Apple make it pretty clear that the new iOS 6 features will take your device in a completely new direction, and after having a dig through we agree that some 4S owners might not want to upgrade to iPhone 5, especially considering the enhancements you can get just with a software update.
The iOS 6 release date is expected to land around the same time as the next iPhone, which will be in fall this year but an exact day has not be confirmed at the time of writing. The most impressive feature for us is the improvements to maps, which will deliver what iOS devices always needed, and that’s true turn-by-turn navigation with some really cool 3D mapping mixed with Siri for something special. The iPhone users on a device older than 4S might consider upgrading to iPhone 5/4S, which would be needed if they want to enjoy Siri with the new maps.
There are of course well over 200 new features in iOS 6 and that means some will be harder to find details on, which normally means Apple will focus on a few and offer details on the others buried in documentation somewhere. Today we wanted to highlight a few of the less obvious features that we think are a nice addition to the software for iPod touch, iPad, and iPhone.
Call rejection with a number of options – in iOS 6 you will be able to reject a call in a number of ways, which will make it easier to reconnect to the caller at a later date. If you get a phone call that you don’t want to answer right away, then from iOS 6 you can ignore and send to voicemail, reply with a message rather than talk, or you can even set a reminder to call them later. This is a simple tweak that will make it much easier to deal with calls after installing iOS 6.
Reminders in iOS 6 adds in location-based support – you can now set up reminders based on certain locations, which means you can get reminded to do something when you arrive at a certain address. The new Reminders API will allow developers to connect within the app, which means an app can open each time you turn up at a certain store.
In the UK this could be your Tesco app for collecting points, and the same can be for stores around the world that use a similar system. The possibilities are endless for apps that can use this new reminder ability, and at WWDC we saw a Starbucks app demoed with iOS 6.
Spotlight gets a minor adjustment – If you find it hard to work out what homescreen an app is located on this will be much easier with iOS 6, which is thanks to Spotlight showing the name of folders apps are located in when you search.
The iPhone 4S and upcoming 6th generation iPhone have the added benefit of Siri with iOS 6 enhancements – you’ll be able to write messages on Facebook and Twitter with Siri, and this feature also includes some smart features thanks to using references in your Contacts while you dictate. Apple has been keen to show how much smarter Siri is becoming, which includes answering the height of Sports stars and the finer details of movies. There will be a lot more hidden features with Siri in iOS 6 and we’ll be bringing these to you over the coming weeks, although for now you can see a video below that showcases most of the new Siri features within iOS 6.
Will iOS 6 be the update you expected and more, or do you feel iOS lacks a number of features you have been waiting for?