When you think innovation, you think Apple. The tech giant announced the next major software upgrade for the iPhoneiOS 18 at the company’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) 2024 keynote event held on Monday. Craig Federighi, Apple SVP of software engineering, showcased all the new improvements and upgrades coming to Apple’s apps and the operating system.

Artificial intelligence and Generative AI features are the core focal points in the iOS 18 update. Like the iPad and Mac, iPhones will also have “Apple Intelligence” when the new software update rolls out this fall. With its iOS 18, Apple promises that its comprehensive new AI features will help you send emails, save time, and express yourself with easy-to-use prompts.

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What To Expect

I’m excited that we’ll introduce profound new intelligence capabilities that we hope will inspire developers, delight users, and make our platforms even smarter and more useful than ever,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said during the keynote event. “iOS 18 is a big release that delivers more ways to customize your iPhone, stay connected and relive special moments,” said Craig.

Let’s take you through some of the key new changes, features and updates in Apple iOS 18:

Customizable Home & Lock Screens

iOS 18 will let you customize your home screen’s apps and their layout, as well as your phone’s lock screen functions. Previously, these icons would fill your home screen from top to bottom, sometimes obstructing backgrounds you might like. You can now arrange your iPhone’s apps and widgets on your home screen as you please.

You can also easily customize your app’s icons by giving them a dark mode filter or tinting them to match your wallpaper. iOS 18 will also let you swap out the camera and flashlight functions on your iPhone’s lock screen. That way you aren’t accidentally turning on your iPhone’s flashlight while putting it in your pocket.

Apple iOS 18 software update new features changes upgrade Generative AI customise home lock screen

Updated Control Center

With iOS18, you can access more controls for things, like whatever music you’re listening to and specific apps. You can also change which apps you see, as well as their size, so you have quicker access to the buttons you use more often.

Photos App Gets A Makeover

Apple iPhone cameras are the envy of many. It is one of its key USPs. Being an iPhone user, you’re bound to have a gallery filled with your favourite memories. However, navigating through the app and the sea of photos can be challenging sometimes. iOS 18 will redesign your Photos app, making it easier to find specific photos.

You will be able to organize your photos month-wise, year-wise, and by theme. So, if you’re looking for photos from a particular trip, you should be able to find them faster. The new software update will also let you filter out receipts and screenshots so they don’t clog up your Library.

Apple iOS 18 software update new features changes upgrade Generative AI Photos app organise

Lock & Hide Apps

Letting someone borrow your iPhone can be a nerve-wracking experience, especially if you don’t want them to see or access certain apps. But iOS 18 will allow you to lock and hide apps. Once you lock an app, it will require your Face ID or passcode to unlock and access it.

And if you don’t want someone to know you have a certain app on your iPhone, you can stash it in a ‘Hidden Apps‘ folder in your App Library. This is similar to removing apps from your home screen without deleting them from your iPhone, but it arranges all your hidden apps in one place.

Introducing “Passwords”

Apple is turning its password keychain feature into a full-blown app, called “Passwords.” According to the tech giant, “Passwords” safely stores all your credentials in one place. It can also sync your passwords across your Apple devices. That way if you change your Netflix password on one device but not on another, the password will follow you so you don’t forget it.

Apple iOS 18 software update new features changes upgrade Generative AI Passwords app

Hands-Free Siri Interactions

The combination of iOS 18 and the second generation of AirPods Pro, will enable you to interact with Siri by nodding or shaking your head. So if you need to be quiet because the baby is sleeping, or your partner is on an important phone call, you can keep Siri working without saying a word.

“Messages” Gets An Upgrade

Now, you’ll be able to schedule messages to send later, react to messages with more Tapbacks and format messages and specific words with text effects. If you want to emphasize something in a text, you can bold it, underline it or use other effects. Apple might also bring RCS (Rich Communication Support) – to Messages. iOS 18 introduces Messages via satellite for when cellular and Wi-Fi connections aren’t available.

Apple iOS 18 software update new features changes upgrade Generative AI Messages app

Game Mode

Game Mode will minimize background activities on your iPhone to improve your game’s performance. It will also have improved responsiveness with AirPods and wireless gaming controllers.

Notes App Upgrades

Notes will get live audio transcripts, collapsible sections to keep the app organized and the ability to highlight certain phrases. You’ll also be able to solve mathematical problems in the app while you type.

A More Organized Mail

Apple said that with iOS 18, your iPhone’s Mail app will organize your emails better. It’ll have new categories for things like receipts, newsletters and more. That way you don’t have to dig through your emails and find an invitation to a party you forgot to respond to.

Apple iOS 18 software update new features changes upgrade Generative AI Mail

Tap To Cash

With iOS 18, you can easily send cash to your friends and family with the “Tap to Cash” feature. Send Apple Cash directly to others by bringing your iPhones close together – similar to how you can quickly AirDrop/ NameDrop a photo or message or your contact information to others.

Apple Wallet

Speaking of cash, your Wallet app is also getting an upgrade in iOS 18. You’ll now be able to view your rewards or points balance, which can be redeemed with Apple Pay online or in one of your apps. Apple Wallet will also let you access any installment financing options your bank might offer. The tech company mentioned that the new features includes, “an event guide combining helpful information about the venue with recommendations from Apple apps.

Safari Gets Highlights

With iOS 18, your iPhone’s Safari app will detect important information on a page and highlight it for you. For example, directions and quick links to people and movies will be highlighted and easily findable. “Reader” will also provide a table of contents and summaries of articles in Safari.

Apple iOS 18 software update new features changes upgrade Generative AI Safari

Journal App Improvements

Once upgraded, the Journal app will let you log your state of mind, as well as help you track your goals. It will also give you certain stats, like writing streaks. You’ll also be able to search within Journal for previous entries so you can find older thoughts and more.

Emergency SOS Live Video 

This feature allows you to share context through streaming video and recorded media. During an emergency call, dispatchers can request live video or media from the user’s camera roll over a secure connection, making it easier and faster to get help.

Topographic Apple Maps

When Apple introduced iOS 17 in 2023, it brought offline maps to the iPhone Maps app. With iOS 18, the app will get topographical information, too. Maps will also get detailed hiking trail information, including hiking routes from over 50 US national parks.

Apple iOS 18 software update new features changes upgrade Generative AI Topography Apple Maps

The Home App 

iOS 18 introduces guest access, providing users with easy ways to grant guests control of select smart home accessories, set schedules for when guests can access the home, and more. For an effortless home entry experience, hands-free unlock with home keys leverages Ultra Wideband technology to allow users to instantly open supported entry locks as soon as they are six feet away from their door. With convenient updates to the Energy category, the Home app makes it easier for eligible users to access, understand, and make more informed decisions about their home electricity use.


The updates include Eye Tracking. It’s a built-in option for navigating the iPhone with just eyes. Music Haptics is a new way for users who are deaf or hard of hearing to experience music using the Taptic Engine in iPhone. Vocal Shortcuts enable users to perform tasks by making a custom sound.

Apple Intelligence

Built with privacy from the ground up, Apple Intelligence unlocks new ways for users to enhance their writing and communicate more effectively. With brand-new systemwide Writing Tools built into iOS 18, users can rewrite, proofread, and summarise text nearly everywhere they write, including Mail, Notes, Pages, and third-party apps.

Apple Intelligence can also pick out the best photos and videos based on the description, craft a storyline with chapters based on themes identified from the photos, and arrange them into a movie with its own narrative arc. In addition, a new Clean Up tool can identify and remove distracting objects in the background of a photo — without accidentally altering the subject.

With Image Playground, users can create playful images in seconds, choosing from three styles: Animation, Illustration, or Sketch. This feature is built right into apps like Messages and is also available as a dedicated app. Apple sets a new standard for privacy in AI with Private Cloud Compute. Apple Intelligence will allow you to create new images called Genmojis. The tech giant said these improvements will be available only on the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max. 

Integrated ChatGPT

With ChatGPT from OpenAI integrated into Siri and Writing Tools, you get even more expertise when it might be helpful for you — no need to jump between tools. Siri can tap into ChatGPT for certain requests, including questions about photos or documents. And with ‘Compose‘ in Writing Tools, you can create and illustrate original content from scratch. You control when ChatGPT is used and will be asked before any of your information is shared.

Apple iOS 18 software update new features changes upgrade Generative  AI ChatGPT OpenAI

How exciting are these upcoming features? We can’t wait for the Apple iOS 18 update to roll out on all phones soon!