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Apple releases iOS 5 and iCloud

by Nick Wright

The iPhone 4S is arriving in stores after being launched a week ago, but it is the new operating system and cloud storage services that were released on Wednesday that have people talking. The update has not been as trouble free as Apple would have liked.

The high number of users trying to download iOS 5 has caused problems with the company’s servers and led to lengthy download times and errors – so many people experienced problems that error 3200 was even trending on twitter. Other users are saying that the update had caused problems with their apps, including facebook and twitter, and some of their data has been lost. Many users had to retry the download several times before it was successful.

iOS 5

The new operating system is compatible with the iPhone 4S, iPhone 4 and 3GS, as well as with iPad, iPad 2 and recent iPod touch models – the iPhone 4S comes with iOS5 already installed. The software update is available as a free download for existing users.

Features

Notifications: banner notifications means new emails, texts, etc. no longer interrupt everything you’re doing. Updates to the notification centre also give you greater control
iMessage: this new IM system allows you to share text, pictures, and video and is free between iOS customers. Because its not going through SMS, messaging people on the network virtually free.
Newsstand: access your favourite newspapers and publications in a new folder
Twitter: fully integrated into iOS 5
Reminders: this to-do list style app works with outlook, iCalendar, and iCloud.
Camera: you can now open the camera right from the lock screen, use grid lines to take photos, pinch to zoom, and edit pictures directly from your iPhone. If you’re phone is cloud enabled, pictures are automatically uploaded to your other devices
PC Free: you no longer need to own a computer

The review by Dan Moren at MacWorld is definitely worth a read.

iCloud

Storing your music, photos, documents and more in the cloud makes enormouse sense for Apple as many Apple customers have more than one device. Storing data in the cloud, allows their customers to access their information from each of their devices without having to email attachments or carry around usb drives. The iCloud includes 5GB of free storage, and can be used with your Apple Devices and with a new cloud version of iTunes.

Features

iTunes: new and past purchases are automatically available on all of your devices
Photo Stream: 1000 of your latest photos available on all of your devices with syncing or sending
Documents: if you have the same apps installed, documents are automatically kept up to date
Apps purchased on one device are automatically available on all compatible devices
Calendar, Contacts, Bookmarks, Reminders are automatically synced across all of your devices
Backup: automatic daily backup and system restore should you need it

Despite the problematic start, the success of the iPhone 4S, iOS 5, and the cloud capability will tell us a lot about Apple’s future place in the increasingly competitive smart phone market, and their ability to hold off Android, Blackberry, and other new competitors.

Have you installed the new iOS 5 and cloud functions? Tell us what you think so far…

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