Apple packs plenty of features into new products and new OS versions every year. Maybe the marketing budget gets used up and the company has to rely on Apple.com webpages to reveal those features. One of my favorite iPhone features
is was 3D Touch.
What did 3D Touch do? Ask around. Most iPhone customers have no idea. In fact, as you ask around about the various iPhone multitouch interface gestures, you’re likely to uncover a growing number of blank stares.
Apple hides features.
3D Touch is gone in iOS 13 and iPhone 11 models in favor of the much easier to figure out– and probably less expensive to manufacture– Haptic Touch.
Haptic Touch? What’s that? I think it’s the long press. Or, maybe the long press is Haptic Touch. Dan Moren kinda sorta mostly explains:
The long press expands upon the Haptic Touch features introduced in last year’s iPhone XR, as well as absorbing the now deprecated 3D Touch hardware-based features first introduced in the iPhone 6s.
iPhone 6s? Haptic Touch has been around that long? What did it do? No matter. Let’s not go backward. Let’s go forward to now.
The long press—= or tap and hold—- essentially acts like a right-click/control-click/two-finger-click does on the Mac, bringing up a contextual menu of additional options.
Now, there is something intuitive about just pressing and holding and once you’ve done it a few times then you start expecting a press and hold to reveal other options. Sometimes it does. Sometimes it does not.
Here are two examples that will make you smile.
Tapping and holding on a message in Messages, for example, gives you Tapback options, as well as an old-style popover menu of options like Copy. And that long press on a song in the Music app brings up a long list of actions that are usually only accessible in other places via the Share button, which in other places requires an additional tap.
Alright. Back to the original premise. Why Apple hides features.
Digital ink is inexpensive and digging around can find a lengthy list of the latest new features for iOS 13 on Apple’s very own website.
New features available with iOS 13
There you have it. Not all the new features, but most of them; or, perhaps many of them, but certainly more than we had at this time last year, right?
Why does Apple hide features in plain sight every year?
Apple is embarrassed. Embarrassed? Yes.
The iPhone and Mac and iPad and Watch maker talks about how it just works and how magical everything is when it isn’t. It’s difficult to remember all those features, so if Apple says new features are easy and then gives customers a gigantic humongous list– well, everyone knows a long list isn’t easy to master, let alone remember– the company might find itself on 60-Minutes with some ‘splainin to do.
So, instead of telling customers where to find the lists, Apple just puts them online and hopes we’ll find them and spread the news.
We do. But not enough.