The updates that Apple showed off in iOS 7 could prove to be the most important ones since the iPhone debuted in 2007, at least in the opinion of Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster.
To kick off Day 1 of its Worldwide Developers Conference this week, Apple revealed a whole new look for its iOS interface and icons, along with a slew of new features and enhancements. Some of the early takes on the new UI have been decidedly mixed. But Munster feels the revamp is cause for Apple users and investors to get excited about both current and upcoming iOS devices.
"The new iOS design appears flatter and cleaner than the prior version," the analyst said in an investors note released late Monday. "We believe iOS 7 is a reason for users to get excited about their iPhones again by giving it a new feel, which is something that we believe has been lacking in the past iOS updates and subsequently device launches, regardless of hardware redesign."
iPhone users tend to get over changes to the hardware after a few hours, Munster opined, but "the OS is what mesmerizes people longer term." The analyst also believes that the WWDC keynote prepared the stage for several new products over the next year and a half, including the iPhone 5S, a low-cost iPhone, an Apple TV set, an iWatch, and potentially a mobile payments products.
Specifically, Munster is eyeing the debut of a low-cost iPhone for September or October, an unveiling of the Apple TV by year's end, and the lauch of an iWatch and a larger-screen iPhone in 2014.