iOS 5 is a Worthy Free Upgrade
Like many others, I was a bit underwhelmed by the announcement of the iPhone 4S the other day. There is some happier news though. The latest operating system, iOS 5, has also been released and it is free. While I do not plan on upgrading my iPhone 4 to an iPhone 4S, I was quick to upgrade to iOS 5 and to start utilizing the latest features.
The most noticeable change is the new Notification Center. When new events (phone calls, texts, email, Facebook, Twitter, etc.) happen a bar will appear across the top of your screen. If you want more details simply pull down on that bar to reveal the entire Notification Center. Touching any event will bring up the related app. You can change the settings for various apps as to whether or not they will push notifications to the bar and if you want notifications to appear in the lock screen mode.
If your device has a camera, from the lock screen push the home (round) button twice and you will be able to see the camera app. You can also now use the Volume + button as the shutter button to take a picture. This change definitely speeds up the photography process. Another new option is to turn on Photo Stream and your photos will automatically go to all your devices via iCloud. Editing photos is now a part of the standard camera app too.
Twitter has been incorporated into iOS 5 to make it easier by including a Twitter field in your contacts and you can tap to tweet them or view their tweets. Sending a tweet from within Safari, Photos, Camera, YouTube, or Maps has also been integrated.
Reminders and newsstand are two new icons you will find on your screen. Reminders is just that, a nice to-do list, including location based events that appear when you arrive at your destination. The app will work with iCal, Outlook, and iCloud so you are automatically up to date on all your devices. The Newsstand lets you purchase digital magazine subscriptions and have them all in one convenient folder.
In all there are 200+ new features and upgrades with the latest operating system. I found these updates alone will hold me over nicely without a costly upgrade of hardware until the iPhone 5 is released. You can get more details of the latest release from Apple. iOS 5 is compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPod touch 3rd gen, iPod touch 4th gen, iPad, and iPad 2.