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So it's finally here! Apple CEO Tim Cook announced iOS 7 yesterday, hailing it as the "biggest change to iOS since the introduction of the iPhone".
It's been long-awaited and much debated but now we can finally see what all the fuss is about.
It's not going to be out for a while yet though, so now's the perfect time to learn how to create apps, on our iOS App Development Course.
We won't do that.
We're going to give you the facts (7 of them to be precise) and a quick summary of the key points you need to know about each one. Just enough knowledge to rattle out to your friends over a skinny chai latte at your local vegan coffee shop (or some other lazily stereotypical hipster activity).
So let's dive into this new apple-y world full of flat buttons, Instagram-esque camera filters and mesmerising translucent displays and see what we can find.
1/ iOS 7 New Design
This is what all the hype is mostly about, and not without reason. The entire look and feel of the system has changed dramatically - modernised even. Take a look at this comparison between the design of the iOS6 and 7 home screen:
Gone are the shadows, the bevels and the semi-bold font. In come bright colours, flat-looking buttons and a thin, stylish type-face.
Skeuomorphism is, according to Wikipedia, "a physical ornament or design on an object made to resemble another material or technique." It's a somewhat controversial design technique that has been around for centuries.
In terms of web and mobile design, skeuomorphism is most commonly referred to in terms of icons or even apps and software which use representational design elements that possess little or no functionality. You can learn all about skeuomorphism on our InDesign Training.
An example of it would be the notepad on Apple iOS devices which has been designed to look like a traditional paper notepad. There's no need for it to be designed like this, from a functionality perspective, but the way it looks makes its purpose easily identifiable. The skeuomorphic philosophy employed by Apple is a big part of their approach to making tech simple and ultra-user-friendly.
It's not just Apple that uses this technique though; it has been in use in the tech industry for years, especially with regard to buttons and icons.
But is it a good thing? Should we really be using symbols that don't mean anything in terms of the app or software?
In a new development in Apple's ongoing attempts to trademark borderline-generic terms - including "App Store" - the company has today threatened legal action against some medical suppliers including St John Ambulance and Medisave over a range of "Eye Pad" dressings - pending the success of a new trademark application.
Only recently, Microsoft criticised Apple's attempts to trademark "App Store"; and recruited a professor of linguistics to support their claim that the term is generic and can be applied to any store that sells apps, in the same way that "grocery store" can be used to describe any grocer.
However - if successful - this new move by Apple is set to establish a new legal precedent as it attempts to lay claim to the pronunciation of the name of its iconic tablet as well as just the word "iPad".
Dontcha Coppius, a spokesman for the Cupertino tech-giant, said in a statement this morning:
"These firms might not be spelling the name of their products in the same way, but consumers won't necessarily realise that if they hear the words spoken out loud. When someone says "hey, I just got two Eye Pads without even having to queue", that has the potential to devalue our brand. We're therefore looking to trademark the sound of the word "iPad" in order to protect that."
Silicon Beach Training spoke to corporate law specialist Khan Believu-Bortit about Apple's chances of success:
"I'm surprised at Apple's audacity in attempting to trademark the sound of a word, but if you look at the list of trademarks they already hold I wouldn't underestimate their chances. They have already got a trademark on Bonjour, for instance, and although this refers specifically to their networking technology, I know some of my French colleagues now greet each other very cautiously for fear of legal action."
Whilst commentators watch with interest as legal teams deliberate over Apple's latest claim, other retailers are apparently already taking action to protect themselves should the legislation pass.
Cadburys are reported to be hastily re-branding a range of hot-chocolate drinks whilst marketing teams at UK Supermarket giant Tesco have also been preparing new signage advertising "Green Tree-Based Fruit" for fear of censure over the term "Apple".
Silicon Beach Training offer a range courses including Illustrator Training, Photoshop Training and InDesign Training. We also run other useful business courses including Leadership Training, Management Training, PRINCE2 Training and MSP Training.
It's really annoying that many Apple keyboards don't have a hashtag, especially when you tweet a lot! If like me you are tired of Googling it every time you need to find it, or cutting and pasting an existing hash tag, I suggest sticking a post-it note on your Mac or printing our handy graphic.
Where is the Hashtag on my Apple Mac keyboard?
# = Alt + 3
€ = Alt + 2
© = Alt + G
• = Alt + 8
WAIT! Don't go away I've written a really simple and short tutorial on turning on your Special Character Viewer on Mac so even when you forget your keyboard shortcuts you can still find those elusive symbols easily. Also it's the only simple way of typing a % on a Mac.
All of you lovely Mac users may be interested in our training courses such as Google Analytics Training and SEO Training. Both are part of our SEO, Social Media and Internet Marketing Pick 'n' Mix training deal:
Assuming you're looking for the hashtag because you want to send a Tweet, you probably use other social media networks! Why not pimp your Google+ profile and customise your Facebook Timeline cover photo for eye catching results!