iOS 7: first impressions of the Metro-ized iOS

Summary:I installed iOS 7 for my iPad and for my iPhone. My first thought was, 'OMG, it's Windows 8.' No 'live' tiles but still the look and feel of Windows 8. Looks like Apple is a fan of Metro, even if Windows users aren't.

Can I say that I like iOS 7 without having rotten tomatoes thrown at me? Probably not, so I'll don a raincoat and a laboratory face shield and say, "I like iOS 7". Even if you like iOS 7 too, you're not going to like the reason that I like it. I like it because it looks and acts like Windows 8. There, I said it. It looks and acts like Windows 8. So what? There's nothing wrong with it looking and acting like Windows 8. I think it's a good thing.

I can hear the knuckle-cracking and drink pouring already, while you prepare yourself to assault me with anti-Windows 8 rhetoric but, if you're honest with yourself, you'll admit that I'm right.

All iOS versions before 7 seemed a bit heavy. This one feels lighter, faster, and more mobile device compatible. Don't get me wrong, iOS is a cool operating system even at its clunkiest but 7 is smooth. iOS 7 is Metro for the Apple crowd. 

And I'll bet you a thousand Rupees that the next Mac OS comes out looking very similar to Windows 8 and iOS 7. Since Apple uses big cats for its OS X versions and the new look and feel is very similar to Metro, I'd like to call it MeOwS MiX. 

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My favorite thing about iOS 7 is the way you kill apps, by just tossing them away out the top of your phone. No more hold, shake, and kill. I always thought that was a little weird. I'm happier now. In fact, the way you kill apps is vaguely (OK, blatantly) like tossing out YouTube videos that you're through watching. Have you noticed that?

I like that I can swipe through my open apps and then tap to bring it to focus. That part feels very Android-esque to me. But, in general, the whole iOS 7 experience feels very Windows 8.

My middle son and daughter both agree with me about the whole Windows 8 thing too.

"iOS 7 is Metro for the Apple crowd."

In fact, my son came home from school and said, "I've been enjoying iOS 7 today." To which I responded, "Did you notice how much like Windows 8 it is?" "Yes", was his immediate response, "Yes, it is". My daughter chimed in with, "Hey, yeah, it is like Windows 8".

So, it isn't just me and I feel totally justified in making that assertion.

Oh, and the fact that someone has already discovered a security flaw convinces me that iOS 7 is very similar to Windows 8. I won't go so far as to say that iOS 7 is based on Metro or aims to be a better Metro; I just think it bears noticing that they are similar.

Even if you don't agree and think that I'm coming out of left field, it's OK. You and I are both enjoying iOS 7 for what it is: a new iOS version. And that's fun, don't you think?

Does the Control Center make you think Charms Bar?

I like the Control Center. It's something that's been sadly missing from iOS from the beginning. We needed quick access to those things without all the swiping, wiping, and tapping through a bunch of stuff to enter Airplane mode, to turn on/off WiFi, to enable/disable Bluetooth, or to change brightness.

And I really love having the flashlight and stopwatch right there. Talk about handy. The calculator is another much used item for me. I'm always fumbling around looking for that thing when I need it at the grocery store or at home for calculating the cryptic way school grades are delivered to me. What does 33/46 mean to me without a calculator?

 I'm happy with iOS 7 and if you have an iPhone, iPad, or, iPod that's supported and iOS 7 capable, go for it. It doesn't take long to upgrade and I think you'll love the "new" look and feel. Heck, at its worst, it could make you embrace Windows 8 and Metro. Thanks Apple. I'm sure Microsoft is smiling today too.

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Topics: Apple, Microsoft, Mobility, Operating Systems, Windows 8

About

Kenneth 'Ken' Hess is a full-time Windows and Linux system administrator with 20 years of experience with Mac, Linux, UNIX, and Windows systems in large multi-data center environments.

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