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Apple previews iOS 5 features at WWDC

Latest version of the mobile operating system finally catches the competition, with notifications and twitter integration topping the bill

Steve Jobs took to the stage at yesterday’s Apple Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) to unveil the latest version of the iOS mobile operating system. iOS 5 will contain new features, updates and fixes that bring the iPhone up to speed with the competition. Here are just a few of the highlights:

Notifications in iOS 5

Notifications, a major bugbear for iPhone owners, has received a complete overhaul; the annoying screen-filling pop-ups have been replaced by an unobtrusive notification bar. Dragging it down from the top of the screen reveals all your unread notifications, in a similar manner to Google’s Android operating system. These will also be viewable on the lock screen so you can see what you’ve missed at a glance. Weather and stock updates can also be added, but there’s no sign of support for third-party widgets.

iOS 5 iMessage

iMessage, a new universal messaging system between iOS devices that won’t use up your text allowance, looks set to challenge BlackBerry Messenger. It will use Apple IDs to communicate between devices, so even iPods and iPads will be able to keep in touch with iPhone owners, as long as they have WiFi access. Combined with FaceTime, the iPad and iPod Touch will soon be just as easy to use for communication as the iPhone.

Twitter integration in iOS 5

The camera App will finally support using a volume button as a hardware shutter, as well as in-app cropping, red-eye removal and automatic image enhancements. You can also take photos straight from the lock screen, without having to enter a password first. You can also tweet your photos directly from the camera App itself, as Twitter has been integrated throughout the phone.

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