What’s new with iOS 6?
It’s easy to get turn-by-turn navigational assistance from Siri, but a rash of wrong map directions and missing features can make you wonder why you suddenly feel the need for more than just your iPhone. Don’t let it get to you, though. Just sit back, relax, and ask Siri about your favorite sports team and where to watch the game; complain about it using iOS 6’s built-in Facebook updates; or tweet about it to release some frustration. What might really come in handy is a passbook ticket to Castries, Saint Lucia, where you can capture some awesome panoramic shots for your shared photo streams. There, calls from the office can be ignored with the Do Not Disturb phone feature or a custom photo message reply of a medley of palm trees. In fact, there are plenty of new and updated toys – from the Facetime to Find My Friends features – on the iPhone5. And no, you don’t have to be in St. Lucia to use them, though I recommend giving it a try. Talk about the accessibility features, Chinese features, and new store updates.
Still listed as Beta. I’m glad it’s getting some updates. Siri can now tell you about sports, update your Facebook or Twitter, launch an app, reserve a table at the latest trendy restaurant, and help you end your evening with tickets to a movie.
There is a lot of controversy over this new feature. All prior iOS devices had Google’s mapping software built in, but this new version is from Apple, TomTom, and more. Accuracy and an ability to actually get you somewhere are expectations of any map, but so far the experience has fallen short of Apple’s design perfectionism. No official response has been made to the user outcry, but they have posted a featured section in the app store linking to other map apps.
Consolidation, simplicity, and minimalism are responses to lack of Near Field Communication (NFC) here. All your membership cards, coupons, event tickets, and boarding passes can be stored in one app. Some have complained about errors when attempting to load the app store link, but right out of the gate this new app has been very popular, which hypothetically could be causing app store woes.
FaceTime and Phone
Now you can use FaceTime over your cellular data plan – 3G for the 3GS, 4 and 4S models; and LTE with the iPhone 5. Service providers have had mixed results with AT&T, which blocks it unless you have a shared data plan. Verizon is also happy to charge you with any overages and not fight the FCC. This app is great for getting in touch with someone who is down a phone and has an iPad around. With a retina display you can clearly see who is calling in on your video chat and choose to ignore it or not. You can reply with a text, send a caller straight to voicemail, or set a reminder instead of taking the call.
Safari, Sharing, and Accessibility
Take your browsing to the cloud; start on one device and move to the next. You can, for instance, move entire web pages to your reading list for offline viewing, instead. However you decide to approach a site, when you are ready you can easily go full screen to focus on your task or zoom in on specifics; or retain a normal size to share what you find on Twitter or Facebook. For those with attention management problems or anyone assisting students with disabilities, you will find new features to reinforce focus by disabling the home button until a teacher overrides it. Finally, iOS 6 offers updates to VoiceOver and AssistiveTouch.
Find My iPhone, My Friends, and share a Photostream
Looking for someone or something? A new lost mode for your iPad or iPhone can send a message while you continue to track it in lockdown mode, which requires a password. After it’s back in your hands – and you’re $50 poorer after gifting a good Samaritan – go ahead and find your friends’ set alerts when they finally leave work to head over. That way you can prepare your Shared Photostream of panoramas and send them to your Apple TV for a party, where you’re likely to take some new ones that can be added instantly.
Siri, Safari, iPhone, FaceTime, Passbook, Apple TV, iPad, and iOS are trademarks of Apple, Inc.
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