First look: Widgets escape Notification Center, arrive on lock & home screens in iOS 10

Posted:
in iPhone edited June 2016
After laying the groundwork with widgets in Notification Center with iOS 8, Apple's forthcoming iOS 10 update will make widgets more accessible and useful, by making them available not only on a a device's lock screen, but also on the home screen's Siri search.




In the first beta of iOS 10, user-configurable widgets can be accessed from the home screen by swiping from the left. With this change, the iconic "slide to unlock" is officially dead: Apple's lock screen on iOS 10 now says "Press home to unlock."

Providing users with some location awareness on screen, the time and date move to the right side of the screen while widgets are displayed below. On an iPhone, this is a single column of widgets that can be completely customized by the user.

Apple's own built-in widgets include the Weather app, "Up Next" from Calendar, Siri App Suggestions, the Apple News app, and Maps Destinations.



Because the new lock screen uses the same widgets that were already created for Notification Center, developers testing iOS 10 will have a number of lock screen widgets already available to test.

Essentially, with iOS 10, Apple has taken the "Today" screen from the Notification Center and moved it to the lock screen. It's also available by swiping from the left on the home screen, where Siri Search debuted in iOS 9.

As with Siri Search, some widgets feature a "Show More" button, allowing detail to be expanded. iOS 10 remembers a user's preference and will continue to show expanded widgets.




Even while scrolling down the displayed widgets, a search bar remains constantly visible at the top of the screen, both from the lock screen and the home screen.

Scrolling all the way to the bottom, users are presented with a circular "Edit" button. Tapping this takes them to an "Add Widgets" screen, where native and compatible third-party apps can be added or removed from the widgets display. Installed apps with widget components are automatically found under the "More Widgets" subsection.

Once widgets are added, they can be reordered by dragging the three horizontal lines to the right. This works the same as it did in the Notification Center.

By moving widgets to the lock and home screens, Apple has removed the Today view from Notification Center in iOS 10 beta 1, but only on the iPhone. iPad users who install the first beta of iOS 10 can still access widgets via Notification Center if the device is unlocked, though this remains glitchy in the first beta and sometimes the widgets are not accessible. On the iPhone, Notification Center only displays missed notifications for the time being.

iOS 10 also takes advantage of the additional screen real estate found on the iPad, offering two rows of widgets displayed at once. Users can customize both the left and right column displays when adding or removing widgets.

As with iOS 10 on the iPhone, iPad users must also now press the home button to unlock their device.

Finally, iOS 10 has also changed the camera quick access function from the lock screen. Now, users can swipe toward the left anywhere on an iPhone or iPad display to pull over the Camera app from the right side of the screen. Previously, this required swiping upward from the bottom right corner.

iOS 10 is currently available to test in beta form for registered developers. Members of Apple's public beta program will be able to install iOS 10 starting in July, and it will launch to the general public as a free, final update this fall, likely in late September.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 17
    kevin keekevin kee Posts: 1,291member
    Majority of people don't even know about the swipe right search page and don't even care about widgets, I am curious how this will playout. There need to be a more obvious clue to access this page from the main locked page to make it more day-to-day useful. It has a big potential, as I often rely a lot with the search page, but I can't say the same to most people. I often do quick search bypassing safari and/or google, I just hope people will use this more often because it's much faster to swipe right and type into the search bar to find an apps among hundreds of icons or to search cinema show time or to find definition of a medical term or to play a specific song that comes in my mind, just some examples.
    edited June 2016 repressthisjbdragon
  • Reply 2 of 17
    kevin kee said:
    Majority of people don't even know about the swipe right search page and don't even care about widgets, I am curious how this will playout. There need to be a more obvious clue to access this page from the main locked page to make it more day-to-day useful. It has a big potential, as I often rely a lot with the search page, but I can't say the same to most people. I often do quick search bypassing safari and/or google, I just hope people will use this more often because it's much faster to swipe right and type into the search bar to find an apps among hundreds of icons or to search cinema show time or to find definition of a medical term or to play a specific song that comes in my mind, just some examples.
    Most people don't know about swipe right? How? That seems odd to me that you don't think most people don't know about swiping right....for once this makes me like the notifications on iOS. It actually makes sense. Apple is giving you more options to actually get what you have to do done.
    redgeminipa
  • Reply 3 of 17
    kevin keekevin kee Posts: 1,291member
    The search page is tugged neatly at the first page, but you do need to log in first and then swipe right to access it because it's not obvious in the page you first seen when log in. Most people I know don't even bother to do that, they go to Safari to search. How ridiculous. iOS 10 added the search bar on top of the clock in lock screen. This is what I wanted for so long. 
    edited June 2016
  • Reply 4 of 17
    Is the wallpaper She-Ra, Princess of Power?
  • Reply 5 of 17
    Apple keep reiterating how much they care about privacy, yet this update allows so much interaction with a phone without needing to unlocking it?
  • Reply 6 of 17
    kevin keekevin kee Posts: 1,291member
    Apple keep reiterating how much they care about privacy, yet this update allows so much interaction with a phone without needing to unlocking it?
    I think you still need to unlock the phone to access specified apps, just like the current implementation in notification widget. This way it won't breach your privacy as you can't access anything more than search result without slide to unlock. Someone who is having the beta right now might be able to confirm.
    redgeminipa
  • Reply 7 of 17
    mike1mike1 Posts: 2,593member
    I really wish they would allow me to group contacts.
    redgeminipa
  • Reply 8 of 17
    jbdragonjbdragon Posts: 2,244member
    I like the widgets how they already were. Out of the way and out of site and could access them at any time if/when I wanted them. I don't see myself using these new features. I just don't get the big deal about them.
    mike1
  • Reply 9 of 17
    napmannapman Posts: 24member
    I'm glad they went to back to actually showing the current temperature on the weather widget.
  • Reply 10 of 17
    Eric_WVGGEric_WVGG Posts: 882member
    Weather on the lock screen has been my #1 wish going all the way back to the iPhone 3GS days. Too bad these things are forced into an ungodly ugly style.

    kevin kee said:
    Majority of people don't even know about the swipe right search page and don't even care about widgets, I am curious how this will playout. There need to be a more obvious clue to access this page from the main locked page to make it more day-to-day useful…
    Everything you just said could be levied at the swipe-from-bottom control center, and that's turned out just fine. 

    It's okay for a few features to be for “power users”.
  • Reply 11 of 17
    TurboPGTTurboPGT Posts: 355member
    kevin kee said:
    Majority of people don't even know about the swipe right search page and don't even care about widgets, I am curious how this will playout. There need to be a more obvious clue to access this page from the main locked page to make it more day-to-day useful. It has a big potential, as I often rely a lot with the search page, but I can't say the same to most people. I often do quick search bypassing safari and/or google, I just hope people will use this more often because it's much faster to swipe right and type into the search bar to find an apps among hundreds of icons or to search cinema show time or to find definition of a medical term or to play a specific song that comes in my mind, just some examples.
    I don't know about that, but if you look at it now on iPhone....it seems to be a LOT more intuitive. Swipe down from the top is JUST notifications. Swipe left on the Home OR LockScreen, and its JUST widgets. It is a hell of a lot cleaner, and I instantly like it a lot more than the mess that was before.
    redgeminipa
  • Reply 12 of 17
    fmalloyfmalloy Posts: 105member
    Here we go with a new round of "users can access private information from the lock screen without a passcode" issues to be solved in a subsequent patch fix release...
    baconstang
  • Reply 13 of 17
    irelandireland Posts: 17,737member
    Left of home screen feels like the perfect location for widgets. And left of everywhere where it now is is very consistent and better of Apple than I'm used to post-iOS 7. All-round iOS 10 is the most successful design effort for iOS since iOS 6.
    edited October 2016
  • Reply 14 of 17
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 5,272member
    Apple keep reiterating how much they care about privacy, yet this update allows so much interaction with a phone without needing to unlocking it?
    Instead of complaining about it you could just turn that feature off in Settings. 
    irelandnolamacguy
  • Reply 15 of 17
    Would like it to be contextual (or at least an option for it to be) instead of user controlled order, where I get info/widget that I want and when I need to see based on my location, preferences, time, etc.
    edited October 2016
  • Reply 16 of 17
    kevin kee said:
    Majority of people don't even know about the swipe right search page ... There need to be a more obvious clue to access this page from the main locked page to make it more day-to-day useful. It has a big potential, as I often rely a lot with the search page, but I can't say the same to most people.


    In the moment when it transitions from lock screen to home screen, iOS should make its initial on-screen appearance as 1/2 of the search page plus 1/2 of the home page. Then within milliseconds, both screens should smoothly slide to the left -- leaving only the home screen. This would be completed nearly instantaneously at a moment of inactivity, so the user would be reminded of the search screen's key features at zero time cost. Later when a user becomes intimite with the feature, it could be turned off under Settings.

    Casual users would also appreciate having brief Help videos linked to every option in Settings. Make iOS obvious to everyone.
  • Reply 17 of 17
    Apple keep reiterating how much they care about privacy, yet this update allows so much interaction with a phone without needing to unlocking it?
    You decide what widgets appear on the lock screen. If you have a passcode set then the list cannot be altered without entering the passcode. Privacy. Sorted.
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