Just a week after its announcement, the iPhone 4S has already been getting a lot of pre-orders. But for those of you who are not positioned for an upgrade just yet, have no fear. You too can jump in on some of the new features by downloading Apple’s newest operating system: iOS 5. With over 200 new features for the iPhone, iPad and iPod, watch out for user reviews over the next couple days. Below are a couple of the key features that got me excited.
Notification Center: A central HQ for all your alerts, whether that be texts, emails, FB updates, app notifications or calendar reminders, all will become accessible in one location. With the Notification Center you will be able to see all your “incoming” in one location.
iMessage: This feature will allow any iPhone /iPad/ iPod to communicate via text message with each other over a Wi-Fi network. You can also send photos and videos to any device with the iOS 5 system installed.
Web Browser: A new reader feature will allows you to read web articles without all the other “noise” coming from things like ads. This will become particularly popular with the iPhone and iTouch users as the screens can be a bit small when reading a lot of text. I find this pretty ingenious because instead going the easy route of launching a bigger screen, Apple has given what you need to read more room.
Twitter: Gone are the days when you needed to open the Twitter app to post a tweet, you can now tweet directly from Safari, the camera, YouTube, Maps, etc. Even twitter handles are incorporated into your contacts so you can mention someone in a tweet of the funny cat video you just watched on YouTube.
Out of the Box: Moving forward, the iOS operating systems will allow you to configure your mobile devices without the need to connect to a PC or Mac. You can even download iOS updates without reading the Terms and Conditions directly without connecting it to your computer.
Newsstand: This one will become a favorite for you iPad users. It’s a centralized location that houses all your magazine subscriptions. There’s even a special place in the App store for it.
Wi-Fi Sync: Apple’s mobile devices are now even more so. With iOS 5, your device will automatically sync to your PC or Mac over a shared Wi-Fi connection. Just plug your device to charge and it will automatically sync your iTunes.
Camera/Photos: Instead of having to launch the Camera, you will now be able to take a picture right form the lock-screen. Pinch-to-zoom gestures and single-tap focus, along with all the other camera features are also accessible. To compete with point and shoot cameras, Apple now allows any iPhone/iPad/iPod to enhance, crop, rotate and edit your shots as you take them and post them to Twitter or Facebook.
Want iOS 5? Simply plug your iPhone/iPad/iTouch into your computer as if to sync. Launch iTunes and “check for updates” and follow the directions. And sorry folks, the iOS 5 is only compatible with iPhone generation 3 GS and up.