iOS 8.1 and OS X Yosemite Update: Should You Install Apple's Latest Software?

( [email protected] ) Oct 20, 2014 11:50 PM EDT
OS X Yosemite

Apple's two new software updates were announced at the Apple event earlier last week, so we wanted to break them down and explain the basics of each, and let you know if you should fight that temptation to upgrade right away or not.

OS X Yosemite

The newest version of the OS X desktop operating system, known as Yosemite, was made available during the Apple event last Thursday. It's a free download and it brings with it a host of new features.

One of the most fundamental improvments to the operating system is its integration with mobile devices. Apple realizes that everything is turning to mobile these days, so they reworked the desktop OS to cooperate with the mobile OS 8 software.

The two biggest components of this integration are iCloud Drive and Continuity. 

iCloud Drive lets you store files to be accessed by any of your Apple devices -- and up to six accounts, thanks to the Family Sharing feature. So instead of emailing those pictures you took on your phone, you can store them in your iCloud account with its free 5GB of storage, and access them from any of your Apple devices from iPhones to iPads. 

With Continuity, there's a tighter connection between your desktop and your mobile device. Continuity allows you to do some amazing things like continue reading something you started on your iMac over to your iPhone right where you left off. Through a feature called Handoff, you can continue reading books, email, webpages, and more from device to desktop and vice versa.

Continuity also allows you to send and receive voice calls and text messages on your desktop. The catch, of course, is that voice calls need to be made to an iPhone running iOS 8, but SMS texts can be sent to any device.

Yosemite also brings an improved Spotlight, beefier Safari browser, upgraded Messages app, Mail with iCloud integration, and more. While most of what Yosemite brings is simple improvements to existing features, it's really a must-have for those using multiple Apple desktops and devices and want to better integrate them to work together more efficiently.

iOS 8.1

While iOS 8 was introduced last month with the iPhone 6, it was probably one of them worst iOS launches to date. Some users reported a loss of cellular service with the 8.0.1 patch, so that was taken down only an hour after release. iOS 8 also removed Camera Roll, which caught many customers by surprise.

Fortunately, Apple was listening and they're bringing Camera Roll back with this iOS 8.1 update. The new patch also brings Yosemite integration with it, as well as the iCloud Library for cloud storage between devices.

Apple Pay will come standard with iOS 8.1, allowing a mobile digital wallet on your device. In conjunction with over 500 banks, Apple Pay uses your iPhone, iPad, or even Apple Watch as a way to make payments at participating retail stores.

Overall, iOS 8.1 fixes everything that iOS 8 broke, so if you were soured on iOS 8 with your new iPhone 6 or 6 Plus, iOS 8.1 should revitalize your faith in Apple. 

iOS 8.1 have started rolling out on Monday, October 20.