In case you’ve been sleeping under a bridge, Apple yesterday had a pretty big announcement regarding the future of their mobile OS. There are numerous new features being introduced such as Notifications, Twitter support, an actual dedicated camera button, reminder app, iCloud and so on. This should vastly improve the user experience for iOS users, and that’s a great thing. I can’t help but wonder why nearly ALL of their “new” features seem familiar though? Hit the break for a breakdown on Apple’s theft of every other mobile OS out there.
To start things off, we here at Abi aren’t going to bash the Apple lineup. Myself personally, I have an iPad 2 (as well as a XOOM) that I prefer for tablet use and many of our members in the forums have iDevices as well. But I have to wonder why a company that’s hell bent on suing a company (Samsung) because they have a swype to unlock screen would go right ahead and directly copy big features from every platform out there? Seems a little hypocritical doesn’t it?
Notifications in iOS 5 will feature a new drop down window shade that works exactly the same as Androids. Android has had this phenomenal feature since the original G1, and has been coveted by everyone else in the mobile industry since the beginning. It works great, is non intrusive and is completely user controlled. In iOS 5, You just pull down the window shade, tap a notification box and you’re taken right to your app….just like Android. This definitely gives me a little feeling of deja-vu, and might also give HTC and Samsung a little legal power themselves to shoot back at Apple claiming infringement.
The iPhone 4 has a pretty solid snapper on the back to capture those memories, albeit a little over-saturated. The new iOS 5 will feature the ability to turn the “volume up” hardware button into a dedicated camera shutter button. This will even be used to awaken the phone from a sleep, to go right into the camera app to capture memories. This is a fantastic feature that saves plenty of time and is hugely beneficial for those camera phone lovers. Of course this is something I’m familiar with because it’s a feature that was shipped with Windows Phone 7 last Fall. Apple must of seen the commercial of the guy jumping out of the plane to snap a picture quickly from his Windows Phone and thought it was an excellent feature they could “borrow” for iOS 5. Either way, good luck using that camera button while trying not to cover the lens with your hand seeing how the placement with a makeshift hardware button isn’t exactly optimal.
iMessage is BlackBerry messenger. No questions about it. Blackberry’s messenger service is the best in the industry letting users know when their message was sent, whether it was read, and threaded neatly in a conversation view for easy access to all communications. It’s fantastic, and no other platform has managed to implement anything close to this. Apple really just took down every note of BBM they could, and through an i_____ into the name.
This has been available for Windows Phone and the Zune software for a while now, as well as anyone who uses Doubletwist and Android. It’s a great feature to cut the cord and to help un-tether your non-PC device from the PC.
Welcome to Android and BlackBerry. This has been one of the best, and mostly criticized parts of Android since launch. Of course with Android your phone may or may not get an update, and it depends upon the carrier, OEM and so-on. But users never had to go plug their phone in to download a new update because it was sent OTA. Apple will still use the iTunes plug-in method, but will also be sending it OTA for users that haven’t had the time to download it yet. To me, this is the best of both worlds. Having instant access to a new software update when it’s made available to everyone is simply awesome, and something that Android will NEVER be able to do.
This is Apple’s new cloud data storage system. Here, for free, you will be able to upload all of your documents, pictures (for 30 days), music, movies and apps to the cloud for access on up to 5 iDevices at any given point. Well, Google has had this for awhile with GMail, Google Docs, Picasa, Google Music, YouTube and so on. Amazon also has this available as well for Android users. Not to be left out is Windows Phone and their SkyDrive account which gives 25GB of data free per Windows acount. So Apple is merely catching up to the competition with this one. I have to say that (without trying it yet) this will probably be a much more seamless experience than the others already have in place. Google needs to combine all of the mentioned services to provide a cleaner overall experience and Windows Phone just needs a cleaner SkyDrive implementation (which is rumored for Mango).
The new web browser for iOS 5 will finally feature tabbed browsing as well as the ability to “open new tab in background.” The tabbed feature is extremely welcomed. The latter is something being praised by BGR for being “amazing!” You gotta be kidding me! A feature that simple shouldn’t be praised for that, rather a welcome to the party because Android’s had that ability to do both for a while now.
So these are the big features for the new iUpdate. They are definitely all welcomed and will greatly improve the user experience in iOS. It’s just hilarious how many of these features have been implemented for months or years on BlackBerry’s, Androids and Windows Phones and being treated like they’ve never been seen before. Even some other features I didn’t highlight such as Reminders and a Thumb Keyboard simply copy existing apps (EverNote, thumb Keyboard) that have been around for ages. But hey, they say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery……..unless you’re Apple and imitation leads to a lawsuit.