Saturday, April 17, 2010

iPhone OS 4 - sneak peak, multi tasking video, list of new features and more

Apple page -
Steve Jobs keynote speech presenting all this info to shareholders -

On April 8th, 2010 Apple released its plans for the iPhone OS 4, which will be compatible with iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, and the second- and third-generation iPod touch this summer, and with iPad in the fall.

Not all features in the iPhone OS 4 are compatible with all devices. Multitasking is available only with iPhone 3GS and the third-generation iPod touch (32GB and 64GB models from late 2009). This is due to the hardware needed to maintain good battery life while multitasking.

Here is an unofficial list of some of the "100+ new features" of iPhone OS 4.
1. iPod Out
2. Bluetooth keyboards
3. 5X digital zoom (camera)
4. custom wallpaper for home screen! (change lock screen, homescreen, or both)
5. MULTITASKING (double-click home button to use) Here's how it works. You can have at least 7 apps in the background, probably more. To keep your device from slowing, every developer can choose which aspects of their app to background. Therefore, the whole app isn't backgrounded: just main parts of the app. NOT FOR 2G iPod, 3G iPhone. Can work in beta 1 by editing one option in a file.
5a. Background audio - music from apps in the background
5b. Voice-over (VoIP) - talk over VoIp (Skype, etc) while in another app
5c. Background location - GPS in the background, indication in status bar of location tracking. This could allow apps to give you Push notifications based on your location such as 'there is a 10 car pile up 20 miles down the highway'. Multitasking opens so many doors for Apple.
5d. Push - (After 9 months, they've pushed over 10 billion notifications)
5e. Local Notifications
5g. Task Completion - finish task in background
5h. Fast App Switching - app stops completely, and starts from where it left off when you're back.
6. Unified Inbox - Don't you hate switching between your different email accounts just to read a few emails??
7. Folders - FINALLY! This is one you will like a lot more than you think. Imagine putting all your speed dial apps into one folder or keeping all your games organized.
8. iBooks Store for iPhone/touch - opens many new doors to the casual user.
9. Enterprise - Even better data protection. It encrypts email and attachments. There will be APIs available so developers can encrypt stuff inside their own apps. Also, Mobile Device management.
10. Game Center - The Apple-made social gaming center. This could be a big deal making the iPhone a somewhat legit hand held gaming device adding to a persons cost benefit analysis.
11. iAds (there have been 1 billion ad impressions per day, Apple wants in) Apple is helping developers (free ones as well) add advertisements to make money. Really... this is Apple trying to compete with AdSense and sticking it to Google after Android OS has cut into the iPhone sales.
12. Spell Check - about time... seems logical.
13. Call data only setting
14. Persistent Wifi - hopefully the new iphone will also have 802.11n support
15. Gift apps - buy your friends apps as a gift easily.
16. Rotate Photos - about time... seems logical.
17. Birthday Calendar
18. Recent web searches
19. Create playlists
20. Top hit in search
21. Sync IMAP notes
22. Nested playlists
23. CardDAV
24. Tap to focus video
25. Upload workouts to Nike+
26. Places in photos
27. People in photos
28. Search SMS/MMS messages
29. Wake on wireless
30. File & Diles Mail search results
31. Edit from outbox
32. Web search suggestions
33. Choose image size in Mail messages
34. CalDAV invitations
35. Larger fonts for Mail, SMS, Alerts
36. Removed the "Rate before delete" popup for apps - thank goodness, that was so annoying.
37. Alphanumeric Passcodes (letters and numbers in passcode)
38. Refined iPod app w/landscape and art in album view
39. Spotlight search includes Web and Wikipedia - hopefully this doesnt slow down the search
40. New streamlined contact screen
41. Borderless document view
42. Email threading
43. Location services indicator (arrow on status bar)
44. Icon revisions
45. Process Kill – the cntl+alt+del for iPhone... too help close frozen apps
46. Accessibility options refined
47. Braille connection
48. Push shows '!' in folders
49. Complete YouTube video rotation (except upside-down)
50. Video viewing directly on the Safari page – awesome.
51. Spotlight dock
52. Keyboard Layouts – thank goodness... perhaps this means T9 word is an option.
53. Note Syncing
54. Failed SMS Notification
55. Smart Links For Dates and Addresses in Emails

Great YouTube video showing the use of the multi tasking and custom wallpaper.

As you see only 50-60 features are really listed.. I believe a number of features are going to be specific to the much anticipated new iPhone release that will likely be announced in the next couple months. The specs of this OS already confirms many rumors that the new iPhone would have including multitasking, higher resolution camera, custom wall paper, folders, and more. Hearing these rumors confirmed leads me to believe some of the other rumors that have been going around. Specifically, the notion that the next iPhone will have an HD camcorder on the back.. and a low resolution 'webcam' so to speak on the front... allowing for video chats via your phone! Imagine being able to have web chats, or video calls with other new iPhone users, computers and probably next generation Andriod phone users. It opens a door that has been barely cracked to this point. iPhone will thrust video calling to become standard and normal and soon it will be easy for that father on the road to still watch his son play baseball, or to show your mother in law their grand childs first steps, or... you get the idea. Obviously, you don't always have to do a video call. If you just woke up, or are driving, or just don't want others to see you you can just call like you always have. But, it will be a nice option to have.
HD recording and 5mp camera... this is all getting ridiculous. Many people thought the Droid and other Android phones was the end of the iPhone. What really happened was Apple got a kick in the butt to push the limits of their hardware and AT&Ts network and stop holding back on features. The iPhone was always capable of, multitasking, folders, and most of the features we're getting. The reality is Apple felt crippling features would lead to more money and more stability for their phone. Now that Android exploited these 'weaknesses' of the iPhone we are seeing Apple wising up and stepping up their game to make the best iPhone, and phone to date.

I will note, while I do love the iPhone.. that I believe the Android OS will push phones to limits we never imagined. iPhone holds the advantage of streamlining the hardware used for their OS... where as Android is an operating system that is dependent on other manufacturers to utilize to their potential. So, if you plan on commenting on why Android is better, please make sure you are either comparing Android OS vs iPhone OS or comparing the iPhone to a specific phone that uses the Android OS (such as Nexus One, or Droid).

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