iPhone 4S owners are poised to become members of an elite class. Their new phones boast an improved camera, dual antennae and an unpaid personal intern named Siri — all relevant talking points in “Who’s got the real iPhone?” one-upsmanship battles.
Luckily, though, even 4S have-nots can enjoy the benefits of iOS 5, one of the new phone’s best features. Released Wednesday, Apple’s new mobile OS is a no-brainer download (we gave it an enthusiastic 8 verdict). It’s also entirely free, and compatible with iPhone 3GS, 4 and 4S, the 3rd- and 4th-gen iPod touch media players, and iPad and iPad 2.
Downloaded the new OS? Good. The blogosphere is teeming with iOS 5 feature guides, but aside from exposing Easter eggs hidden in Siri voice recognition, many sites are glossing over some of the OS’s most hidden or novel new features. Here we explore some of the more notable or quirky additions to grace our iPhone and iPad interfaces.
User-Defined Keyboard Shortcuts
At first glance, iOS 5 does nothing to address the pain and embarrassment of auto-correction mistakes. But go to your Settings menu, and navigate to GeneralKeyboard. Scroll to the bottom, and you’ll find a prompt to add a new shortcut. Just type in the word or phrase that deserves a shortcut, and then plug in the shortcut itself.
Now, for example, when you type in “fwiw,” iOS will provide an auto-correct prompt for “for what it’s worth.” It may not be a Twitter-friendly tool that’s compatible with character count requirements, but it can help ease the pain of constantly miss-typing (or miss-tapping, rather) long or vexing words.
And the fun doesn’t end there. I see great potential for mischief too: Grab your pal’s iOS 5 device, and begin entering shortcuts for common words like “hi” or “siri,” as in the screenshot above. Hilarity abounds as your friend suspects his or her iDevice is suffering demonic possession.
Create Custom Vibrations for Stealth Alerts
You’re in a high-powered business meeting. Your phone volume is mute because you don’t want to offend the client. But you really need to receive that critical phone call from your pilates instructor scheduling a rain check. By assigning a unique vibration sequence to any contact, you can leave your iPhone on the table and listen for the sweet euphony of a customized “zizip, zizip” as your device resonates against the table top.
Interested? Go to Contacts, choose a contact and tap Edit. Navigate to VibrationCreate New Vibration. You’ll be greeted by the screen above. Simply tap out a new vibration rhythm, save it, and prepare for near-stealth notifications of when special people are trying to reach you.
Create LED Flashes for Visual Alerts
We all have different preferences when it comes to how we receive iOS notifications. Some people like audible alerts, some like vibrating alerts, some like no alerts at all. But the more flamboyant among us may prefer a new visual alert buried in the Accessibility menu in General settings. Toggling on “LED Flash For Alerts” will prompt your iPhone to trigger your camera’s LED whenever you receive a message or email when the phone is set to silent mode.
This feature offers great utility to anyone who can’t hear, but we also see great potential for multiplayer gamers who like to create a chilly-spooky vibe in darkened rooms. Huzzah! says the flash. Your pizza has arrived!
Much has been made about iOS 5’s new text formatting options. You can select a word or text string, and then make it bold, italic or underline. That’s well publicized. But check out all the other options that become available when you hold down a selection of a word.
The Suggest function provides a list of other words you may have preferred to type. Quote Level either increases or decreases the number of vertical lines that appear before text — helpful when you’re annotating a threaded conversation. But one of the niftiest options is Define, shown here, which provides a tight (but surprisingly robust) dictionary entry for the selection, complete with a definition, usage examples, and often information on word derivatives and origin.
Cover Your Digital Tracks
The new iOS includes a number of key features that foster more private, secure use. In Safari’s settings menu (shown above), you can toggle on Private Browsing. Once enabled, Safari will refrain from building a history of your browser activity (hey, we all have something to hide).
Over in the new Message app, which provides for seamless transitions between traditional carrier-hosted text messaging and Apple-hosted iMessages, you can define whether to allow Read Receipts, which notify your friends when you’ve read their messages. So, if you want to continue the charade of, “Oh, did you send me a message? Never saw it,” then head to SettingsMessages, and turn Send Read Receipts to off.
Finally, you can put an end to those awkward conversations that occur when you leave your iPhone on the table, and someone reads the first few sentences of one of your text messages or emails on the lock screen. Go to SettingsNotifications and turn off Show Preview for both Messages and Mail.
Check App Usage, Dispatch Offenders
If you fear your iDevice is approaching the limits of its storage capacity, head on over to SettingsGeneralUsage, and start surveying your worst offenders. Clicking on an app name will provide a bit more detail — specifically, the footprint of the document and data files associated with the app. You’ll also see a button to delete the app entirely.
Alternate Routes in Maps
Views of alternate routes have always been available in the desktop version of Google Maps, and now they’re finally available on iOS devices too. After defining where you are and where you want to be, just tap Route 1, Route 2, etc., to toggle between Google’s recommended directions.
Did I leave out any hidden features that really blow your mind? Please comment below, or tweet me with suggestions. I, meanwhile, will be parsing through the 190-odd other new features released in iOS 5.
Article source: http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2011/10/ios-5-hidden-setting/
Apple reportedly facing “server” problem, new iPhone 4S owners frustrated with activations.
How popular is the iPhone 4S? Well, ask the new owners that are complaining about difficulty activating the new smartphone.
Apparently, the new iPhone 4S (and the 8GB iPhone 4S) comes with iOS 5 out of the box. iOS 5 includes a new feature called PC Free courtesy of the iCloud, that will allow new phones to activate without the iTunes, or the conventional plug-to-PC process. In short, iPhone 4s users can activate without iTunes.
But the cloud-based activation is reportedly facing a little to moderate (some saying serious) issue today.
According to multiple reports, new iPhones, specifically the iPhone 4S are having issues regarding the wireless activation procedure, with the message “Could Not Activate iPhone,” adding that “Your activation is still pending,” and the owners are told to wait for a notification from Apple via e-mail regarding the activation process. The message also said that the problem is related to “connecting to the servers,” also prompting the user to “try again later.”
One new iPhone 4S wrote in Twitter, “iPhone activation system overloaded? I’m having trouble activating my new 4S,” another one added, “2 hours still no iPhone activation!” Majority of complainants posting in Twitter say they own ATT iPhone 4S, while some say they own a Sprint iPhone 4S.
The new iPhone 4S is available in other countries outside United States like Australia, Japan, Germany and United Kingdom, so it is highly possible that the servers that activates the phone is suffering from a “congestion.”
Aside from the new orders from Apple and wireless carriers stores, a number of customers who pre-ordered the iPhone 4S online also received the phone today. According to Apple, more than 1 million orders online were recorded the first day pre-orders for iPhone 4S.
After the many rumours about an iPhone 5, which finally proved to be incorrect as the iPhone 4S was announced, it’s now the iPad that is being targeted. The Asian CNet reports that its possible an iPad Mini exists.
Such a device has been compared to the Kindle Fire, tablet/reader which was launched in the United States for 199 dollars. An eventual iPad Mini would compete with this device, with a 7″ display, while an additional offering from Apple would increase the number of tactile tablets available in their range.
Early next year?
The same rumour is also being spread by an analyst at Ticonderoga who cites sources from Chinese and Taiwanese component suppliers, with it being suggested that the device could even maintain the same 10″ display of the current model, but could be positioned at a lower pricing point – around 200 dollars… while awaiting the release of the iPad 3 in the second half of 2012.
It should be noted that Steve Jobs was opposed to the idea of a 7″ iPad format during a conference in late 2010, believing that the size wasn’t adapted. As for reducing prices, as we have seen with the release of the iPhone 4S, while many were expecting an iPhone 5 and a low cost model to be released, Apple has continued to maintain their strong product coherence despite the economic opportunities that such a move would open in emerging markets.
SAN DIEGO, Calif. — Location-based startup Foursquare today unveiled a new app feature that allows users to discover nearby places of interest based on their likes and dislikes.
Dubbed “Radar,” the feature sends push notifications to your iOS 5-based iPhone when you’re in the neighborhood of a place you’ve been meaning to visit. Radar is based on your existing Foursquare “lists” of favorite places, so instead of suggesting restaurants or stores you’ve never heard of, the app will notify you that you’re close to some place you actually want to visit. Foursquare tied Radar to Apple’s launch of iOS 5 on Wednesday, which finally brought strong push notification technology options to Apple’s mobile platform.
Sound familiar? It is. After Facebook’s 2010 launch of its “Places” feature – which offers many features similar to Foursquare’s service, including check-ins — it seemed as if Dennis Crowley’s small 80-man startup was all but dead in the water. Similarly, Facebook’s “Deals” program offers a location-based deal notification service much like Foursquare’s daily-deals program, created in partnership with LivingSocial.
“We weathered that storm,” said Holger Luedorf, Foursquare VP of mobile and international, in an interview, noting that Facebook recently shuttered its deals program while Foursquare’s remains strong. “Honestly, we’ve recently announced over 1 billion check-ins, with a user base of over 10 million people. That’s already huge, but we’re focused on growing even more and not spending time worrying about our competitors,” Luedorf said.
Currently, Radar is available only to iOS 5 users, but Luedorf says an Android version is currently in the works. The upgraded app is currently available via Foursquare’s web site.
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iPhone 4S also comes with alternating antennae for better call reception, CDMA and GSM support, a personal assistant called Siri, iCloud and Bluetooth 4.0 wireless technology. However, missing were prominent specs like edge-to-edge design, a larger display, 4G LTE and Near Field Communication technology.
One big rival of the iPhone 4S will be the Motorola Droid Bionic. The much anticipated Motorola Droid Bionic hit the shelves in September, more than eight months after the device was unveiled at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nev. in January. The phone is completely modified from the original one introduced during CES 2011.
Specs on the Droid Bionic are impressive; Droid comes with a lot of the standard qualities which have made Droid a household name in smartphones. This includes a 4.3-inch HD screen with a Corning Gorilla scratch-free screen, two cameras: front-facing for video chat and 8-megapixel back camera, Adobe Flash preloaded, 32 GB of memory and a slim frame.
The smartphone also comes with Video Surf, a Shazam-like app for videos, Motoprint for wireless printing, NFL Mobile and support for Netflix.
It will be interesting to compare the features of the two competitors.
Size: Droid Bionic has a dimension of 127.5 x 66.9 x 10.99 mm and weighs up to 158g (5.6 oz). On the other hand, Apple iPhone 4S comes with 115.2 x 58.6 x 9.3 mm and weighs 140 grams.
Display: The iPhone 4S will have a 3.5-inch TFT Retina multi-touch display, with 960×640 resolutions at 330 ppi pixel density. The Motorola Droid Bionic has a 4.3-inch qHD screen that should give a resolution of 960×540-pixel at 256 ppi pixel density.
Camera: The Motorola Droid Bionic has an 8-megapixel auto-focus camera with 3264×2448 pixels, autofocus and dual LED flash, as well as a front-facing camera for video chats. The camera can shoot HD videos of up to 1080p. The iPhone 4S also comes with an 8-megapixel, 3264×2448 pixels, autofocus, LED flash camera in the front. It features a VGA front-facing camera. The camera can also shoot HD videos of up to 1080p.
Operating System: Motorola Droid Bionic runs on the Android 2.3.4 Gingerbread OS, while the iPhone 4S is loaded with the latest Apple operating system iOS 5, which brings more than 200 new features to the iPhone.
Processor: Motorola Droid Bionic comes with a dual-core 1GHz ARM Cortex-A9 processor, ULP GeForce GPU and Tegra 2 AP20H chipset, while the iPhone 4S features 1 GHz dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 processor, PowerVR SGX543MP2 GPU and an Apple A5 chipset.
Storage: The Motorola Droid Bionic has 16GB internal storage and another 16GB microSD card preinstalled, which can be expanded to 32 GB. The iPhone 4S comes in 16GB, 32GB and 64GB models. It doesn’t support a MicroSD card slot.
3G/4G: Droid Bionic has Rev. A up to 3.1 Mbps. Apple iPhone 4S, on the other hand, has HSDPA 14.4 Mbps and HSUPA 5.8 Mbps support. iPhone 4S also has CDMA EV-DO Rev. A (800, 1900 MHz) technology.
Battery: The Motorola Droid Bionic has a standard 1735 mAh battery offering talk time of 650 minutes and standby time of 200 hours, while the iPhone 4S has a Li-Po 1,420 mAh battery, with 8 hours of talk time on 3G and up to 14 hours on 2G networks (GSM).
Price: The iPhone 4S costs $199 for the 16GB model, $299 for the 32GB model and $399 for the 64GB model. The Motorola Droid Bionic is priced at $299 with a two-year contract from Verizon.
Must Read : iPhone 4S Launches Today: Top 10 Reasons Why Apple’s New iPhone is Worth Buying (PHOTOS)
Must Read : iPhone 4S With iOS 5 and Siri Begins Shipping Today: Should Rivals be Afraid?
Must Read : iPhone 4S Hits Stores Today: How and Where to Buy Apple’s Latest Smartphone Without Pre-order
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The ultrasn0w iPhone unlock tool has been updated to support handsets running iOS 5, allowing owners of iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 to upgrade to the recently released new version of the platform but still use their phones with other SIMs. The new ultrasn0w is still effectively a tethered system for the iPhone 4, the iPhone Dev Team confirmed today, since currently the iOS 5 jailbreak (and which is necessary if you then want to unlock your phone) requires a USB connection on each reboot. However, if you have an iPhone 3GS with the old bootrom, you can use redsn0w to jailbreak your phone untethered and then ultrasn0w to unlock it. There’s no timeline for an untethered iPhone 4 iOS 5 jailbreak at present, though it’s being worked on. Of course, all this depends on you having an ultrasn0w-compliant baseband, which is the reason those looking to jailbreak/unlock their iPhones should always avoid official iOS releases. redsn0w has a custom IPSW creation tool to preserve the older baseband while simultaneously enabling access to the newer iOS version. If all that sounds like too much hard work, it might be worth holding out until November when Apple will be officially offering unlocked, SIM-free iPhone 4S handsets in the US.
The ultrasn0w iPhone unlock tool has been updated to support handsets running iOS 5, allowing owners of iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 to upgrade to the recently released new version of the platform but still use their phones with other SIMs. The new ultrasn0w is still effectively a tethered system for the iPhone 4, the iPhone Dev Team confirmed today, since currently the iOS 5 jailbreak (and which is necessary if you then want to unlock your phone) requires a USB connection on each reboot.
However, if you have an iPhone 3GS with the old bootrom, you can use redsn0w to jailbreak your phone untethered and then ultrasn0w to unlock it. There’s no timeline for an untethered iPhone 4 iOS 5 jailbreak at present, though it’s being worked on.
Of course, all this depends on you having an ultrasn0w-compliant baseband, which is the reason those looking to jailbreak/unlock their iPhones should always avoid official iOS releases. redsn0w has a custom IPSW creation tool to preserve the older baseband while simultaneously enabling access to the newer iOS version.
If all that sounds like too much hard work, it might be worth holding out until November when Apple will be officially offering unlocked, SIM-free iPhone 4S handsets in the US.
While many in the iOSsphere are preordering the relentlessly familiar new iPhone 4S in record numbers, and standing in the rain to buy one today, many others simply wait. They know, they just know, that the iPhone 5 is out there. Calling to them.
Just like the mythical white iPhone did.
This week, hang onto those iPhone 5 cases, recycle your most-wanted lists, and just believe.
“There was supposed to be another phone.” — Jason Perlow, blogger, Tech Broiler, ZDNet.com
FIRST LOOK: Apple iPhone 4S
FORGET THE iPHONE 4S: Nine High-End Apple Alternatives
iPhone 4 users are waiting for iPhone 5 because they want something DIFFERENT!
This is the latest, umm, idea from Beatweek’s Bill Palmer. He acknowledges that the “iPhone 4S launch will of course be massive.”
But. “But plenty of iPhone 4 users will opt to wait for the iPhone 5, despite not knowing a thing about it for sure,” he opines.
What are they waiting for, you ask? Palmer asks that, too, and answers it. “For one thing, they want an iPhone that doesn’t
look exactly like the last three iPhones …”
You remember them: the “white iPhone 4, Verizon iPhone 4, and original iPhone 4, marking the fourth time Apple has pushed a ‘new’ iPhone out the door which employed the iPhone 4 body shell.” Well, when one puts it like that, it all
does sound soooo repetitive, so boring. What possessed 40-plus million people to keep buying the darn thing?
Not to worry, at least, not too much. “The next iPhone … will almost certainly have to look different than the 4S,” Palmer
declares. And why is that? “[B]ecause Apple will have gone to the well one too many times otherwise.”
Hang on to that “iPhone 5 case” you bought.
Remember all those “leaked” iPhone 5 cases and prototypes cases? Created by an array of companies in the $436 million case
market, they “proved” that iPhone 5 would have radical redesign: thinner, tapered, bigger screen.
Businessweek has the intriguing story of one of those case manufacturers, Hard Candy Cases, headed by a guy named Tim Hickman, who was “determined to get a jump
on production” and on his rivals.
“After three separate manufacturing partners in China sent him detailed 3D models of an iPhone with a widened, pill-shaped
“home” button and a slightly tapered back, Hickman decided to roll the dice,” Businessweek reports. “He paid $50,000 to make steel moldings to mass-produce cases for the new design and, on the morning of Apple’s
announcement, began taking orders on his website. The gamble backfired: Apple’s new iPhone 4S included no major changes to
the exterior design. The home button remained circular. Hickman suddenly owned $50,000 worth of paperweights.”
Hickman says he didn’t pay for the iPhone 5 specs: They were supplied by Far East factories that want his business. He doesn’t
think the paperweights are entirely worthless. “[H]e surmises that his prep work could ultimately pay off, and that the erroneous
design he bet on might turn up in a future Apple announcement, according to Businessweek. Sounding like a true iPhone 5 rumorista, Hickman explains why. “The data we got came from somewhere,” he says.
Maybe it came from the iOSsphere.
We want what we want on the next iPhone: 15 new features, more or less.
“I have no choice but to go ahead and update this most-wanted list because, well, a lot of you are already looking past the
4S as you continue to hold out for the true iPhone 5,” warns CNET’s Dave Carnoy, rather ominously.
The good news is that because iPhone 4S did a few things right, like having a dual-core processor, his list drops from 20
to 15 items.
Although a close reading of the slideshow creates a dispiriting realization: that for many of them, there is “zero chance”
of implementation. That would include such essentials as: micro-HDMI, a removable battery, expandable (and presumably removable)
memory and Adobe Flash support. Almost as unlikely, are more memory, built-in inductive charging, biometric security and (at slightly better odds) near-field communications for all those “wave-the-phone” payments we’ve been yearning to make.
So what can you expect? Carnoy is betting on: improved graphics, an A6 processor, support for 4G/LTE, some kind of “new design”
and maybe a larger screen.
Where have we heard all that before?
With the launch of iOS 5 on Wednesday and the iPhone 4S today, excited iOS users have queued up to make the transition to Apple’s latest and greatest. Unfortunately for many, the transition hasn’t been as smooth as they’d hoped.
A number of early adopters who tried to upgrade to iOS 5 late Wednesday and Thursday experienced errors due to a massive influx of traffic on Apple’s servers. And this morning, Verizon and ATT’s activation servers appear to be having a similar issue. Luckily, repeated attempts, or just waiting a while until server loads go down, fixes the issue for most upgraders.
Many users who tried to update on Wednesday afternoon got “Error 3200” or “Internal Service” errors because their devices weren’t able to make a connection to Apple’s servers. The issue became widespread as iOS users across the globe decided it was time to update, and Apple’s servers couldn’t keep up with the crushing volume of traffic.
At least one iPhone user who attempted the iOS 5 upgrade ended up bricking his phone after getting the Error 3200 message.
Twitter searches for Error 3200 or ATT activation reveal complaints from quite a few iOS users, and there are additional reports of Verizon having server problems Friday morning. “Error 3200” became a worldwide trending topic on Twitter by Wednesday evening.
On ATT, the error message reads: “Your activation is still pending. You will receive an email notification once your activation is complete.” Below that it reads, “We’re sorry. There was a problem connecting to the server. Please try again later.” Some suffering from this issue have already deactivated their previous iPhones (including our own editor, Jon Phillips). These folks are now left without any cell service until server loads die down.
If you want to avoid such issues, it may be best to hold off a few days or weeks to make the jump. Although Apple has an extremely robust beta program — iOS 5 has been available to developers since May — there is also still a possibility of system bugs, which would inevitably be ironed out within the next few weeks. To wit: When the iPhone 4 and iOS 4 launched last summer, Apple issued the iOS 4.1 update that fixed problems like sluggish performance on the 3GS and proximity-sensor issues.
Another thing to consider: If you’ve jailbroken your device, when you upgrade to iOS 5 you will lose your jailbreak (there is a tethered jailbreak already available, though). Regardless, with iOS 5, you may not even feel the need to jailbreak, as some traditional jailbreak-only features — like having the camera button on the lock screen and better notifications — are now built-in.
Have you been experiencing iOS 5 download or iPhone 4S activation-related issues? Share your experiences in the comments.
Image: Brian X. Chen/Wired.com
Washington Post reporters or editors recommend this comment or reader post.
The two men responsible for selling an unfinished model of the “iPhone 4″ have avoided jail time, but will now serve two years of probation and 40 hours of community service for their crime.
Brian John Hogan, 22, and Sage Robert Wallower, 28, sold the prototype smartphone model to tech blog Gizmodo. Gray Powell, an employee of Apple, misplaced the smartphone at a Redwood City bar that was later taken by Brian and Sage. Once found, both men sold the device to Gizmodo for a reported sum of $5,000.
Gizmodo then proceeded to post up leaked photos and videos of the next “iPhone,” which happened to be the model they previously purchased. This news reached the Internet before the official unveiling of Apple’s “iPhone 4.”
A few days later, police went out and seized a total of four computers and two servers from Gizmodo’s Jason Chen. The police warrant noted that they were looking for property that was: used as the means of committing a felony; or tends to show that a felony has been committed, or that a particular person has committed a felony.
Gawker Media and Gizmodo then voluntarily agreed to turn over all relevant documents to authorities in exchange for having the warrant voided.
John and Sage recently agreed to a plea deal in court. Both men will each pay Apple $250 in restitution fees, plus a separate, undetermined fine. These fines plus the probation and community service hours are now required of both men.
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Steve Wagstaffe, San Mateo County District Attorney, reportedly requested that the two men should receive five days in jail, but the judge decided against it. No charges have been brought up against Gizmodo, though.
Former Gizmodo editor Brian Lam detailed his feelings on the whole ordeal on his personal blog: “I just wanted to say that I wish things happened differently. I probably should have quit right after the first story was published for several different reasons. I didn’t know how to say that without throwing my team under the bus, so I didn’t. Now I’ve learned it’s better to lose a job I don’t believe in any more than to do it well and keep it just for that sake.”
Reports of another stolen “iPhone” model have surfaced. No further details have emerged on this occurrence, however.