WWDC 2011: 10 New iOS 5 Features
iOS5 Demo at WWDC 2011 Keynote
During the WWDC keynote speech, Scott Forstall showed off iOS5. There will be 1500 new APIs, along with 200 new features in iOS5.
- Notification Center: New notification system that allows you to see 'em all at once by swiping down from the top. Like Android, actually- this is one of my favorite Android features. iOS5's looks cuter, though. Locked screen shows more info about what's waiting for you when you unlock.
- News Stand: Subscription updates for online books and magazines. Basically like iBooks for periodicals, as far as I can tell.
- Twitter: New iOS5 Twitter interface built in to iPhone, with tweet options for everything that creates media, including your contacts list. (Facebook is conspicuous in its absence so far)
- New Safari: Basically, it it's Instapaper. iOS5's Safari has tabbed browsing like its desktop cousin, and eliminates page areas that require scrolling. Can it be switched off?
- Reminder: a built-in listmaking app. Geo-based notifications: reminds you to do stuff when you enter or leave certain areas. Great idea, if a bit creepy. We all know that our phones record our movements anyway.
- Improved Camera: New shortcut gesture, as well as gesture-based auto-focus and auto-exposure lock. Volume buttons can activate the camera.
- Mail: Flagging, rich text, S/MIME support, system-wide dictionary. S/MIME, by the way is "Secure/Multipurpose Internet Mail Extension- it's pretty much the standard for email and attachment encryption.
- PC-Free: the device no longer needs a computer to activate it. No iTunes synch required, thank heavens. Registration and software updates can be done over the air. (Sort of like setting up an Android phone). How will this affect jailbreaking and unlocking?
- Game Center: Extends the iPhone gaming experience to something sort of like Xbox Live. It acts like a game store, as well as its own gaming platform. Steam users weigh in on this one.
- iMessage: Messaging system between iOS 5 users: like BBM on the Crackberry, but with more features: multimedia, group conversations, and the ability to push a conversation across devices. The UI looks like that of iChat. AT&T and Rogers just pooped themselves as they pictured lost SMS revenue.
The whole PC-Free thing is a stroke of marketing genius, though it should have been part of an earlier version of iOS. Basically, you can give an iPad to your mom or grandpa, even if they're computer-illiterate. This is exactly what Cupertino hopes you'll do.
Also see Mac OSX Lion: New Features.