iPhone OS 4.0 Is Finally Revealed

iphone os4.0

Apple's iPhone OS 4 event ended just few hours ago and now we finally have fresh information about the upcoming operational system.

So the main idea claimed by Jobs was that it has seven tent poles. Here they are:

1. Multitasking!

Apple CEO told us the main problem with multitasking until now was that it drains battery life. But the developers found a way to solve it. They named it Pandora. It is an API for developers that will help them to control the behavior of an app while it is working in a background. There is an audio API that lets you control the music playing while you're working on anything else. VoIP API allows you to stay online in Skype even if you have switched to another app - the call will come through in a pop up. Navigation apps can give you directions while you're listening to music. Besides that Pandora includes other features, describing the work of multitasking in iPhone OS 4.0.
The way multitasking works on iPhone is pretty simple - special dock at the bottom of the display shows you the opened apps so you can easily switch it anytime you want.

2. Folders support.

There are 185,000 apps in the App Store available for download and sometimes it is pretty hard to manage the list when you have too many of them. At the moment you can just flip the pages to find the necessary app, but iPhone OS 4.0 allows you to create folders so you'd know where exactly your app must be. The process is easy - just drag one app on top of another and it will instantly make a folder. The icon will change it look so you could understand it's an app. With this Drag and drop UI you will be able to see more than 2,000 apps on your device.

3. Enhanced mail.

Now you can have all your e-mail accounts managed in one inbox. Additional features include fast inbox switching, organizing mails by thread, ability to directly get an attachment.

4. iBooks on the iPhone.

Well, even Jobs didn't say much about that. The iBooks app will be available in iPhone OS 4.0, the library synchronizing with iPad is supported along with free Winnie the Pooh book.

5. Enterprise Features.

In a few words it includes data protection, wireless app distribution, improved mail, mobile device management and SSL VPN support. Apple has already posted additional information on it here.

6. Game Center.

At the moment there are 50,000 games in the App Store, and if compared to PSP and DS Apple just blows them of the water. To make gaming better company added a social gaming network. It seems like we can draw an analogy with XboX Live and the idea looks pretty good.

7. iAd.

iAd is a new kind of advertisements that interacts with users in a special way. It looks like an app, because there are so many unique features you can do with it, and no sponsors' URLs opening in a browser anymore. iAds keep you in your app and are built into iPhone OS. The business scheme is 60/40: 60% of revenues go to developer, and 40% to Apple.

At the end of the event Steve Jobs and his colleagues Scott Forstall and Phil Schiller answered a few questions. Here what’ve got:

  • No Java and Flash support in OS 4.0.
  • No unsigned apps support.
  • You won’t have to close apps when multi-tasking.
  • The App Store is constantly improving and the company works on its discoverability and organization. (Game Center will help spread the viral information about apps)

And, finally, iPhone OS 4.0 will work on iPhone 3GS and iPod Touch 2G. iPhone 2G and iPod Touch 2G also supported but with a lack of some features and multitasking. The iPad support will be announced later this autumn.

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