Great post, Philip. I really love the look they’ve gone with for News and Music, your proposed updates for Notes, Podcasts, and Contacts look great.
I hope they expand on Messages a bit more than what you’ve shown here. I’d love to see them add a quicker way to start conversations, maybe showing frequent contacts, active users, etc, similar to what FB has done with Messenger but more consistent and less cluttered. I think, using your other renders as an example or the current Music app, leveraging the different sections (“Recent Searches”, “Trending Searches”, etc) would work really well to add useful functions to the app.