Apple has also applied the flat design language to all of its core apps, which has made significant strides in overall usability. By favoring solid colors and simplified iconography, navigating menus and making selections is more streamlined. Sharp lines and colorful text pop amidst the white backgrounds that extends to most OS-level apps, highlighting important information.
Blurred, translucent shapes are also prevalent across the new design. Folders, dropdown menus, and volume animations are all cast upon an obscured view of your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch's wallpaper. I use a blue geometric wallpaper on my iPhone, and as a result, much of the interface takes on a blueish hue. It's a clever way to allow users to personalize their device in a way that extends across many facets of the UI, while maintaining unified visual style. The only instance when I found the blurred backdrop to be especially invasive is when you're adjusting volume when viewing a fullscreen video — not only is the video obscured by the logo and level bar, but the blurred backdrop. A minor gripe perhaps, but an example of how iOS 7's design sometimes favors form over function.
Another purely superficial element of iOS 7 is the parallax effect on the home screen. Using the iPhone's motion sensors, iOS 7 creates the illusion of depth by moving your wallpaper based on the tilt and angle of the device. The effect is somewhat distracting and seems like an unnecessary use of processing resources, but fortunately, can be disabled from within your device's accessibility settings.
Hundreds of these small design choices amass for a notably more arresting and practical user experience. While certainly not as bold as Windows Phone or as free form as Android, iOS 7 carries a potent blend of stylization and utility.
Of course, the Control Center concept isn't new to the world of smartphones — Android users have been enjoying similar functionality for years — but iOS 7 brings the two operating systems closer to parity.
AirDrop and iTunes Radio
Performance and Battery Life
iOS 7 is a notable leap forward for the platform — not just in terms of form, but function. Even with the significant design and feature improvements, however, there's still room to grow. Apple still lags behind Google's deep integration of unified cloud services on Android, and iOS remains somewhat of a tightly regulated ecosystem. With Apple's recent leadership shakeups, hopefully future iterations will see more drastic expansions.
Nonetheless, iOS remains an exceptional mobile platform made even better by a new, more modern design and useful feature additions.