iOS 10 will make you love your lockscreen

IMG_0238.0 W020160708369282105652

Apple is gearing up to launch iOS 10 this fall, and will deliver many changes to the software used daily by hundreds of millions of people. You can see some of these changes right now via the public beta of iOS 10 that was released this week. I wouldn’t recommend installing it on your phone right now — the beta is very unfinished and there are lots of bugs — but it can give you an idea of what’s to come.

iOS 10 has a laundry list of new features and changes, including a completely revamped messaging platform, the ability to remove some of Apple’s preinstalled apps, and lots of new 3D touch actions. You can read more about them here. But the thing that’s first noticeable and is going to change how you interact with your iPhone every single time you pick it up is the completely redesigned lockscreen.

The trademark slide-to-unlock gesture that’s been a signature of the iPhone’s interface since 2007 is now gone. Instead, the new lockscreen is more proactive — the phone comes on automatically when you lift it up, showing you all of your notifications and missed messages right away. Those notifications are more powerful than before, letting you 3D touch to see a message thread or dive into your calendar, all without unlocking your phone.

Swipe left to right, as you’ll certainly do the first time you use iOS 10 (and likely for many more times after that), and you’ll be greeted with a new page of widgets that can tell you upcoming events, weather, nearby destinations, and more. Swipe the opposite direction from the lockscreen to launch the camera, replacing the vertical swipe of earlier versions of iOS.

To actually get to your homescreen and its familiar grid of app icons, iOS 10 makes you forcibly click the home button. It will then read your fingerprint on the TouchID sensor or prompt you to enter the PIN code to unlock the phone. In earlier versions of iOS, it was easy to never see your lockscreen, simply because waking the screen with the home button would result in the TouchID sensor reading your fingerprint and unlocking the phone. In iOS 10, the phone is already awake before you even bring it up to your face.

 This is an important distinction — iOS 10 now forces you to look at what’s on your lockscreen before you get past it. Your lockscreen is now your hub of information, whether it’s missed notifications front and center, or upcoming events and other information a swipe to the right away.

It makes the lock screen way more important than the grid of apps you have behind it. They’re still there, they still matter, but now using your iPhone is finally, truly something more than jumping into an app, back home, and into another app. With the new widgets (which, by they way, are also available to the left of that grid of icons), your apps feel like they’re finally part of the whole phone, just locked away behind an icon. We’ve seen widgets on Android and iOS before, but they’ve never been this prominently or intelligently integrated into the core of how your use your phone.



Comments are closed.