Apple’s iOS 5: New Features for Users & Developers

By: Hank McLaughlin 06/29/2011

Earlier this month Apple released iOS 5 for developers to begin working with for iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch applications. So far the developers here have had a positive reaction to the new iOS with a lot of great features and add-ons. Unfortunately due to NDAs with Apple, we’re not at liberty to share many of the new features, however this is what we can share as of today.

New stuff for users:

Notification center

(http://www.apple.com/ios/ios5/features.html#notification)

  • alerts are displayed at the top of the screen momentarily
  • android style slide down list of all notifications
  • list of alerts on lock screen, If you slide to unlock on one of the notification it takes you right to the app for that email/text/calner event/push notification etc
iMessage

(http://www.apple.com/ios/ios5/features.html#imessage)

  • iphone to iphone text messaging over data, doesn’t use text messages
  • “receipts” sender can see that recipient received txt and wether or not they’ve read it.
  • works with ipods and iPads as well
iCloud

Allows syncing of data across devices (for instance I buy a song on my phone and when I get home it is already on my computer and iPad

new app reminders

Does location based reminders (for instance reminds you that you need bacon when you walk into the grocery store)

wi-fi syncing

can sync devices with itunes over wifi without plugging in

vol + button acts as a hardware shutter button for the camera

new stuff for developers

Again, this is tricky because technically we are under NDA and cant talk about this stuff but there are over 1500 new apis for developers. However below is info that has already made it out to news outlets and is now public knowledge.

iCloud apis allow document syncing

Apps can request space on the users iCloud and all of the users devices will upload new data to the cloud and all devices will download new data. So for instance if I edit a document on my phone and pull it up in the same app on my iPad, Mac or PC the document will be the most up to date version I edited on my phone.

air play mirroring

allows the screen to be displayed on a TV via an appleTV. Games are using this to show the game on the TV and use the iphone/iPad as a controller

Core Image

gives us easy apis to do difficult stuff with images, for instance facial recognition is built in

There are a lot of new features coming in iOS 5 that are going to open all new doors for developers and publishers of apps, giving breath in to new app ideas and allowing existing apps to add in new features. We’re looking forward to the official launch of iOS 5.

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