This is the continual cycle of software platforms: every good idea Google developers implement in Android, somehow ends up in iOS after a while, just like some features found in Apple’s operating system appear in Android after some time.
Here are some of the biggest functions iOS 14 packs, inspired by Android features.
Home Screen Widgets
After years of keeping the iOS Home screen stagnant, Apple is finally enabling users to add widgets to the panel. Widgets have been one of the most significant differences between Android and iOS going back to the first Android launch. It is a function Google continued to develop over the years, enabling custom sizes, third-party support, and a gallery with previews of the widgets.
App List View
Apple calls its duplication of this feature the ‘App Library.’ It is similar to Android’s app drawer, which is a list of every app on your device, which is irrelevant to its visibility on the Home screen. However, unlike Android, which offers a straight list of all the apps, the new feature in Apple’s OS automatically labels the apps into various categories, such as ‘Social,’ ‘Entertainment’ or ‘Apple Arcade’ sections.
Third-Party Default Email and Browser Apps
This function is less ‘borrowed from Android’ but something the tech giant has intentionally kept away from its users. iOS 14 will finally enable iPhone owners to download and install, as well as use their own default browser and email apps, rather than being limited to Safari and Mail.
However, there are a few catches, such as all iOS browsers still have to utilize Apple’s engine, and developers will have to release updates for their apps to support the feature. It also only applies to the email and browser app, while all the other applications, such as Apple Maps or Apple Music, are still the default ones.
‘Discreet’ Voice Assistant and Calls
Apple is launching a new ‘discreet’ view for Siri in the new OS, where the voice assistant will show up with a small icon at the bottom of the display, rather than occupying the entire screen. The results brought up by Siri will also appear in smaller windows at the top of the panel, without obstructing the rest of the display.
Moreover, Apple’s new ‘compact calls’ design, which also restricts incoming calls from taking the whole screen, is similar to an Android feature.
One of the most captivating concepts added in iOS 14 is the new App Clips function, which allows developers to select parts of their apps in small portions, allowing users to get main features without having to install the entire app.
It is an interesting idea, and one Android has had since 2018, with the app ‘slices’ function and the instant apps feature launched in 2017.
Apple’s Map has been trying to make up for the lost time Google Maps has used for a while, with each new iOS update bringing the app closer o Google’s leading example. iOS 14 has a new cycling feature that provides directions specifically for bike riding, taking into account factors like elevations, stairs, and bike routes in a city.
The feature is only available in a few cities so far – NYC, LA, San Francisco’s Bay Area, Shanghai, Beijing – but we’re pretty sure Apple will be looking to catch up fast with Google’s standards.
Another iconic service Android devices offer is the Google Translate function, which is what Apple is getting with iOS 14. Similar to Google translate, the new iOS feature allows users to translate typed and spoken phases in the new app and is also providing integrated support with Safari to translate webpages. For now, Apple’s version has only 11 languages supported.
This feature is not a first for Apple’s operating system, but it is new to the iPhone this year. Released in Android 8.0, and to the iPad in iOS 11, the iPhone is now getting a picture-in-picture mode, which can be utilized by users to play videos while other apps are used as well. Thie function also supports FaceTime calls, so you can keep chatting without having the FaceTime app occupying your screen and restricting you from using other applications.
Implemented by Google at the end of 2019, password monitoring is a feature Safari is also getting. The function will notify users when a password they are using has been compromised.
Paula is an outstanding reporter for Henri Le Chat Noir, always finding new and interesting topics to bring to the portal. She mostly crafts Science and Technology news articles, covering everything one needs to know about those niches. Paula studied at Concordia University.