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Apple iOS 6 Mobile OS Review (on an iPad 3) - The new and improved features and apps of iOS 6

We give the just-released Apple iOS 6 mobile operating system a run around the block, and provide our impressions.

| Tablets in Mobile Devices | Posted: Sep 25, 2012 2:57 pm
TweakTown Rating: 90%Manufacturer: Apple

The new and improved features and apps of iOS 6

 

Maps

 

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Apple has ditched its relationship with Google for its map imagining and has gone out on its own with iOS 6. Some like the new Maps and others don't. It features rotation and there is also voice guided turn-by-turn directions.

 

Phone

 

Well, on the new iPhone 5 we have new call response options - where you now have more options at the phone level of things, you can now decline an incoming call, instantly reply with a text message, or set a callback reminder.

 

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On top of these options, there's now a "Do Not Disturb" option, which is a great idea. You can turn this option on and it will disable all incoming calls from every number, and all notifications - but - you can allow calls to come in from certain numbers, for example, your wife, significant other, or your boss. There's also the option to enable specific contact groups - very nifty.

 

FaceTime over Cellular

 

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FaceTime was launched with the iPhone 4, and never really took off as much as Apple thought it would. Sure, it's a great feature, but it was severely limited in the fact that it only worked over Wi-Fi networks - meaning you had to be either at home, at a friend's house with Wi-Fi enabled or at work with Wi-Fi enabled. Now FaceTime works over cellular networks.

 

Passbook

 

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Passbook has made it into the new iOS 6, but is pretty much limited to the United States right now. Apple decided to not include near-field communication (NFC) technology in the new iPhone 5, so this is the closest thing you'll get for now. Passbook lets you store your boarding passes, movie tickets, retail coupons, loyalty cards and more, all in the single place. Passbook will let you scan your iPhone or iPod touch to check in to flights, a movie, or redeem a coupon.

 

Shared Photo Streams

 

Those of you who run multiple Apple devices will love the new Shared Photo Streams option, where you can simply select photos from the Photos app, tap the Share button, and choose who you want to share your snaps with - it's that simple. iCloud friends on an iOS 6-based device, or a Mac running Mountain Lion get the photos delivered immediately in the Photos app (on iOS) or in iPhoto (on the Mac.

 

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Shared Photo Streams also don't count toward your iCloud storage - which is another reason you should really keep your photos on the cloud, especially the iCloud.

 

Facebook and Twitter integration

 

Oh yes. This is the granddaddy of all features, in my opinion. Facebook and Twitter are now both deeply integrated into iOS 6 itself. You can change your Facebook status, or tweet off to Twitter by just sliding down from the top of the notification bar - choose Facebook or Twitter, type your status update or tweet and you're done. This is wonderfully simple, and will get people using the social networks much more.

 

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Sharing photos and content directly from the Camera or Photos is easier than ever, uploading something directly to Facebook, or sharing your location from Maps. If you don't want to tap, you can even ask Siri to do the updating for you.

 

Siri

 

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Siri has gotten older, and wiser with iOS 6. Siri now understands more languages, and works in more countries - something that was severely lacking in iOS 5. I tried Siri on my iPad, and I'm still not impressed with it, but I'm based in Australia so it's not all there and working. I asked her to "visit http://www.tweaktown.com" and all I got was something about some Twitter website - ugh.

 

Mail

 

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Mail gets a much-needed redesign, with an easier-to-look-at interface, which is better for reading and writing. iOS 6's Mail app includes a VIP list which doesn't let you miss an important e-mail from someone such as your boss, accountant or partner. Photos and videos are easier than ever to add to e-mail messages, and to refresh your mailboxes, all you have to do is swipe down - swish.

 

Safari

 

I've never personally liked Safari, but iOS 6's new Safari app does sport some nice features, finally. iCloud Tabs will now keep track of all of the pages you have opened across all of your devices, meaning if you were on your iPad and needed to run out of the house but didn't want to lose that website you were on, you can jump on your iPhone and continue reading that same site once you reach your destination.

 

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Safari also now has the ability of saving webpages, and not just links into something Apple calls the "Reading List". Safari has never been better - and is finally catching up to the competition found in Google's Chrome web browser. In addition we found that webpage loading seems a bit quicker, too.

 

Camera

 

iOS 6's Camera app has also been updated, and for the iPhone and iPod touch, it now features a new panorama feature. All you need to do is hold the phone still, turn the phone 240 degrees (horizontally, or vertically!) and it will then create a seamless, high-resolution panorama. Expect to see a bunch of panorama shots hit Instagram, Facebook and more in the near future!

 

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