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How to Get (Some of) the Best Features of iOS 8 Right Now

Thorin Klosowski, Gawker Media

How to Get (Some of) the Best Features of iOS 8 Right Now

iOS 8 was announced today with a ton of cool new features, but it won't be available until the fall. If you're itching to get some of those features now, here's how to do it.

iOS 8 has a ton of system-level changes that you won't be able to emulate now, but you can still get a few of the features, including a health app that tracks everything in one place, a predictive keyboard, and more. As you'd expect, a number of these will require you to have a jailbroken phone. You can actually download the iOS 8 beta right now if you want, but it's going to be buggy and tough to use. Using the below apps or jailbreaking should be a smoother experience.

Integrate All Your Health Data in One Place

Apple's new Health app puts all your health information from several different apps in one place. This makes it so it's all easy to track and you can get a quick overview of your health. Thankfully, there's already an app in the store that does this. ARGUS is a pedometer, calorie, nutrition, and activity trackers that integrates with a number of other apps to help you track your health in a variety of ways in one place.

Quick Reply for Messages

You actually have a few different options for quick reply for messages, but we like Auki because it's pretty powerful, supports a ton of different options, and has a silent mode. Likewise, the app supports all kinds of different settings like a custom Activator toggle, video and image support, contact pictures, and more.

Text, Voice, and Video Messaging with Location Sharing

How to Get (Some of) the Best Features of iOS 8 Right Now

iOS 8 will include a new way to send voice and video messages over iMessage. That's great, but it's also a feature that's been in third-party messaging apps for a long while. WhatsApp is probably the most popular choice, and also includes a feature similar to the new location sharing feature in iOS 8.

Support for Third-Party Keyboards

Adding third-party keyboards has always been super easy in iOS when you're jailbroken, so it's more about knowing which keyboards to look for. We like Fleksy and the Swype-style Touchpal to start. That said, you have a ton to choose from.

Gestures in Mail

How to Get (Some of) the Best Features of iOS 8 Right Now

Mail's getting all kinds of new gestures, but that's really nothing new to anyone who uses third-party mail apps. If you really want to triage your mail without opening every message, Mailbox is definitely the way to go. It has all the gestures that Apple showed off for Mail in iOS 8 plus a ton more.

Predictive Keyboard

How to Get (Some of) the Best Features of iOS 8 Right Now

The new predictive keyboard in iOS looks awesome and its smart learning system makes it look like it'll make typing messages a lot easier. If you're jailbroken, PredictiveKeyboard does the same thing. The more you use it, the more it learns about your typing habits, which helps make it work faster. Surprisingly, the jailbreak tweak looks pretty similar to Apple's as well.

Widgets in Notification Center

How to Get (Some of) the Best Features of iOS 8 Right Now

You've been able to add things to Notification Center for a long time if you're jailbroken and the process is usually as easy as just searching for what you want in Cydia. A ton of different little tweaks exist that do everything from add a lunar calendar to adding a YouTube viewer. It's certainly not as integrated as iOS 8's option, but these tweaks get the job done.

Access Any Kind of File on All Your Devices

How to Get (Some of) the Best Features of iOS 8 Right Now

Apple made a pretty big deal out of iCloud Drive, but anyone who has used the likes of

Dropbox, Google Drive, Box, or Skydrive has had this functionality for a long time. Dropbox is probably the closest to iCloud since it's widely supported by nearly every app in the App Store.

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