Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) is set to take place on June 7, and that's where the company is expected to unveil its next wave of updates for all of its major software platforms. While it's still a few weeks away, reports of what the updates might include are already surfacing, which tends to happen every year. According to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman, iOS 15 is going to bring an array of improvements across notifications, the home screen (specifically on iPad), and privacy features.
Perhaps the most notable change is in the notification department, with Apple apparently planning to be implementing a multitude of modes that adjust notification settings based on a user's status. For example, if the user is driving, certain notifications may be set to vibrate only, and if they're working, they could be set to have sound. The report mentions driving, working, and sleeping modes, in addition to custom categories users can create, and users can choose their current status from the Control Center or on the lock screen.
Aside from notifications, users can also set up automatic replies to messages based on their status. Currently, auto-replies do exist in iOS, but only while the user is driving, but this will apparently be customizable for each of the modes mentioned above.
For iPad users, another notable upgrade will be on the Home screen. While iOS and iPadOS 14 introduced widgets, iPad users can only have them on the left side on the screen, separated from the app list. The report suggests that with iPadOS 15, it'll be possible to place widgets anywhere on the home screen, even filling the entire app grid with them.
Finally, another tidbit mentioned in the report is focused on privacy, that being a new menu where users can see which apps have been collecting data about them. Apple has previously implemented features like App Tracking Transparency, which warns users of apps that might collect data about them using the system's advertising identifier and requires the user to consent to that usage. In this case, the feature is designed to combat "special trackers" can collect data such as the user's phone number and location.
Apple's software updates typically have a bit more to them, so it's likely that this isn't all we'll be seeing at WWDC. It's also possible that some of these features get delayed or cancelled between now and the eventual release of the updates.