iOS 9 has been released for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. The update is available for all users via iTunes or through over the air software update.
What’s new in iOS 9?
iOS 9 is a major update for iPhone and, specially, iPad. For those interested, the final release has a different build number 13A344, than the GM release, which was 13A340.
Here is the list of some of the top new features in this release:
iPhone, iPad and iPod touch
- News app
- Updated notes app with drawing and formatting support
- Maps updated with Transit and Nearby
- Wallet ( previously Apple Pay ) with store credit card and reward cards support
- iCloud Drive app
- Siri and proactive search. Apps, places and news suggestions, integration with Mail and Calendar apps, search inside third party apps, perform quick calculations and conversions and much more
- Search in Photos
- Low Power mode
- Smaller updates
- Improved performance ( however, this is more evident in iOS 9.1 rather than iOS 9)
- Improved security
- Content blockers
- Easy migration from Android
For iPad only:
- Split screen multitasking
- Slide over
- Picture in picture for videos
- Updated keyboard with quick shortcut keys for cut, copy, paste and easy text selection
- Keyboard shortcuts ( for wireless keyboards )
Here is the list of compatible devices:
- iPhone 4s
- iPhone 5
- iPhone 5c
- iPhone 5s
- iPhone 6
- iPhone 6 Plus
- iPhone 6s
- iPhone 6s Plus
- iPad 2
- iPad 3
- iPad 4
- iPad Air
- iPad Air 2
- iPad Mini
- iPad Mini 2
- iPad Mini 3
- iPad Mini 4
- iPod touch 5th generation
- iPod touch 6th generation
How to upgrade to iOS 9?
Before upgrading your iOS device, make sure to back it up to iCloud and iTunes. The best way to upgrade is by doing a clean install. This can be done by either resetting your iOS device and then upgrading it via iTunes or Software Update in Settings or downloading the IPSW firmware file, when it’s available, and upgrade via iTunes.
Clean install is the only way to achieve best performance and battery life. Note that once you upgrade to iOS 9, downgrading would not be possible once Apple stops signing iOS 8.4.1
iOS 9 Reviews
In case you want to know the best opinions on iOS 9, I have compiled a list of my favorites:
The Verge has summed up iOS 9 nicely as a future bet by Apple:
But if you look deeper and take the new things Apple added to iOS 9 as a whole, you can see how it’s one of the most future-looking updates to the platform in a long time. Apple is betting that we’ll want smarter devices that not only provide information when we ask for it, but serve it up before we even know what we’re looking for. It’s betting that touchscreen devices with detachable keyboards are going to be the devices that replace laptops, maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but maybe sooner than you think. And it’s betting that by working with publishers and content makers, it can provide an attractive alternative to the world of annoying pop-ups and data-tracking ads that the open web is quickly becoming.
Federico Vittici of MacStories says that iOS 9 lays the groundwork for the next 5 years, which actually started 2 years ago with iOS 7:
With San Francisco, a revised keyboard, and an interface that’s been polished across the OS, Apple’s new design language has moved past its awkward (and problematic) teenage years to accept its own style and voice. Interfaces aren’t diamonds: they’re not forever, and iOS will change again. For now, iOS 9 is, visually speaking, a culmination of the work started two years ago, ready for what comes next.
Rene Ritchie from iMore also thinks that iOS 9 sets up the iPhone and iPad for what comes next:
From download sizes to battery life, search to multitasking, it’s better in ways that make day to day use and enjoyment of the iPhone and iPad better. It’s not the radical redesign of iOS 7 or the functional revolution of iOS 8, but iOS 9 has the performance and polish that makes everything that came before better, and sets the iPhone and iPad up for everything that comes next.
There is a pretty common trend in all these in-depth reviews – iOS 9 makes these devices ready for what’s next. Features like News, iPad’s multitasking updates (finally!), easy switching between apps on iPhone through the tiny back link, search within apps and much more just show that this is a start of a different era for iOS and the apps that will be made for it.