As part of OS X Yosemite's focus on creating a more seamless experience between your Mac and iOS devices, Apple's updating iMessage to keep conversations going. Now, it's not just instant messages from other Apple devices that show up on the desktop app, but also texts and multimedia that've been sent from other platforms (texts from your friends' Android devices, for example). Oh, and you can now make and take regular phone calls from your Mac when your iPhone is in range. As part of the new "Handoff" feature that means your computer and iDevice know exactly what the other is doing, a call to your phone will trigger a pop-up asking if you want to answer right from your computer. It works the other way around, as well, so you can make calls without touching your phone. And, what better way to show off the new feature than to call Dr. Dre live on stage? Show-offs.
Apple iMessage 2014
Messaging's received some TLC in the upcoming iOS 8 update, too. Word predictions across iMessage, Mail, etc. will take the person you're talking to into account -- expecting your vocabulary will be more formal with your boss than with your buddies, for example. All the data that helps with these smart predictions will be stored locally, by the way. Group threads are a bit more malleable, allowing you to add or remove people from the conversation, yourself included. You can also share your current location to a message group. A spirited back-and-forth convo annoying you while you're trying to work? Well, turning Do Not Disturb on for that individual thread means you can stop notifications from that conversation, while allowing everything else to get still through.
Probably the most important new feature is the addition of voice and video messaging. And, to respond to a voice message with one of your own, you simply raise the iPhone to your ear and start talking. To stop threads full of audio and video hogging all your internal memory, these kinds of messages will self-destruct, Snapchat-style. Unless you specifically choose to save them, that is.