What new in iOS 8 ... a first look with an iPad 3

iOS 8 released to the general public today and after an arduous 3 hours of downloading, preparing, updating and restarting (no thanks to the downed undersea AAG cable) my iPad 3 is finally running iOS 8.

First off, the bad points - there are bugs still present in the GM release where iCloud crashed on me multiple times until I reset everything and so far it has been stable since. Things run ever to slightly slower and jittery (akin to iOS 7 before the 7.1x updates) and the iTunes store is running slower too ... but maybe thats because of traffic load to Apple servers.

Next is family sharing - I like the idea but dislike the implementation where all accounts to be linked together must be from the same region and using the same iTunes store .... I was hoping it could cross regions/countries/stores so I can combine the multiple Apple accounts I have and I can view all the content from all my accounts from a single point - no luck on that I suppose *sigh*

Good points?

New keyboard functions which used to exist only on Android platforms (don't get me started with minority Windows and BB platforms). Been testing several and may review that later. Overall, the built-in iOS keyboard with predictive text is already pretty good and does not slow down the iPad compared to others like Swiftkey or Fleksy ... or maybe I have too many keyboards installed?? I'll save that for a future post.

Another interesting thing are the new multi-touch actions in apps. Mobile safari now has hidden tabs to save space and you can switch between them by pinching two fingers quickly (do it slowly and it reverts to page zoom instead) making navigation much faster. The assistive panel now has added options to call up control center and notification center.

The built-in camera app now features a time-lapse mode for all devices (and additional slow-mo modes for iPhone 5s and 6 models) but its buggy on my iPad 3 and kept crashing. It does capture but calling the photo album directly from the camera app causes the album to crash. Opening each separately works though, weird. Late to the camera app is a timer with options for a 3 or 10 second delay upon pressing the shutter button. The tap-to-set exposure has also been improved with a small slider appearing so you can set the 'exposure' upon selecting an area or leave it to auto.

On the video side, now iTunes movies that come with iTunes extras play directly inside with the iPad!! Been waiting for this because before this it was impossible to view any additional bonus content except on desktop iTunes or using an AppleTV with the latest iOS installed. Although automatic on iPhones, it did not work at first on the iPad. I had to first disable loading videos from iCloud (i.e. do not show all purchases) then logout of iTunes store and finally reboot the iPad. After that just reverse the process of logging back into your iTunes store account and enabling iCloud streaming again. Once that is done, the little iTunes extra logo will appear and playback will start with the menu instead of just the movie.

Now on to more exploring on iOS ....

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