By: Chris O'Shea
This week Apple unveiled its new iPhone operating system — iOS 6 for those bowing down to the altar of Jobs — and the world sat up and took notice. Since we count ourselves among the Apple fans, we thought we'd go through some of the more interesting features. Yes, just a few. There are 92 new additions, alterations, and fixes, so unless you're the kind of person who likes reading a 7,000 word post about all things Apple, we thought this would be the best approach. Let's get to it:
- New Maps. This is the biggest one. Apple has finally — after years of speculation — given Google Maps the boot and has created its own map platform that will come with the new iOS. One big change coming with Apple's maps is it uses Vector graphics, instead of bitmap graphics. Vector is better because it updates the map quicker, so when you scroll across the map in the future, you shouldn't have to wait for it to load. Not that there won't be glitches. As Gizmodo notes, "Apple's new Maps app confuses Greenland for the Indian Ocean, the Indian Ocean for the Arctic Ocean, the middle of Africa for the North Pacific, and the southern ocean for the North Atlantic." Well hey, it isn't ready yet! There will also be built in turn-by-turn directions, which is a welcome addition. No more looking down at your phone while driving so that you don't get lost. Not that we ever do that.
- FaceTime Update. We're not going to pretend to be big users of FaceTime. We'll never understand why some people get excited about seeing the person they're talking to. But some people do love video chat, and for them, having FaceTime over 3G is exciting news. Just remember, this means people can FaceTime you any moment they want, so please, put on some pants for god's sake.
- Siri Update. Again, we're not big fans of Siri — in fact, we turn it off to save some battery — but a lot of people like the "personal assistant". The new Siri will come equipped with the ability to check scores, look up movie times, book a restaurant reservation and get business ratings from Yelp. Not bad, but we still don't see Siri being that useful. In the time it takes to tell the lady to do something five times, you can just as easily do it manually.
- Facebook Integration. For Facebook fans, this is huge. Much like how Twitter is integrated into the iPhone, you can now do the same with Facebook. As Apple explained, the update allows you to "Share a photo to Facebook right from Camera or Photos. Post your location right from Maps. Brag about a high score right from Game Center. If you have your hands full, just ask Siri to post for you." Let the over-sharing begin!
[Pic via Flickr - Brett Jordan]