with its new iPhone in order to make it an appealing upgrade.
Exactly what that software might be is unknown but rumors suggest that the iPhone 5S could have a fingerprint scanner and that likely would need some unique software.
The iPhone 4S fares well with the iOS 7 update but there still are some features that will be missing after owners update their software to iOS 7 sometime this fall.
iPhone 4S owners unfortunately won’t get the benefit of AirDrop or the ability to view photo filters within the Camera application. That means that users won’t be able to get a preview of a filter before the photo is taken.
The good news is that all of the other features in question will be coming to the iPhone 4S when iOS 7 arrives which means that iPhone 4S owners should have a fairly easy go of it when they head into the second year of their contract.
While the iPhone 4S is on tap to receive plenty of iOS 7 features, iPhone 4 owners aren’t so lucky. The iPhone 4 iOS 7 update won’t be bare bones but it’s shaping up to be far less exciting than the updates for Apple’s newer devices.
The iPhone 4 never received Siri so obviously the new functionality is out. However, the iPhone 4 also won’t receive AirDrop, Panorama, or Filters in Camera.
Given how old the iPhone 4 is, it’s possible that we could see other, smaller features missing when the final version arrives but at the moment, those are the biggest features that won’t be arriving this fall.
Apple crushed the hopes and dreams of iPhone 3GS owners at the tail end of its keynote when it announced that the iOS 7 update wouldn’t be coming to iPhones below the iPhone 4. That means that iOS 6 is the end of the road for the iPhone 3GS which lived a life longer than most smartphones.
The first-generation iPad will not be getting iOS 7 either.
The iPad 2, however, will be getting iOS 7 though its feature list is even bleaker than the iPhone 4’s. Apple has decided to cut a number of different features from the iPad 2 update, making it the slimmest iOS 7 update on paper.
Apple’s second-gen iPad will, out of all of the aforementioned features, only be getting the new iTunes Radio. That means no AirDrop, that means no Siri, and that means none of the photography related features.
iPad 3 & iPad 4
The iPad 3 and iPad 4, which Apple refers to as the iPad with Retina Display, will fare much better than the iPad 2. Apple claims that the iPad 3 won’t be getting AirDrop, Panorama mode, or Filters in Camera. The rest of the features will be on board.
As for the iPad 4, the only difference is that it will have access to AirDrop, something that should delight those that love to share content with friends or family.
Owners of Apple’s smaller slate, the iPad mini, are in pretty good shape as well as the iOS 7 update will only be missing Panorama and the Filters in Camera. The other features, including the new Siri functions, should be available when the software arrives.
iPod touch Fifth-Generation
Like iPhone 5 owners, owners of the latest version of the iPod touch are going to be the beneficiaries of just about everything that iOS 7 has to offer. All of these features will be coming to iPod touch fifth-gen owners though again, it’s possible that the iPhone 5S will offer some features that other devices, iPod touch fifth-gen included don’t get.
iPod touch models older than the fifth-gen will not be receiving updates to iOS 7.