More on iPhone OS 4 & New Features for iPad

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OS 4 preview event

Image Source: gdgt

Apple’s big preview event yesterday for the upcoming new iPhone OS 4.0 gave us a rundown of its hottest new features.  Since iPhone OS is run by both the iPad and the iPhone, OS 4.0 is the next major operating system upgrade for both devices. The iPhone will get it this summer, while it will come to the iPad in the fall.  I’m still not sure why there’s a delay in making it available for the iPad.

As mentioned earlier, the biggest new feature in OS 4 is multitasking – or, in reality, a major expansion of the multitasking capabilities, which have previously been limited to just a select few Apple apps.

Multitasking should allow the iPad to really come into its own as a workhorse mobile device – but there are a number of other notable new features coming to it via OS 4.0 as well.  Here’s a quick run-through of some of them:



Power users on the iPhone have learned that when you accumulate a lot of apps – especially if you get up into the 150+ apps region – organizing your apps and your home screens becomes a huge pain in the neck.

The iPhone has been crying out for better ways to arrange apps and home screens for a long while, and iPad users will be feeling the same pain as soon as they either sync over large numbers of apps, or get new ones to fill up 10+ home screens.

Folders should help a lot in this area. It’s at least a good first step towards giving us better ways to organize our apps and home screen/s.  Here’s a slice of what Steve and Co. had to say about them:

Drag and drop apps onto one another to create folders — the name auto-populates but you can edit it. This is pretty hot.

Folders can live in the dock, too. “So, that is folders!” Applause. “An incredibly great drag and drop UI with intelligent naming. You used to be able to see 180 apps in your phone over those 11 pages. If you replaced every one of those with a folder, it’s over 2,000!”

Enhanced Email

The two big items here are Universal Inbox (showing all your mail accounts in one inbox, without having to switch back and forth between them) and support for more than one Exchange account.  Both very nice additions.

Game Center

Apple’s new social gaming network – with friends to find and play against, leaderboards, achievements, and so on.

The Rest

There was a quick mention of some new Enterprise features, mostly related to some enhanced security items.

iAd is Apple’s new entry into the mobile advertising arena – as in, they want to sell all the ad space in free apps rather than having Google and others do so.

I’m happy with what we’ve heard on OS 4.0, and can’t wait to see it in action on both my iPhone and iPad. Really wish we didn’t have to wait until Fall to see it on the iPad. 

What are your thoughts on OS 4 on the iPad?

Patrick Jordan

Founder and Editor in Chief of iPad Insight. Husband, father to a lovely daughter, Commander of the Armies of the North, dog lover (especially Labs), Austinite, former Londoner, IT consultant, huge sports nut, iPad and mobile tech blogger, mobile apps junkie.

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