7 Quality of Life Features iOS 18 Stole From Android

WWDC 2024 had a tad too many surprises, bringing several quality-of-life features to iOS 18. Android users have been enjoying quite a lot of these features for years now. So, while it wasn’t a surprise to them, iOS users surely were over the moon about it all. With that being said, here are the top iOS 18 Android-inspired features that made my eyes shine ever so brightly!

1. Home Screen Personalization

Home screen personalization on iOS 18

The WWDC 2024 event saw quite a few features that have been available to Android users for years now. Well, home screen personalization is one of them. For starters, you can finally place an app icon anywhere on your iPhone home screen.

iOS has kept such an incredibly simple yet super useful functionality at bay for so long for who knows what reason. Congratulations, iOS users.

In addition, you can also tint the home screen app icons and widgets any color, which extends up to the app library section of iOS. This is super cool, and adds a certain level of charm to iOS now, which was missing.

2. T9 Search in Dialer

T9 Prediction in dialer on iOS 18

It’s surprising that Apple has held back on introducing something as basic as this for so long that it’s obsolete at this point. T9 in the dialer makes finding contacts and giving them a call super easy and fast.

Since time immemorial, iOS users have had to head over to contacts and look for a contact manually to do so. Super annoying, yes. iOS 18 changes that, and now, users can simply start typing a number in the dialer and close matches to it will show up at the top.

While it’s as simple as that, it’s a game-changer for iOS users. Android users have had this for so long that they forgot about its existence in the first place.

3. Call Recording and Transcription

Call recording on iOS 18
Image Courtesy: Apple

While it may seem hilarious at first, believe it or not, iOS users haven’t had call recording for all these years. Android users are surely laughing in the corner. But, iOS 18 has finally brought the functionality and of course, it’s a super useful feature that every smartphone should have.

Previously, the only way to do some call recording of sorts was the Voicemail feature, which worked well enough too. But, then again, it’s not call recording, per se. So, it’s definitely good to get a dedicated feature for the same.

I also like how Apple tries to own things by giving it something extra. So, with call recording, you also get call transcription, which is available for voicemail recordings too. This is an Apple Intelligence feature that will be limited to the iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max models.

However, the call transcription will be carried out by the Notes app. Once you record a call, it will be sent to Notes automatically for transcription. Nevertheless, it’s very useful since it summarizes entire calls for you too.

4. Lock and Hide Apps

Hide and Lock apps in iOS 18

App locking and hiding has been around for quite some time now. While Google Pixel doesn’t offer app locking, it recently brought the Private Space feature to hide apps on Android 15. However, other skins like OxygenOS, FuntouchOS, and HyperOS offer their renditions of app locking.

This is a very useful feature that lets you hand over your phone to someone without having to worry too much about what they may stumble upon. Moreover, information of hidden apps won’t even appear anywhere, like in the notifications. Hidden apps are then moved to a hidden apps folder, which will require Face ID to get through.

If you ask me, app locking and hiding is core privacy and security feature that no smartphone should miss out on. So, iOS 18 bringing both of these features sure did make me happy.

5. RCS Messaging

RCS Messaging iOS 18
Image Courtesy: Apple

Well, we did see this coming, didn’t we? For years, Apple has been ridiculed for not providing RCS (Rich Communication Services) protocol support to its Messages app. For those unaware, while iOS users could text Android users and vice versa, longer messages were shortened and image/video files were terribly compressed, thereby compromising their quality.

Now, with RCS protocol arriving to iMessages, users can do all of that without any limits. Moreover, they will also be end-to-end encrypted now. In simpler words, full-blown cross-platform chats are finally actually coming to iOS 18-running devices.

The texts and audio messages sent from an Android device will still appear green though. Anyway, thanks to EU regulators as well, who pushed Apple into doing bringing this feature. A win-win in my books.

6. Game Mode

7 Quality of Life Features iOS 18 Stole From Android

The Android vs iOS debate has always sparked one question – which is better for gaming? While Apple’s Bionic chipsets have always been ahead in the performance race, they have lacked features to back it up. iOS users have had a gaming-focused mode that only silenced notifications.

But, this time, iOS 18 brings a dedicated Game Mode, which pauses background activity as well as minimizes latency (only for AirPods Pro Gen 2). In addition, the Game Mode also reduces latency for wireless controllers.

While it doesn’t offer all those touch sensitivity enhancing or other features like Android skins do, it’s still a good start. Most importantly, it goes to show that Apple is finally acknowledging the importance of gaming. With titles like Resident Evil 4 Remake, Assassin’s Creed Mirage and the upcoming Assassin’s Creed Shadows available to play on iOS, it only makes sense for Apple to make this move.

7. iPhone-Mac Mirroring

iPhone to Mac Mirroring on macOS Sequoia
Image Courtesy: Apple

This is a bit trickier to explain, but I’ll try my best. So, back in 2015, Google decided that screen mirroring was useless and like all good things that it has scraped over the years, they got rid of it too with Marshmallow.

But, Android skins like OneUI (Smart View feature) by Samsung bring screen mirroring to the table. So, understandably, that also allows you to drag and drop files alongside making use of the clipboard and notification sync.

You also have Windows Phone Link that is integrated within phones like the latest Vivo X Fold 3 Pro, which allows you to make use of screen mirroring as well. While it’s not as good as Samsung’s Smart View, it brings the functionality nevertheless.

So, I was very thrilled to see Apple introducing iPhone mirroring onto Mac with macOS Sequoia. Moreover, it improves on the feature and keeps the mirroring active even when you turn your iPhone display off. This is something that Phone Link and even OPPO’s multi-screen connect lacks.

Apple has always had its focus on building a solid ecosystem. The addition of this feature has been the final move in favor of it, from the looks of it, for it further solidifies Apple’s ecosystem features.

In my opinion, Apple is gradually leading iOS into its Androidification stage, and I like every bit of it. It’s also surprising how some of these essential features like T9 search in dialer, RCS messaging, and screen recording have been kept away from iOS users for so long.

I could hear all the iOS users in our office cheer big time when these features were announced at WWDC 2024. Apple, you have definitely done something right here, and please don’t take a couple of steps back in the next one.

Well, what do you think about all the Android-inspired iOS 18 features we got to see? Which is your favorite one on this list? Do let me know in the comments down below!

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