Months of beta testing has finally culminated with the official release of iOS 7.1 to the public, Apple’s biggest update to iOS 7 since its launch last September.
The update doesn’t come with big new features, but Jony Ive and the software team have made a ton of small design tweaks, most notably in areas like the Phone app, shutdown interface, calendar, as well as a number of Accessibility options that tweak the UI further with Button Shapes and darker colors and improved contrast.
Here’s a rundown of all the design tweaks you’ll be getting on your iPhone today:
New Power Off UI
New HDR Auto Mode
Apple added a new HDR Auto mode to iOS 7.1 that automatically chooses the best photo from your HDR snap. You can toggle HDR Auto off by just switching to “HDR On” if you want the camera to save all 3 exposures to your camera roll with the option to expand and view each frame. The switching UI is a bit confusing at first, so hopefully Apple makes some improvements before final release.
Confused whether some of the text floating around in iOS 7 is just a label or a button? Yeah, you’re not alone and it looks like Apple has a quick fix. iOS 7.1 introduces a new Accessibility feature that turns on button shapes. While most buttons get a grey shading, other button shapes consist of a simple underlining of text – like the Send button in Messages and devices in the AirPlay menu.
Calendar Is More Useable
Calendar still needs a lot of attention but the update adds one desperately lacking feature: List View. You can toggle the setting next to search button to see the list view of your activities for the day while the full calendar remains in view.
You can also switch over to just viewing your activities in the list view as well.
Tweaked Control Center
Apple added a new bounce animation when you pull up Control Center. The audio controls section now has a label display which app is currently playing sound.
The volume and brightness sliders in Control Center gained accelerated sliding so you can flick them like lists and pages.
One of the welcomed tweaks are the faster animations. Animations for opening folders, apps, pulling up Spotlight, Multitasking, and more feel a micro-second faster.
The cloud icons in the Weather app have been filled in with color as well as the sun and the moon.
Another new Accessibility option added to iOS 7.1 essentially darkens the entire OS by giving users the options to Reduce Transparency, turning the dock and folder backgrounds a dark grey. You can choose to darken colors in iOS 7.1 too.
Apple also added controls that increase contrast throughout the UI. You can now choose to Reduce Transparency to improve contrast on some backgrounds so you can read text better. There’s also an option to darken colors if iOS 7 is just too damn bright.
Burst Photo Uploads
Burst mode on the iPhone 5s is awesome for making sure you capture the perfect moment with a machine gun barrage of frames, but also those burst mode scenes eat up storage. Now you can choose whether or not to upload Burst Mode Photos to your PhotoStream.
Yahoo’s logo has been updated throughout the operating system to reflect its new design:
Flickr Gets More Minimal
Flickr’s logo in iOS 7.1 Settings has lost its gradient and app icon border, replaced with more minimalist white space to go with its blue and pink dots.
New Call Dialer
New Phone Buttons
Disable Parallax On Lock Or Home Screen
Tweaked Keyboard Design
Heavier contrast. The delete and shift keys have different highlights too.
Apple’s green icons (Messages, Phone, FaceTime) have been made a little darker.
New Buttons In Music App
“Reduce White Point” In Accessibility
The setting makes the general whiteness of iOS 7 a little duller.