All that you need to know about the New Auto Layout Feature in iOS 11

It is pretty frustrating when you have to shift from the portrait to the landscape mode on your smartphones, and the apps no longer look the same. More than the interface, it is the operation which becomes a problem. Some apps don’t seem to work as well in landscape mode as in the portrait mode or vice versa. Also it is absolutely crazy when you have to make screen layouts go with both the iPad and iPhone devices. However, Apple has come up with a solution for that.

The latest rage in the world of technology is iOS 11. The latest update rolled out by Apple has taken the world by storm and users seem to be ecstatic. Well, there is good reason. One of the many features that have been introduced in the new iOS version is auto layout. It not only makes internationalisation trivial but also is compatible with a number of screen sizes as far as your apps are concerned.

Earlier, you would have to come up with storyboards for all the languages that you wished to use. No longer would you have to go to all that trouble. This even includes languages like Arabic or Hebrew, which go from right to left. But it’s important that you know exactly how auto layout works and what it is all about. This is precisely what the tutorial will tell you.

So what’s auto layout all about?

Now the iOS update is pretty new and chances are, you’re still getting accustomed to the big changes that have come with it. So probably, you may not have used the uto layout feature yet. So what is it exactly? Well, earlier on, Apple had designed only one screen size for all devices. This meant that apps that were going to be compatible with Apple would have to design the interface based on only one size.

Since it’s only one size, it wouldn’t be too hard to create the app. However, it must be realised that iPads and iPhones have different screen sizes. That means, an app that has been designed keeping in mind the iPad screen size wouldn’t really be compatible with the iPhone screen size and vice versa. Now this was a problem which needed to be addressed.

This also meant that app developers would have to design different interfaces catering to each different kind of screen size. Now that’s pretty inconvenient if you think about it. So the guys at Apple decided to create a system which allowed the user interface to shrink, grow or even move based on the kind of screen size they’re dealing with. This is termed as auto layout, one that is versatile and adjusts depending on screen size.

Basically, the auto layout is a system that will control the position and size of the various elements on the app depending on the size of the screen, or the space available for it. If you are planning to create an app using the auto layout, there are a few things you need to know:

  • There is a pin menu on the bottom right side. This option will let you add all kinds of elements to the user interface like labels and buttons.
  • There is an align menu as well. This option will allow you to align vertically a label which is relative to a different view.
  • There is a document outline as well. This basically lets you look at the bigger picture.
  • The attributes inspector is an option which will allow you to customise the attributes of a view.

With the brand new auto layout, there have been some external and internal changes that have taken place. Some of the external changes are:

  • The user will be able to change the size of the window
  • The user has complete control of when or how he or she leaves the split view option.
  • The device would rotate
  • The options for active call and the bars for audio recording can disappear or appear
  • Different classes of size are supported
  • Different sizes as far as screen is concerned are supported

Some of the internal changes are:

  • The way the content is displayed on the screen
  • Internalisation is supported
  • Dynamic Type is also supported.

Of course, these changes wouldn’t really function unless you get complete cooperation and dynamic response from the developers of the app. Now the size of the screen will not change during run time, it will however adapt to different sizes of the screen. This allows the app to function in different and versatile environments.

This basically leads to a kind of adaptive interface which would be compatible with any kind of iOS App Development Services in India or iPad or any Apple device. So if you haven’t tried out this feature yet, go for it.

Written by stephenannabelle

Annabelle Stephena is an Senior app developer, mobility strategist and Team Leader.

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