iOS 8 Insight: Messages Is All New With Quick Reply, and So Much More

One of Apple’s major emphasis of iOS 8 is the stock Messages app to attempt to convince people to use it over WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, SnapChat, Google Hangouts, BBM, Skype, Line, and many more. The big new addition is the long awaited feature of quick reply allowing you to swipe down on a Messages notification to reply right there without leaving what you’re doing. It’s taken a step further with the ability to swipe to the left on the Messages notification on the lock screen to reply right there without unlocking your device.
Quick reply is an amazing feature that makes it much more enjoyable to use Messages, without having to even go to the Messages app. There’s more to Messages in iOS 8 including the ability to send an audio snippet instead of text by simply tapping, and holding the new microphone button situated to the right of the text entry box. Once you’re finished recording you can swipe up to send, swipe left to delete, or simply play it back before pressing send. If you get a voice message back, you can lift your device to your ear to hear it back like a phone call. On the left side of the text entry box is the camera button allowing you to send an existing photo/video like before, but now you have quick access to the camera to send a shot you take right then, and there.

Another handy new feature in Messages is the ability to share your location, either sending your current spot, or your location for a specific interval. It’s kind of like Find My Friends, but built right into the messages app to make it so much easier to meet on the fly. All you do is tap on the “Details” button in the upper right to bring up the option to share your location in different forms. From the same pane, you can also set “Do Not Disturb” allowing you to set it for individual conversations, rather than just the system wide setting. In addition to sharing your location, you can send multiple photos & videos at once for the first time in the Messages app. Apple also has introduced a new attachments portion, which offers one single location to view all photos, and videos of a conversation without having to scroll through the whole message chain. The attachments are also accessible in the “Details” pane, so get used to pressing that tab in the upper right, as it’s highly valuable in iOS 8.

iOS 8 has tons of features, and Messages is a definite stand out that will likely change the way you use the stock Messages app. It’s worth noting that these new features are based on using iMessage, rather than generic text messages.


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