We know that there is no such thing as a perfect operating system. Everything has it’s limitations and its problems and we work with what we have and try to find a way around it (i.e. Jailbreaking). Regardless, there are always things about any out of the box OS that definitely needs improvements.
Apple’s iOS is one of those systems. It has some great functionality, but it’s far from perfect.
Here are some of the things that need to change about Apple’s mobile OS:
1) Sync Process – The sync process is one of the biggest issues with iOS. It’s slow and tedious and requires a physical connection to the computer. It would be wonderful if the devices could do this witlessly, for instance, over the same wifi network much like Apple TV syncs with a computer. This would simplify the process immensely. The same goes with software updates. While it would be great to to this over wifi or 3G, we still wouldn’t mind being able to do this over a network with our synced computer. In fact, Apple should just start taking the computer away from the equation entirely. We can’t use our iPhone, our iPad or our iPod Touch without a computer, even though they all have an operating system that allows us to sign into iTunes, the iBook Store and the App Store all through the device, so why do we need the computer?
2) Lock Screen – Well, the iPhone lock screen doesn’t seem all that bad. That is, until you compare it to some of the other mobile operating systems. That’s when you realize how bare it is. It has the date and the time, but that’s about it. You can access your iTunes controls which are nice, and notifications pop up. Still, it’s pretty much the same ol’ lock screen we’ve seen in previous iterations of iOS. Why not a simple weather widget or something similar? A few things we can have on the lock screen that are always up and can be extremely useful at a glance. It doesn’t have to be as elaborate as the video above, but it would be nice to have something that can be checked at a glance, without the need to go outside of the lock screen.
3) Messaging system – The messaging system on the iPhone needs work. It’s very disruptive no matter what you are doing. You are playing a game of Plants vs. Zombies, beating the crap out of the living dead, then:
Even worse, is when you mean to hit close, but in your rush you tap reply. There goes your game. Given, this has gotten better thanks to multitasking. Still, that isn’t actually an improvement to the messaging system itself. It’s a change to the OS that makes it easier to jump back and forth. Even then, it’s far from perfect. There are better ways to notify us of a message without screaming it in our face.
In addition, there is no central location that lets you manage all of of your existing messages; you must look through each individual conversation.
4) Deeper access to iOS devices via SDK – Some Apps can be limited by the restrictions placed on the device by Apple, whether this is an intentional side effect or not. One of the most recent examples is this Android application (codenamed R2) by Blake Krikorian. The application is designed for those fancy Crestron home control systems that allow you to control just about everything around your house with the touch of a button Currently, he says he prefers the Android OS for the development of this application.
With iOS, he says there is no way to bypass the lock screen, even in an App. The problem here is that Krikorian says he wants the control panel screen to always be ready, so that it can automatically respond to various triggers throughout the house.
As he explains, “If someone rings the doorbell, I want all of these displays to pop up. I couldn’t do that unless I had an app running in the background all the time.”
Allowing developers to control certain things within the OS may help for such applications.
5) Email Can’t Open Zipped File Attachments – Even if the zipped files are in a format that works with the device (such as a folder full of .jpgs) you can’t open the file. This is a real letdown when you are on the road and can’t make it to a computer, but you have an email with a zipped attachment that needs to be looked at. Your best bet is to wait until you can open the file (which you may just be a bad on a public computer) or ask them if they can email everything again but request that it not be zipped.
Will iOS Improve?
Of course it will. It’s just a matter of “when.” The features improve gradually, and it will take time for iOS to take on any major changes. Given, they are usually a little late in comparison to the other mobile operating systems. That’s when Uncle Steve usually says, “We weren’t the first to this, but we will be the best.” Of course “best” is a matter of taste, but he’s simply saying that they would rather take their time to solidify their feature than to bring it out before the competition. Still, some of these changes may never happen if Apple doesn’t deem them necessary, but if we had to choose one feature that we would like changed, it would be the sync process.