iOS 6 offers a lot of new features. We’ll show you everything you need to know in under three minutes.
Watch the video above for the overview. The quick details are below.
The top feature for many people is Maps, because it now offers turn-by-turn navigation guided by Siri. Annoyingly, this isn’t an option at launch in Australia.
As you’d expect from Apple, the maps are attractive and easy to read. Directions are really large so you can see them easily if you need to quickly glance in the car. The downside is that Maps only offers driving directions; public transit and walking directions no longer exist. You also need an iPhone 4S, 3rd generation iPad, or newer device to use it. Older models use the new app but offer no voice-guided directions. Another cool feature of Maps is Flyover, which lets you explore a map in 3D. It’s pretty cool.
Passbook is a new app that keeps track of all your passes and tickets, such as movie tickets and flights. It can even store digital gift and discount cards. As with any new release, partners are limited (and details on Australian partnerships are thin on the ground right now — this is likely to be a US-first feature).
The phone improvements are less flashy, but also welcome. You can now reply to a call with a text message or immediately set a reminder to call the person back when you’re available next. Those reminders can be based on your location. iOS 6 provides a Do Not Disturb mode, too, so you can set quiet hours when you don’t want to get calls. If you want calls from certain people to go through during these hours, you can set them as emergency contacts and Do Not Disturb will allow them in.
The Mail app has a nice new feature called VIP, which lets you prioritise mails from individual accounts. You can select which contacts are set as VIPs and their emails will appear in a special inbox.
A Smarter Siri
Siri gets smarter in iOS 6. She now knows about sports, can make OpenTable reservations, pull up a movie trailer, and works in a variety of new languages. Additionally, Siri works on the iPad with iOS 6.
Facetime Over Mobile Networks
Want to make FaceTime calls over mobile networks? You can in iOS 6 — but there’s a catch. Apple allows the option, but carriers have the option of charging for the privilege. No word at this stage on whether that will happen in Australia, though we’ve often avoid extra charges that are common in the US (such as tethering).
Photos get a minor upgrade in iOS 6. You can now upload photos to web sites via mobile Safari, and you can share your photo stream with others.
iOS 6 integrates Facebook system-wide. Sign in once on your iDevice, then share whatever you want at will.
Better Privacy Settings
Apple has beefed up its privacy settings, allowing you to see what apps are using what kinds of data at any time. If an app is accessing something you don’t want it to, you can revoke those permissions in Settings.
On the iPhone 5, the camera app now has a sweeping panorama mode. Basically, you just sweep your phone from left to right and it’ll assemble a giant panorama for you.