With iOS 10 being released to the public earlier this week, I thought I'd share some of my overall impressions of Apple's next generation mobile operating system.

  • Swipe left on the lock screen and you'll be greeted with the new lock screen widgets. So far, I haven't been able to figure out a way to work these into my normal workflow. I'd much rather just take the extra step to open up the actual app. Plus, it's super frustrating to try to scroll through the widgets and accidentally activate a widget you didn't want to open – and that happens way too often.

The new lock screen widgets in iOS 10.

  • Raise to Wake is one of my new favorite features. It definitely took some getting use to, but I love being able to check my notifications quickly without having to press a single button.
  • Stickers are a blast in iMessage ... for now. I'm not sure I see myself continuing to use them over the long haul. I'm enjoying the novelty for the moment.
  • Yes. I've spent real money on stickers. $4 to be exact. I picked up Stitch by Disney and Marvel Items of Power packs.
  • The new iMessage features are not very intuitive. I've had to help a number of my friends and family figure out how to use them. There's no clear way to organize the iMessage apps causing a really frustrating swiping experience to get to the one I want to use.
  • The additions to Photos are underwhelming. The new Memories section is nice, but I rarely think to check it. They've improved search, but I don't find myself using that feature anyways. Overall, I've been very happy with Apple's work with iCloud Photo Library, so I'm not disappointed by the lack of any substantial new Photos features.

iOS 10 tries to figure out the memories I want to see from my photos library.

  • The refinements to Apple Music look great. Still, not tempting enough to make me want to leave Spotify.
  • Overall, things feel snappier. I can't speak for any of the older iOS devices. I currently use an iPhone 6s Plus.
  • I woke up last Friday (9/9) at 3AM to pre-order an iPhone 7 Plus in Black (not Jet!). My estimated ship date read as 9/23 all week, until Thursday when I received a notification that my new phone had been shipped. A pleasant surprise indeed to get it on launch day!

I'll share my impressions of the iPhone 7 Plus next week once I have some time to mess around with it.