iOS7 is now available to iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users as a free software update. It’s a whole new look for Apple devices. It features flat icons and pastel colors.

Apple says the new operating system has over 200 new features including a Control Center that gives you quick access to controls with just one swipe from the bottom of your screen and a notification center that’s available from the lockscreen. Plus a new Today feature that lets you see your calendar and things like weather and traffic at a glance.

Apple also promises improved multitasking  that makes it easier to switch between apps. The company is also touting the new AirDrop function that makes it easier to share content with people close by.

Improvements to the camera include filters that let you add real-time photo effects and easy switching between video, square, photo and panorama modes. There’s also a new Moments feature that will automatically organize your photos and videos based on time and location.

As the owner of a Galaxy S4, a lot of this sounds pretty familiar to me.

There are also new male and female voices available for Siri and better integration of Twitter, Wikipedia and Bing searches.  The free iTunes radio service will offer over 200 stations and a catalog of music from the iTunes Store.

There’s also a new Find My iPhone Activation Lock that requires a password before you can turn off the Find my iPhone function, erase date or re-activate a device. Users can now also make audio only calls using FaceTime.

Some people who’ve tried the new operating system are saying people thinking about purchasing the new iPhone 5s or iPhone 5c might want to hold off and try out this update first, because it’s like getting a whole new phone.

~ Cynthia