October 12, 2011

iOS 5 Released


Today Apple released it’s long awaited iOS 5. It’s available to download now once you hook your compatible Apple Device. The big software update features some enticing new applications for your iOS Device. Already the download of the iOS 5 is slow due to the large amount of people downloading at once.

The coolest feature, Siri, in my opinion is left out for every Apple Device besides the new iPhone 4S. Siri is a new voice control that is unique in a way that it’s AI (Artificial Intelligence). For the first time, people can really talk to their device with conversational English and access more apps than ever with Siri. Even though Siri is left out for the rest of us, there are plenty of exciting new features for the iOS 5. Apple Boasts that there are over 200 new features to the iOS 5!

Let me share with you my favourite features:

The iOS 5 is here!


Apple is following the gadget trend of giving people cloud space for the first time. There giving a hefty 5GB of free space to store our own files and sync them from our computers to our Apple Devices seamlessly and wirelessly.

5GB is a lot of space compared to DropBox’s free 2GB space offering. What’s even better is Apple is providing free unlimited cloud space for all of your iTunes bought apps, music and videos, which will definitely make the 5GB feel even larger! Once you update to iOS 5, you’ll be asked to create an iCloud account, and I for one, can’t wait to get started!

Notification Center

One of the sexiest updates from iOS 5 is the Notification Center. Now text messages, and other notifications are displayed at the top of the screen in a subtle non-intrusive way. You can choose to tap it to switch to the application, or you can ignore it and it folds away.

Notification Center also changes the locked screen, taking a page from the jail broken app, LockScreen. Notifications organize themselves on your LockScreen in a tight aesthetically pleasing manner, with instant accessibility by swiping the specific notification across.

Pictured above, iOS 5 also allows you to pull down the top of the screen in any app to access all of your notifications including hour by hour weather and stocks easily. There definitely will be more applications made specifically for this Notification Center panel, so usability of this feature would increase over time.


iMessage is a dagger into the monopoly BlackBerry had with its BBM users. Now Apple Device users can instantly message other iOS 5 users without texting by default. The messaging is instantaneous and can be used with 3G and Wi-Fi.

If you are texting someone who doesn’t have the iOS 5, it will send as a regular text message with no need to manually change the settings. You can see when the person you texted read the message you sent as well as see a nicely animated “…” bubble when they are replying. It is awesome that Apple finally made official with what What’sApp and other third party apps provided before for the iPhone. A bonus however, is that iTouch and iPad users can iMessage as well, which definitely boosts the value of having a iTouch.

Along with this new platform of messaging from iOS 5; the iOS 5 update also has a full Emoji Keyboard, split keyboard for iPad, and customizable word corrections.

Twitter Integration

iOS 5 brings with it, a full Twitter integration. Now you can link your Twitter account to your Apple Device once, without ever signing in again. Twitter integration, disappointingly doesn’t bring with it a new Twitter Client program for the iOS, but it does let you tweet your pictures, location, webpages, and YouTube videos, directly from the respective apps without switching to a Twitter Client. This provides a faster Twitter experience and a more inclination to share everything on Twitter than ever before.


This totally new feature makes To-Do lists easier to, well, do. You can set different reminders for different locations. An example would be if you need to pick up milk from Safeway, you can set it so that whenever you’re near a Safeway, your iOS device will remind you of your task. The UI looks clean and slick like everything else in the new iOS 5.

Most underrated new feature in my opinion!

Besides Reminders, the Apple Calendar app has also had an upgrade. The Calendar can be seen from a year point of view if you have an iPad, or weekly if you have a iPhone or iTouch. With this new Weekly view, you can touch and drag  your events similar to the look and feel of Google Calendars. I haven’t tried integrating it with Google Calendars yet, but there probably will be compatibility. (Fingers Crossed)

And there you have it, my favourite features of the new iOS 5. Many people were wanting a bit more, especially Siri for the iPhone 4 at the very least, but gone are the days of iOS 4 point whatever.

What do you think about the iOS 5? What’s your favourite feature? Comment Below! 

About the Author

Mark Woo
Mark Woo
Mark has written for Asian lifestyle blog on their Tech/Gadgets section. He has also written for under his M's Food Court Corner. Mark currently owns Using his experiences in Vancouver's night club industry, NocVan is a one of a kind night life blog. Mark is passionate about video gaming, tech blogging, and the NBA.

  • Jon

    Siri is the only real selling point for me. The others have existed in some form or another on other mobile devices or various apps… way to go Apple 😛

    and Twitter integration… I like my hootsuite 🙂

    • Some are saying that a jailbroken Iphone 4 could have Siri =)

  • Anonymous

    My dad wants to get the iPhone 4S even though he bought iPhone 4 not too long ago. >.< He didn't even know what the added features of 4S are until I explained that there's Siri. I agree with Jon that that's the only selling point for 4S. My dad plans to give the 4 to my mom (who I doubt will know how to use it). What are your thoughts on 4S? Are the new features worth the price? My dad needs to use it for business purposes (e.g., texting, emailing, accessing the internet, and taking photos), but I don't know if a 4S is necessary…

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