¶ What I'd Like Apple to Take Away in iOS 6

In a few days Apple will give its keynote address at WWDC, where it will more likely than not show off OS X Mountain Lion in final detail and offer a glimpse of what is to come in iOS 6 this fall.

In years past, I have led up to WWDC with my predictions and/or wish list of features I want added.

I’ve decided to try something different this year. While there are many things I would like to see added to iOS, there’s a few things I’d actually like to see taken away.

Cover Flow

I remember when I got the first iPod touch, I loved rotating it sideways and flipping through album covers to select songs. There’s a problem with Cover Flow, though: it’s more beautiful than it is functional. Quite frankly, it just isn’t that easy to use. I invoke it accidentally far more than purposely these days.

The novelty is gone. Maybe it is just because I have grown out of Cover Flow’s eye candy, but I have to wonder if new users to the iPhone and iPod touch find any usefulness in Cover Flow.

I wouldn’t mind seeing Cover Flow find its way to retirement in iOS 6. It makes for a neat demo to a new user, but more often than not it just introduces friction and lag when it pops up at the slight tilt of your hand.


Speaking of lag, the Ping integration in the Music app is a constant source of frustration for me. I find that I cannot act on the play/pause or track forward/backward buttons until Ping has polled Apple’s servers for whether I have previously “liked” or commented on a song.

This is one more thing that I think could be pruned from an overcrowded Music app, let alone the entire iTunes ecosystem.

Google’s Maps Data

There have been plenty of rumors going around that Apple will ditch Google’s map data from the Maps app in favor of its own data in iOS 6. I hope they come true.

Don’t get me wrong, Google’s maps are a fantastic service that I use nearly every day, and the data is very comprehensive.

But I just don’t think Apple can afford to rely on Google for such an important part of iOS when they are each other’s top competitors.


The YouTube app seems slightly irrelevant these days, given that is somewhat out of date with YouTube’s current feature set, and YouTube’s mobile site is more than functional. Heck, let Google roll their own YouTube app onto the App Store.

I just don’t see much advantage to having a built-in YouTube app anymore. And let’s face it, the icon is hideous.


And speaking of icons, it seems Newsstand is reviled by nearly everyone I know with an iPhone or iPad. I would like a way to at least hide the Newsstand icon when it is empty. I do not subscribe to any Newsstand apps, and I don’t foresee myself doing so any time soon.

So, instead, I have Newsstand shoved off onto the very last page of my home screen. I’d rather be able to toggle it off and keep it out of sight.

I have a much larger mental list running of things I’d like to see improved or added to iOS. The fact there are so few things I’d like to see removed is a testament to how well Apple has done in making an overall appealing system.