Apple seems to have already tweaked iOS 7's controversial app icons - but only slightly.

Apple iOS 7 is still in beta, and some or all of its visual cues (and even features) could alter before its official launch in autumn. But that hasn't stopped critics from wading in with trenchant criticism of Apple's new mobile operating system for iPhone and iPad.

In fact, minor changes to the look of Apple's own app icons in iOS 7 have already been made, if images temporarily (and probably mistakenly) shown on Apple's website are any indication. 9to5Mac noticed that four of the iOS 7 icons - Weather, Reminders, Passbook and Newsstand - were different on Apple's website (for a while) to the ones shown off at WWDC last week.

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In the main these were small tweaks to the colour palette. Newsstand has a grey background instead of white, Passbook's lower third is a light green instead of orange, and the four dots on the Reminders icon are all different colours. Only Weather has changed significantly, with an entirely new design that shows the temperature replacing the cloud and sun of last Monday.

Apple iOS 7 redesigned icons

The 'alternative' iOS 7 icons (image courtesy of 9to5Mac)...

Apple iOS 7 icons

...and the iOS 7 icons as revealed at WWDC last Monday. Note the orange strip on Passbook, and the lack of a number on Weather

(9to5Mac reports that the altered icons have since been taken down.)

Small changes indeed - if indeed these are genuine changes we can expect in the beta, rather than old designs that someone mistakenly put on the site for a while. Still, coming barely a week after the grand unveiling, these serve as a handy reminder that the design is not finished, and that the cosmetic details which criticism has often focused on remain a work in progress.

For what it's worth we think Passbook looks slightly nicer in these alternative designs, Newsstand slightly worse and Reminders about the same; while being able to view the temperature at a glance could be useful (if a potential drain on battery life), if that's really what the new Weather icon will provide (the iOS 6 icon, of course, simply displayed a static number that never changed, so don't get your hopes up).

But we await further tweaks with great interest, and hope that Game Center is near the top of the list for a rethink. Bubbles indeed.

Apple iOS 7 Game Center

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