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What is New is iPhone OS 4

This is what Steve Jobs revealed about OS 4. He talked about over 1500 new APIs, Over 100 new user features and 7 tent pole – the key new features.

Multitasking is finally there! So is API to access Calendar!

But, I think the biggest innovation is iAd, where interactive ads will get embedded within the application.

iBook feature of buy once read either on iPhone or iPad will give fillip to iPad!

Important new APIs in OS 4:

  • Calendar access
  • In-app SMS
  • Photo Library access
  • Quick Look
  • Full access to still and video camera data
  • Full map overlays
  • Accelerate (for hardware accelerated math functions)
  • Automated testing

Significant new user features:

  • Create playlists
  • 5x digital zoom
  • Tap to focus on video
  • Gift apps
  • Geo-tagging places in the photo app
  • Change the home screen wallpaper
  • Bluetooth keyboards
  • Spell checker
  • File & delete Mail search results

7 tent pole – the key new features:

  1. Multitasking: It’s easy to do this in a way that drains battery life, and a way that reduces performance of the foreground app. If you don’t do it right, your phone will feel sluggish. We figured out how to implement multitasking for third party apps and avoid those things. So that’s what took so long. I’d like to demo it. We have a great UI.
  2. Folder: People have to flick from page to page to page to find them. Folder fit the bill. Let me just show you what it’s like.
  3. Enhanced mail: Unified inbox – All of your mail is in one inbox. And, we’ve made it so you can have more than one Exchange account. Open attachments – the ability to get an attachment and open it with an app for the app store.
  4. iBooks for iPhone OS 4: You can buy your books once and read them anywhere. We’re going to wirelessly sync your books between platforms. Also sync pages and bookmarks.
  5. Enhanced features for enterprise:
    1. Better data protection
    2. Mobile device management
    3. Wireless app distribution
    4. Support for multiple Exchange accounts
    5. Exchange Server 2010
    6. SSL VPN support
  6. Game Center: We want to make gaming even better on the iPhone – so we added a social gaming network.
  7. iAd – Mobile advertising: Search is not happening on phones; people are using apps. And this is where the opportunity is to deliver advertising is. You know the ads on the web — they’re eye catching and interactive, but they don’t deliver emotion. What we want to do with iAds is deliver interaction and emotion. So that’s what iAd is all about. It’s about motion plus interactivity. The ads keep you in your app. Today when you click on a banner ad, it yanks you out of your app and throws you onto the advertiser’s web page. So people don’t click on the ads. Because iAd is in the iPhone OS itself, we have figured out how to do interactive and video content without ever taking you out of the app. For devs to add this to their apps is really simple. They can do it in an afternoon. Apple is going to sell and host the ads, and we’re going to do a 60/40 split.

Here is the full transcript – Live from Apple’s iPhone OS 4 event! – from


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More Stories By Udayan Banerjee

Udayan Banerjee is CTO at NIIT Technologies Ltd, an IT industry veteran with more than 30 years' experience. He blogs at http://setandbma.wordpress.com.
The blog focuses on emerging technologies like cloud computing, mobile computing, social media aka web 2.0 etc. It also contains stuff about agile methodology and trends in architecture. It is a world view seen through the lens of a software service provider based out of Bangalore and serving clients across the world. The focus is mostly on...

  • Keep the hype out and project a realistic picture
  • Uncover trends not very apparent
  • Draw conclusion from real life experience
  • Point out fallacy & discrepancy when I see them
  • Talk about trends which I find interesting
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