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Apple Previews iOS 5 with Notification Center, OTA Updates, Wi-Fi iTunes Syncing and More

Apple today announced iOS 5, the much-anticipated major update to Apple's operating system for the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad today at the WWDC keynote event. The new major features include a completely revamped notifications system, over-the-air software updates and activation for new devices, and iTunes library syncing over Wi-Fi.
"iOS 5 has some great new features, such as Notification Center, iMessage and Newsstand and we can't wait to see what our developers do with its 1,500 new APIs," said Steve Jobs, Appleā€™s CEO. "Perhaps iOS 5's paramount feature is that it's built to seamlessly work with iCloud in the Post PC revolution that Apple is leading."
Of the many new features discussed:

• Notifications will see a major overhaul as rumored most recently by TechCrunch. The new Notification Center in iOS 5 will aggregate all notifications, accessed by swiping down from the status bar at the top of the screen. New notifications will appear at the top of the screen and will be less obtrusive overall. Notifications will also be displayed on the lock screen along with weather and stock alerts. Tapping on a notification will automatically open the related app.

• iOS 5 will be "PC free" allowing new device activation and iOS updates over the air. Also, iTunes library syncing will be possible wirelessly via Wi-Fi. While an iOS device is being charged, it will automatically find the associated iTunes library and sync automatically.

• AirPlay Mirroring will also be possible to wirelessly mirror an iPad's display to a television connected to an AppleTV.

• Also as rumored, Twitter will be integrated into iOS and several apps including Camera, Photos, Maps, and Safari. Contacts can also be updated automatically with Twitter handles.

• As reported by This is my next... earlier today, Apple introduced a new unified messaging service between iOS users called iMessage. iMessage will allow iOS users to send text and multimedia messages over Wi-Fi and 3G with read and delivery receipts and real-time typing indication. Messages will be pushed to all iOS devices a user owns.

• Game Center will be enhanced with profile avatars, friend recommendations, and the ability to purchase new games within Game Center.

• Mobile Safari will also get several new features including tabbed browsing and a Safari Reader feature where users can save articles for later reading in the Reading List, which will be synced across multiple iOS devices for easy access.

• A new Reminders app will offer task tracking in iOS 5 with geolocation capabilities to trigger reminders based on user location.

Camera will get a shortcut from the lock screen for quicker access. New features include optional grid lines for better framing and on-device editing like cropping and rotating plus red-eye reduction. The volume up button can also be set to trigger the shutter.

Mail will also see some signification changes including rich text formatting, message flagging, draggable addresses.

• Other new system-wide features include a dictionary that can be accessed by any app and keyboard enhancements to modify the on-screen keyboard.

• A new app called News Stand is also coming to the App Store with iOS 5. It will be a counterpart to iBooks featuring newspapers and magazines and will download new issues automatically in the background.

iOS 5 will be available in the fall and will support the iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, 3rd- and 4th-generation iPod touch, and iPad and iPad 2. Developers will be able to access a seed today.

Apple has posted a video describing iOS 5 here.

Top Rated Comments

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42 months ago
unless you're 100% apple fanboy wwdc was a big yawn this year

some cool little improvements but nothing spectacular
Rating: 22 Votes
42 months ago
and apple dares to sue samsung???
lets see ...


Notification Center


Volume Up To Take Picture
... now we know why the app got banned from the appstore ;)

there's more i cant think of right now


Rating: 14 Votes
42 months ago
Wireless syncing and the notifications overhaul were long overdue. I think those are the features I'm looking forward to the most.
Rating: 12 Votes
42 months ago
What do you mean? They pretty much copied android!! Everything is ios 5 is already in android's operating system. I think apple made them selves look foolish today!

Hey Android: how ya like me now?

Rating: 9 Votes
42 months ago
If Maps truly isn't changing at all (the only thing I noticed was "alternate routes"), that's pretty pathetic. It's been virtually the same for 5 years!!
Rating: 8 Votes
42 months ago

Image (

iOS5 Notification is just a copy of David Ashman LockInfo.


Come on.. where else did you expect them to put it on the lock screen?
Rating: 8 Votes
42 months ago

Apart from stealing Android notifications did they do widgets?

They had to leave something to invent in iOS 6.
Rating: 7 Votes
42 months ago

Steve Jobs said 2011 is the year of copycats. He meant what he said; he just didn't say who is copying who.

I can guarantee you that the two work in entirely different ways code-wise.

I also find it funny that some people can only seem to harp on the smaller news simply because it enables the "Lulz, copycats" type of posting.

For the record I think the whole "X copied Y" posting trend on this site is downright retarded. You know when someone actually copies? When the law gets involved. Otherwise, the same features accomplished by different methods in code IS NOT COPYING.
Rating: 6 Votes
42 months ago
And I thought iOS 4 was big deal for its time!

I seriously cant think of anything else I could have wanted from iOS 5 and iCloud at this point!
Rating: 6 Votes
42 months ago

But Fall? I guess that's to coincide with the release of whatever the next iPhone will be (5 or 4S).

Gotta give the devs time to a) properly test the OS, b) start making use of those new features and c) perhaps most importantly check nothing breaks in their apps.

unless you're 100% apple fanboy wwdc was a big yawn this year

some cool little improvements but nothing spectacular

I'm sorry but that's nonsense. Apple chucked out three major features today that will all be available within a few months and which are potential game changers:

1) iMessage goes right at the heart of RIM and, if it works as advertised, WILL get Blackberry users transitioning to iPhone. It also adds built-in messaging for iPod Touches adding another major value-add for Apple to what's already a very nice product.

2) iCloud looks to be cloud services done properly. Again we'll have to wait and see how it works in practice but based on what we've seen Apple are far ahead of any other OS manufacturer. Geeks seem to forget that it's not about the functionality itself, it's about making it simple to use and getting everyone on-board. iCloud seems to have a real shot at doing that and solves a lot of existing problems.

3) Finally the big one, PC Free. The iPad just became a standalone computer at least a year ahead of Windows 8 hitting the market and with a vastly superior ecosystem and sync service for both media and data than anything else out there. It was already a huge hit, this is only going to increase its potential reach. Same goes for the iPhone and iPod Touch as well.

I'd also add Lion to that list, partially because there's a lot of very nice looking updates in there, partialy because of iCloud but mainly because of its delivery mechanism and price. OS updates through the App Store? Yes, some won't be happy about that but it's going to be fascinating to see how quickly the transition from Snow Leopard happens. Microsoft will be watching that one VERY carefully...
Rating: 6 Votes

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