Apple introduced plenty of new features coming to iOS 10 this fall. I just had a chance to check it out briefly on my iPhone using the public beta of iOS 10, and I wanted to report back that widgets in iOS 10 are the real deal. They’re actually pretty awesome and finally bring the platform up to a par with that function on Android – a feature that has been held over the heads of iOS users for far too long.
Widgets appear in several places. You can access them right on the lock screen with a quick swipe to the right, for example, where you’ll see controls for Music (if it’s open), a weather widget, a calendar, Siri app suggestions, a News widgets, Maps and more. There are already third party applications, too, like support for Google Maps with transit direction, Kindle, Amazon, ESPN Fantasy Football and more (these are just the ones I see on my phone.) They’re basically the widgets that once existed inside the notification panel, but are seemingly much more useful.
They also exist within the icons of each application that offers a widget. Use 3D Touch on Apple Music, for example, and you can quickly tap into a curated playlist or one of your own saved playlists. In Photos, you’ll see some of your memories (I don’t have any yet), or view headlines in News. The Phone icon has a “Favorites” widget, while Notes will show you the latest Note you took.
These are just a few examples, but they’re pretty useful and I think iOS 10 users are going to enjoy them. No, you still can’t create a homescreen full of widgets placed exactly where you want them, but I don’t think Apple is ever going to go down that road. Check out a few examples in my gallery above, or browse through other iOS 10 pictures in the gallery below.