The BIG announcements at Apple’s WWDC
It’s been a big day of news, and I’m running on 2 hours of sleep so bear with me on this one. I think it’ll be easiest if we break down all the new announcements from Apple’s WWDC (Worldwide Developer Conference) by sections to get a better idea of what exactly Apple announced during the event early this morning. It’s only fitting that this news was to come out on the day after our most successful month in terms of views and articles. First piece of big news? No iPhone 5/iPhone 4s, but that was widely expected to be the case. So let’s have a look at what we can actually look forward to!
The biggest announcement was the 200 odd feature’s Apple added to their iOS 5 operating system, but we obviously aren’t going to list out all 200 of them, but let’s have a look at the biggest feature’s in iOS 5.
iOS 5 brings a very very different style of Notifications to Apple devices, which we’re quite excited about, especially the old notification system sucked. Apple have taken a leaf (a very big leaf) out of Android’s page with the new style of notifications which should make everyone happier. Your notifications now load in a very neat and organised fashion with the new Notification Center, which you can easily access by swiping your finger down from the top of the screen to the bottom to reveal all your notifications. Notifications are displayed in a very neat manner and organised into groups depending on what the notification popup is referring to. Each notification will have a small icon next to it to give you a better idea of what you missed out on (ie: texts, apps, missed calls, etc..). This is a feature Android started, and clearly Apple have noticed how useful it is, although we wish they had been a little more original about it.
The lock screen also has a new way of displaying the notifications, as you can see in the picture above. Also, simply swiping a notification to the right will take you to said application, quite cool.
Much like how Windows Phone 7 has deep Facebook integration, Apple will now have deep twitter integration, perhaps showing how far twitter has come in a short time. Twitter will be baked into the iOS 5 operating system, meaning it will be on the device, everywhere you look, as well as many of Apple’s Apps (think camera, photos, safari, youtube and maps). Much like how Android does right now, you can now link a users twitter details to that persons contact card on your iPhone and interact with them straight from there. Apparently you’ll only sign into twitter on the phone once, and then simply share the credentials as opposed to signing in again and again.
This will obviously be quite a useful feature for those avid tweeters (like me, even though my iPad will have to substitute for my lack of iPhone). Tweet away seems to clearly be the message here, and we feel like it will work.
As you can see above, the new lockscreen has a few different things in it. First will be the obvious notifications which we already talked about, and the second, and perhaps the most useful for you iPhone photo enthusiasts, will be the new Camera App on the lock screen. With it you can simply turn your phone on, click on the button and be straight away into the Camera app in an instant. Obviously it’s not quite as useful as Windows Phone 7’s quick hold on the designated camera button, but since Apple devices don’t have said ‘designated camera button’, this is the next best thing you’ll get. Also it seems you can control the music straight from the lock screen, although we’re not sure if more information will be added there as of now.
Well done Apple. You’ve successfully made both SMS and BBM (BlackBerry Messenger) endangered species with the release of your iMessages app. Think of it as a mix between MSN and BBM, with Apple’s touch. While they’re quite like the current SMS feature, they add oh so much more. You can now see when someone is writing a message to you (ala MSN), and the coolest bit is you can see when someone has received and read your message (a bit like Whatsapp). Gone will be the days of those people who claim to have ‘never read/gotten your message’, which sucks to be them.. or myself who seems to do that often, often from forgetting to reply.
The obvious drawback is like BBM services, this service will only be available to those with iOS devices, making it an Apple exclusive, but since we all know most people use Apple devices, I’m sure we’re quite safe. And yes, they will work over both wi-fi and 3G, and all messages will be encrypted.
We all need reminders, but never get around to downloading that one App which would help us with reminders. But now, thanks to iOS 5, you’ll have reminders baked right into the iOS 5 OS. You’ll be able to set reminders, appointments, and even make lists like grocery lists or that big bucket list you’ve always wanted to make. A useful feature, althought we’re not sure how much use people will get out of it once the initial excitement of a new feature wears off.
And the other features:
Safari: Safari has been updated to be much more intuitive than ever before. The new iOS 5 safari brings an integrated Safari Reader, where you can have reading lists (where you can save the interesting articles you were interrupted while reading to Apple’s iCloud (more on that later) and you can have it synced across all your Apple devices for picking up that article at any time). iOS 5 also brings improved browser performance across all devices.
Bye Bye PC: According to Apple, you can now update the OS of your Apple device OTA (over the air), meaning you won’t ever have to connect it to a PC (or Mac we suppose) to get what you need.
Well Played Apple, you brought a host of cool feature’s to iOS 5, although we do wish you had been more original about some of them since quite a few of the newest features are technically taken from Android/BlackBerry/Windows Phone and Appleized. Well I suppose that’s what happens when you let the ball drop with small updates every year. Still we think Apple’s take on some of them is brilliant and we can’t wait to get our hands on the updates. iOS 5 will be available later in the year, closer to when the iPhone 5 (or iPhone 4S is released).
For those of you interested in watching the entire WWDC annoucement, head on over to this link.