While it's the new iPhones themselves that launch to the most fanfare every Autumn, there's another important September date in every fan's calendar – the release date of the latest iOS update. Today's the day that iOS 17 drops for every iPhone user, and rather than the headline features, it seems to be the system-wide animations that are turning heads.
iOS 17 introduces several new features including a new StandBy mode, customisable contact screens and a new NameDrop feature for quickly sharing contact details simply by bringing two phones together. The latter's delightful animation has been wowing fans since the first beta, but there are a number of similar magic touches across the new operating system. (Don't fancy waiting for the iPhone 15? Check out the best iPhone 14 deals available now.)
For the NameDrop process, not content with a mere popup screen, Apple's designers have seen fit to warp the entire top half of the iPhone display, creating a mesmeric ripple effect as data is shared between devices. And judging by the response online during early betas, it was worth the effort.
The NameDrop animation in iOS 17 is absolutely incredible. Apple software design is unparalleled! 🤯🤯pic.twitter.com/YpdGUXcGIMJune 22, 2023
But there are plenty of smaller examples from across the system too. Users have noticed that Apple has injected some into every corner of iOS 17, with extra jiggles and wiggles hitting even something simple as Control Centre's volume slider (below).
100x zoom and 200W charging are cool. But can your Android jiggle like this? pic.twitter.com/NsZavvA5RkSeptember 7, 2023
And if you've already managed to pre-order iPhone 15 Pro, there's a delightful piece of animated UI design that's exclusive to the new model. As we know, the iPhone 15 Pro features a new programmable Action Button, and the Settings menu for scrolling through different applications for it is far more beautiful and interactive than it has any right to be.
Action Button on iPhone 15 Pro Max. This video shows how to change the action (to camera for example). Cool stuff. #AppleEvent pic.twitter.com/QVy9nGBPzYSeptember 12, 2023
Indeed, while it's the new features that might hog the headlines, there seems to be a more subtle change seeping in to the entire system – the addition of more fun. After years of iOS becoming more utilitarian, eschewing skeuomorphism in favour of clean lines, it's refreshing to see a sense of playfulness make a return.
iOS 17 is due to drop in a few hours' time, at 6pm BST / 10am PT – when it's available, all you have to do is head to Settings and Software Update. And to get your hands on Apple's latest and greatest, check out the best iPhone 15 Pro deals below.