Last year Apple stripped iOS bare in order to redefine how we do things. This year they build atop everything that came before in order to redefine what we can do.
iOS 8 is the latest version of the operating system software that powers every iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. That's hundreds of millions of mobile devices used day in, day out, by hundreds of millions of people around the world.
It includes updates to Messages and Photos, and an all-new Health app, a predictive keyboard and contextual Spotlight, interactive notifications and better Mail and Safari, Family Sharing options and Continuity workflows, and there's Extensibility, which allows for custom keyboards, custom sharing and action options, custom photo filters and effects, notification center widgets, iCloud Drive, and custom storage providers.
There are also new frameworks like HomeKit for home automation, manual camera controls, Touch ID authentication for third party apps, SpriteKit, SceneKit, and Metal for games, and a new programming language called Swift.
Yang to iOS 7’s yin, iOS 8 is a functional rejuvenation that counterbalances last year's visual refresh. And just like last year, when iOS 7 was called the biggest redesign since the first iPhone shipped in 2007, iOS 8 is being called the most important upgrade since the App Store launched in 2008. So, is it?