Apple to release iOS 10 on September 13, macOS Sierra on September 20

Apple iOS 10 will arrive next Wednesday, with the new macOS Sierra slated for release the following Wednesday.

iphone-7-and-iphone-7-plus.jpg

The new iPhone 7 will come with iOS 10.

Jason Cipriani/ZDNet

Apple will release iOS 10 for the iPhone, iPad and iPod on 13 September, following it up a week later on 20 September 20 with the new macOS.

The latest version of iOS, available for iPhone 5 and up, promises a number of significant updates, including Siri's integration with third-party apps for payments and messaging, better natural speech recognition and image search.

The update will roll out to existing iPhone, iPad and iPod models next Wednesday, just ahead of the Friday retail launch of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.

There are also major updates to key Apple apps and features, such as Messages, Maps, Photos, Music, the lock screen, and 3D Touch. Some fans have been using these features in the iOS 10 public preview, but for the majority of iPhone and iPad owners, the first experience of these will be after Apple's September 13 roll out.

Just as Siri is being exposed to third-party apps, Message's makeover in iOS 10 makes it more of a platform thanks to iMessage Apps for users to send stickers, videos and music, a text-to- emoji translator, and the ability to make payments via apps such as Square Pay. Apple has released a few of its own apps in waiting for the iOS 10's release.

Apple has also prepped its Photos app to better contend with Google's popular Photos app, which offers superb image search, photo management, and automated collage and movie creation features.

Apple's new Photos app brings improved facial and object recognition to organise photos in the new People and Places albums. The Places album displays thumbnails of pictures and videos taken on a map, which can be zoomed in to. It's now also possible to search for objects such as dogs, cats, in Photos rather than by date or location. Meanwhile, Apple's answer to Google's collage, animation and movie features are inside the new Memories tab.

iOS 10 also features a redesigned Apple Music, a smarter Maps app, a new Home app for the smart home, multilingual typing, and the ability to use Apple Pay in the browser.

The following Wednesday, Apple will roll out the new macOS 10.2 Sierra. The headline feature in this update is Siri for the Mac, which enables a range of voice-activated actions, such as dictating a message or asking it to search for files.

Sierra MacOS also introduces Apple Pay to the desktop, an updated Photos in line with the iOS 10 experience, iCloud improvements, and the new Universal Clipboard which allows copying and pasting text and images between iOS and Sierra.

It also features a new browser-like tab for core Apple apps, including Maps, Mail, Pages, Numbers, Keynote, TextEdit, and some third-party apps.

Finally, Apple Watch owners will be able to unlock MacOS Sierra just by being near the Mac.

The free upgrade will be available for Macs introduced in late 2009 and later. These include:

• iMac: Late 2009 or newer

• MacBook: Late 2009 or newer

• MacBook Air: Late 2010 or newer

• MacBook Pro: Mid 2010 or newer

• Mac Mini: Mid 2010 or newer

• Mac Pro: Mid 2010 or newer

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