iOS 5 was released a couple of days ago for users of the iPhone 3GS and 4 and as expected the 4S ships with version 5 pre-installed. We will of course get free updates from Apple for the OS over time but out of the box the experience is smooth and stable. Apple note that there are 200 new features in iOS 5 but the key changes in the latest version are areas such as better notifications (messages, invitations, friend requests) through Notification Centre and iMessage which allows us to message other iOS 5 users via an Apple specific client. Twitter also has better integration into iOS with the latest version too.
Siri is Apple’s brand new voice recognition personal assistant, as you can see from the screenshots above, we can ask it requests such as the weather in certain places, or ask it to set reminders or alarms. Currently Siri is only available on the 4S handset, but we believe Apple will make it available to the iPhone 4 users in due course.
The camera and photo applications have also been updated so that we can maximise the quality of our images before distributing them, direct from our phone. Steps such as crop, rotate, enhance and remove red-eye are all available and we can access our camera direct from the lock screen, minimising the time from picking up the phone to taking a shot.
Finally we have iCloud which brings all of our media together in one place. Take a picture on the iPhone 4S and it is immediately available on our iPad. Buying an album on the iPad? iCloud will allow you to download it to our other Apple devices at the same time and backups can be arranged too, ensuring we have a remote copy of all our important data. The various options for what to sync with iCloud can be seen in the screenshot above.
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