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I noticed that the new iOS update rolled up this morning quite by accident, and I think I got in before the masses swamped Apple’s servers. I threw it on the iPad and iPhone and so far, looks good, though I haven’t really dug in yet…

The download process: It seemed very quick, at first, then wen’t glacial about halfway through. Took about 30 minutes, but the actual update process was quick. Set-up was easy enough and the update did turn on the bluetooth, like it always does. I went ahead and fired up the iCloud files, or whatever they’re calling it these days, even though the calendars, etc. look to not be talking to the laptop now. This is supposed to be sorted with the arrival of the next OSX in a month or so. I can get by ’til then. I mostly use my calendar, notes, etc. on the iOS devices, anyway.

The look isn’t much different. The control panel is cleaned up, you can answer a text from the notifications screen. There’s the addition of a “Tips” app that I wish you could get rid of (you can’t), as well as Podcasts (which, again, you can’t delete.)

The great: Family sharing — you can share multiple iTunes accounts between family members, so now you can watch a movie, music, whatever another in the house has bought on their account. The downside — it uses the initiator of the sharing as the lead and billing for everyone’s iTunes goes through you, looks like. I’ll have to investigate.

Siri is much faster and seems to be able to handle accents a lot better. (My weird mid-Atlantic American/Scots blather confuses the ol’ iPhone most days. It also fills in as you speak, instead of waiting until you’re finished, so you can see where it’s having trouble.

The good: Voice messages in the Messages app. The health app could come in handy.

The “meh”: Addition of a timer for shooting pictures with your mug in them. Time lapse video.

Performance: On the iPhone 5s, iOS8 is giving me no dramatic change in user experience outside of the better voice recognition. On the iPad, I noted the predictive typing slowed performance waaaay the hell down and made typing in Pages almost impossible. I turned it off and it started working well. Predictive typing didn’t come into play on the phone so far today, but i turned it off anyway.

Battery life seems a bit low, but then again, I’m playing with the devices pretty much constantly today to see what they could do so take that into account.

Overall, very pleased.

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