iOS 7 Beta 3 Improvements or Status Quo?

ios_7_icon-250x249Beta 3 of Apple’s next version of its mobile OS – iOS 7 – was released on 2013-07-08. Let’s take a quick look at how things are progressing

 

 

Introduction

If you recall, I posted a tear down of Apple’s latest mobile operating system – iOS 7 – a few days ago. Beta 1 of the OS was usable, but it was painful. Beta 2 made things a bit better, but the experience was still FAR from what you would expect from a completed system, meaning that Apple still had a great bit of work to do. Apple released the third seed in its iOS 7 development effort on 2013-07-08. Let’s take a quick peek at how things are progressing.

Music App

The Music app has seen a slight redesign from Betas 1 and 2. It has new icons and a rearranged set of controls. Ratings have also been reimplemented. I have almost 10 gigabytes of music on my iPhone. Without a doubt, music takes up the bulk of my onboard storage. Every time I restore my iPhone, it takes quite a bit of time to sync all of my content back to the phone.

I installed iOS 7 Beta 3 Monday 2013-07-08, late in the evening. I went to bed before midnight. When I got up at 4:30am Central the next morning, I expected all of my content to be restored to the device. It wasn’t. I started the sync again and saw content come over to the device. While it didn’t finish the sync before I had to leave for work, about 1/2 of my music had been synchronized to the device. Unfortunately, I found that none of it was actually recognized as being on board. It became clear to me that in order to be able to listen to my music, I’d have to blow the device and set it up as a new iPhone. Thankfully, though that process took a while, it solved the problem.

iOS-7-beta-3-launched-with-problems

Podcasts

Apple’s Podcasts app is now functional. However, I initially had issues with my synched content being recognized by the app. As I stated above, it was for this reason that I had to blow my iPhone again, reinstall iOS 7 Beta 3 and setup my iPhone 5 as a new iPhone.

Calendar

Calendar’s Month View has been updated to include a display artifact to indicate which days have scheduled events. The Calendar app is still a bit touchy. Its force closed on me more than once when trying to go from the default Day View to Month View.

Redesigned Fonts

One of the biggest points made with iOS 7 is its redesigned interface, which includes a thinned out, flat look. Many of the fonts used in Betas 1 and 2 have been replaced in beta 3 with a heavier weighted font. While thinner fonts make for a cleaner interface, heavier fonts provide increased readability. This is a much welcomed change in Beta 3, as the display in the first two betas was difficult to read.

You can see clear evidence of the heavier fonts in Messages, Weather and Notification Center. You should also have an easier time reading the Settings menu as well.

Apple also increased the size of the font used in the status bar, making your carrier name, signal strength, remaining battery life , etc. easier to read.

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