At exactly 1:44 this morning, Scott Forstall, Apple’s senior vice president of iPhone Software, unveiled the much awaited major update to iOS4 during this year’s WWDC in San Francisco, California.
The iOS5, being a major update, was expected to feature revamped notification and a cloud-based storage and syncing ecosystem that can literally render the 30-pin sync cable useless. Apple didn’t disappoint us. Everything I hoped for was answered in 45 minutes.
Let me give you a rundown of some (8 of the 200 new features) of the good stuff Scott Forstall announced during the event.
1. Notification Center
2. Deep Twitter integration
5. Enhanced Safari
6. Additional Camera Features
7. Enhanced Mail Client
Let’s go into details!
1. NOTIFICATION CENTER
Apple took 4 years to revamp this but it’s okay. At least, they listened and this revamped notification system will be available soon.
Dubbed as Notification Center, it promises to push notifications such as mail, SMS, MMS, calendar, stocks, Twitter, Facebook, etc, without any interruptions unlike iOS 1 to 4.
The Notification Center is activated by pulling it down from the status bar just like how you do it on your Android OS phone (I smell yet another lawsuit from Google…). The notifications are neatly outlined in a container and even features stocks and weather updates too. It might feature more “widgets” in the future, but in the meantime iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad users will be stuck with 2 only.
Personally, this is one of the best features I really liked. My heart was really pounding with joy and enthrallment when this was being announced. With this feature on my iPhone 4, it would seem like I got myself a new one.
2. Deep Twitter Integration
Apple just made Twitter THE social-centric application in iOS. This feature is integrated in iOS’ core applications like Contacts, Photos (sharing service), Safari and a whole lot more.
Sadly, the Facebook integration in iOS5’s core system was a no-show at WWDC. Is Apple up for something? We’ll see.
Allow me to give my fearless forefast: This feature will kill Blackberry Messenger (BBM).
Apple has created its own messaging protocol which acts the same way like BBM and Whatsapp. Unlike BBM and Blackberry Social Services, iMessage works on 3G and WiFi. If you enroll to iMessage, all messages that will come in may be read on all your iDevices.
I always wanted to have this application built into iOS. The announcement of Reminders this morning gave me a smile. “About time!”, I said. No pun intended.
5. Enhanced Safari
The current Safari sucks! As a matter of fact, I ditched using Safari on my iPad and iPhone when I discovered iCab Browser. Apple finally learned its lesson thus they completely overhauled Safari.
Notable features include tabbed browsing (say goodbye to that annoying cards-type “tabs”), Reader Automatic Formatting and Reading List.
6. Enhance Mail Client
The iOS Mail client is currently fine but Apple didn’t stop in upgrading it. This time, the core application boasts rich text editing and you can even split the keyboard into two if you thing that the full keyboard is giving you Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
7. Additional Camera Features
With iOS5, you can edit the pictures you’ve taken straight from your iPhone. No other applications needed. You can crop, enhance and even remove red eye straight from the camera application.
But wait, there’s more – you can now also access the Camera app straight from the lockscreen, snap photos using the Volume up rocker, zoom in by pinching in and zoom out by, well, pinching out. Amazing!
You may have probably used seen this built-in iBooks. In iOS 5, Dictionary may be accessed across all core applications. That’s quite a handy tool for those who always wanted to use highfalutin words such as ‘juxtapose’, ‘regurgitate” and “coalesce”. Smart-ass!The availability of the iOS 5 for lowly iDevice users like is quite a downer though. We will be able to upgrade our iOS in Fall 2011. This is however a bittersweet news since its fall availability sparked a thought that a new iDevice may be introduced right in time the iOS 5 becomes available. New iPhone, iPod Touch or the iPad3? Who knows!
Check out the a video about the iOS video below:
Giancarlo Viterbo is a Filipino Technology Journalist, blogger and Editor of gadgetpilipinas.net, He is also a Geek, Dad and a Husband. He knows a lot about washing the dishes, doing some errands and following instructions from his boss on his day job. Follow him on twitter: @gianviterbo and @gadgetpilipinas.