iOS 5 Coming This Fall, Includes Notification Center, Twitter, iMessage, and More
iOS 5 has 1,500 new APIs and over 200 new features, but today Apple showed us the 10 key features of the new software for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. The Notification Center feature alone will make your iPhone or iPad feel like a new device. The developer version of iOS 5 is available today, and the software will be available to consumers this fall. Here’s a quick look at the top new features.
1. Notification Center: 100 billion push notifications and counting. Today new notifications interrupt you and they’re not persistent. Swipe finger down from the top at any time on any screen. Dismiss it by swiping up.
2. Newstand: There’s a new place where you can download all of your favorite magazines and newspapers, which includes background downloads. Titles include Popular Science, Esquire, Wired, Golf Digest, New Yorker, Oprah, New York times, and more. This feature will get a lot more publishers on board.
3. Twitter: iOS 5 is getting social with Twitter. A single sign-on gets you set up. You never need to re log-in. Twitter lets you share photos and optionally add your location. You can also tweet articles from the web, YouTube, and Maps. Integration also includes contacts, which will automatically update your photos.
4. Safari: Yes, tabbed browsing is here! The Reader feature gives you a full view of a story, with a single scrolling view. You can e-mail the contents of the story, not just the link. The Reading List feature lets you save a story to read it later. This syncs up with Safari on the iPad and Safari on Mac and Windows, so you can continue reading on another device.
5. Reminders: Your iOS 5 device can remind you what to do. And you can even set up a geofence so your phone can remind you something when you’re leaving a place or arriving somewhere. This is very handy for forgetful people (like me) who are always in a rush.
6. Camera and Photos: You Volume up button to take a picture. Optional grid lines to compose your photo and pinch to zoom in the camera. If you set your finger over a part of the scene, iOS 5 will set AE/AF lock. You can edit photos right on the iPhone and iPad. This includes crop, rotate, red-eye reduction, and auto-enhance.
7. Mail: You can finally search the entire contents of all of your messages. Other features include identation control, flagging of mentions, and the ability to swipe to get to your inbox from the home screen. You can also grab an address and move it from the To field to CC or BCC. The keyboard can even be split on the iPad for easier thumb typing.
8. PC Free: When you set up your iOS 5 device, you won’t need to hook it up to a PC. Everything takes place on the iPhone and iPad itself. You’ll also get over-the-air updates, even incremental ones, without having to physically sync. This also includes iTunes, which now includes wireless syncing via iCloud.
9. Game Center: There’s 50 million Game Center users, which is about 20 million better than Xbox Live. You can see photos of your friends, which makes it more friendly. iOS 5 supports turn-based games out of the box, so the developer doesn’t have to do the work.
10. iMessage: iOS has never had an instant messaging client, but now it does. iMessage supports iPhone, iPad, iPod touch. (What, now Mac OS X Lion?) Can send text, photos, video, and it supports group messages. There’s delivery receipts, read receipts, and typing indications (so you know the other person is talking) represented by three little dots. Messages are pushed to all devices at once if you have more than one iOS gadget. iMessage supports 3G and Wi-Fi and it’s encrypted.
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