Apple announced the future of iOS today with iOS 5, introducing the biggest part, a revamped notification system, the biggest change to the OS since iOS 3. The new system is called Notification Center and is accessed similar to Android when swiped down from the top of the screen.
Notification Center aggregates all the notifications in one spot and allows for easy access to all at one time instead of clicking each one individually. This is the first Pull Down menus we have seen in iOS and could be included to a number of features throughout. Notifications are also now on the lock screen, allowing easy access to calendar events as well as missed phone calls. Apple, aside from the major change of notifications has introduced Newsstand which allows newspapers and books to be found in one place. Other features in iOS 5 are:
Twitter integrates (as rumored) within iOS which tweets messages and you location through iOS. Integrated with many apps, including Camera and Photos. Just tap the action button, hit “Tweet” and it’s attached. This is done through Single sign-on. Simply, go into Settings, add in your details, and you’re configured for Twitter. These details are saved and can be used with any application.
Safari in iOS 5
Safari now has Reader capability, allowing for newspapers and articles to be read in a clutter free view. Apple also introduced something called Reading List, (basically InstaPaper), which allows articles to be saved for reading later and across devices. Other features include:
- Tabbed browsing
- Twitter integration (as do all other apps)
- Reminders (lists of things, assign a reminder to any dates, and you can even assign a location)
- Camera button on lock screen for easy access
- Volume up button allows picture taking
- pinch-to-zoom as well as hold and tap exposure
- Photo editing directly on device (You can crop, rotate, reduce red-eye, and you can do a one click enhance)
- Rich-text formatting, indentation control, draggable addresses (from To: to Cc: or Bcc:), flagging so you can mark them as unread, and now you can search the entire contents of messages.
- S/MIME is being added for added security
- built-in dictionary (also a service across iOS)
- New keyboard (grab it with thumbs and the keyboard splits in two
A computer is no longer necessary for syncing the device. It can be set up directly, when turned on, the screen displays a welcome message, allowing setup and activation right on the device.
New messaging service for all iOS users, regardless of device and features delivery receipts, read receipts, and real-time typing notification (which is pushed to all of your devices)
- Allows access to photo albums
- Sends notification when message arrives
AirPlay mirroring, letting you mirror your entire iPad right to the TV — wirelessly.
Apple is allowing developers to receive a seed for the SDK, today and briefly talked about device compatibility. Basically, any device from the iPhone 3GS on will work on iOS 5. iOS 5 will be released to users this coming Fall, possibly after the release of new hardware for the iPhone iPod touch and iPad.