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Here’s a look at the key highlights of iOS 7.1

Apple has released iOS 7.1, the first major update to its mobile operating system iOS 7, which was released in September 2013. 

For those familiar with Windows, iOS 7.1, in a way is a service pack that addresses performance-related annoyances and allows users to turn off some of the fancy visual enhancements. It also brings a big feature that allows the iPhone to become an integral part of a car’s in-dash entertainment and information system.
iOS 7.1: 8 key enhancementsHere’s a look at the key highlights of iOS 7.1:
CarPlay

iOS 7.1 brings support for the recently announced CarPlay (Apple’s name for its ‘iOS-in-the-car’ solution).CarPlay is essentially a hardware and software solution built into the car. Once the iPhone is connected to a vehicle with CarPlay integration, Siri, helps users access contacts, make calls, return missed calls or listen to voicemails. When incoming messages or notifications arrive, Siri responds to requests through voice commands, and reads drivers’ messages.
Cars that support the feature will come out later this year.
User Interface changes

iOS 7.1 brings a number of visual changes including better contrast, the option to customize the shade of white (with White Point) and darken colours. Some green coloured icons sport darker shades.
The call answer button, Power off button and answer and reject call buttons now sport a round design instead of the rectangular one.
Transition effects and bounce animations are smoother compared to iOS 7.
User Interface changes
Visual enhancements

Apple has also made minor changes to the system-wide keyboard giving the Shift and Delete keys more prominence.
Apple has also introduced a setting to turn off the parallax effect (Perspective zoom) when a user changes the background wallpaper.
The OS also allows users to turn on ‘Button Shapes’ to get iOS 6-like buttons instead of the text-only buttons.
Visual enhancements


Auto-HDR

iOS 7.1 brings the ability to automatically enable HDR (High Dynamic Range) mode on iPhone 5S. The feature allows the phone to automatically detect if a photo would benefit from the HDR mode and turn it on without the user needing to manually enable it. Similar to the way users tweak LED flash settings, they can tap on the HDR label and choose to turn it on, off or on HDR Auto mode.
By default, iOS 7.1 turns the Auto mode on. The HDR mode captures multiple exposures to depict varying intensity.
Auto-HDR

Performance improvements for iPhone 4

The oldest iPhone to get iOS 7 will also receive iOS 7.1 update. In fact, iOS 7.1 improves responsiveness and performance of iPhone 4, according to Apple. A number of iPhone 4 users had complained of their phones becoming sluggish after iOS 7 update. Incidentally, iPhone 4 still doesn’t get some of the features introduced in iOS 7 including transition animations and other visual effects
Improved Touch ID support & stability

Some iPhone 5S users had complained about the Touch ID sensor not working properly after some months and failing to recognize registered fingerprints. it appears that the issue is not related to hardware as iOS 7.1 improves the fingerprint recognition capability of iPhone 5S Touch ID sensor. iOS 7.1 also brings stability improvements and fixes the home screen crash bug. A large number of iPhone 5S users were reporting random crashes while using their iPhones.
Manual control for Siri

iOS 7.1 introduces manual control for the Siri voice assistant. Think of it as push-to-talk. Users can now make Siri listen to their commands by holding down the Home button while speaking and releasing it when they’re done. It is an alternative to allowing Siri automatically notice when users stop talking aimed at improving voice detection, and will make the service more accurate.
iOS 7.1 also introduces more natural sounding male and female voices for Mandarin Chinese, UK English, Australian English, and Japanese.
Native apps enhanced

The Calendar app now offers the option to display events in month view and display events in a list view. It also adds country-specific holidays for many countries (Apple didn’t share the names). The update also fixes display of Mail unread badge for numbers greater than 10,000. It also launches iCloud Keychain (a way to store and recall passwords in the cloud) support in additional countries.iOS 7.1 also improves iTunes Radio (not available in India).
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