It’s been a busy busy busy week! Between E3 press conferences and the Apple WWDC event. There was little time to do anything but take notes. Here is a review of the new iOS 5 on a iPad.
Safari Reader will remove all of the ads and other Web layout within a story so you can view the text as a single scrolling page. We now also have tabbed browsing and wireless syncing. Apple introduced the ability to use the volume up button as a camera shutter button. Android and Windows Phone 7 phones have had physical shutter buttons for a while now. Also you may remember there was an app that let you do the same thing but Apple pulled it. Funny, now they are doing what they pulled an app for doing.
Apple states that GameCenter now has 50 million users now and pointed that Xbox Live has 30 million users and it took them over the eight years to get there. If you look at this closely they left out some key facts. Xbox Live Gold cost money. GameCenter is free. GameCenter is on every iOS device. Xbox Live is only on Xbox 360 and now windows phones which just stated out. Apple is trying to match up GameCenter vs. Xbox Live but its not really a real fight since they are not the same service. In iOS 5, GameCenter will add achievement points for the first time. I look forward to how developers will take advantage of this feature. You will also have the ability to see friends of friends. You will have the option for game discovery through recommendations.
iMessage for iOS 5 plans to take on RIM’s aging BlackBerry Messenger platform. For that matter it plans to take on all messaging services. Let us take a closer look at this new service that will sure change the shape of messaging. The new iMessage lets you send messages to any iOS device even if it does not have SMS support. That means iPad and iTouch devices are able to come along for the ride as well. iMessage will tell you if someone has received, read your message and shows you when someone is typing. You are able to turn this off if you don’t want to give anyone a heads up. It also provides encryption to protect your communications. I will have a deeper review of just iMessage at a later time.
Twitter so synonymous with just out normal life that it has become a part of everything we do. Political figures use it to announce they want to be elected. Celebrities tell us their thoughts and ideas. Businesses use it for promotions. Everyone else speaks their mind on there. I use it on a daily on multiple devices. Twitter already had a great app for the iOS but Apple has gone ahead and integrated Twitter directly into its operating system. With iOS 5 you can send tweets such as Web links, photos, YouTube, locations from Maps, and contacts. A neat feature that is that it will scan your address book and add twitter usernames to contact information.
iOS 5 also adds Reminders to the mix but to be honest it is 100% copy of Androids pull down screen. I do however like the ability to add reminders based on locations. You can set a reminder to go off when you leave the office, when you land from the airport or anywhere else you want. The only thing is the location has to be one from your address book or your current location.
iCloud backs up and syncs Mail, Contacts, Calender, Reminders, Bookmarks, notes, photoStream and adds Find My iPad/iPhone. You also get asked to make a .Me account for free. If you backup to iCloud your iDevice will no longer back up to your computer automatically when you sync with iTunes. At the moment you can not by extra space even if you wanted it. When you try to delete your iTunes music the iCloud crashes back to the dashboard. It also seems to make a partition on your device space and upload to the cloud. So be warned if you have a small hard drive, your space will be limited for backups. Also the first backup over to the cloud takes a few hours.
All in all for this being a beta they did a great job in developing iOS 5. I think iOS 5 will be loved by everyone not just the Apple Fanboys out there. Look for it this fall.