Just because there's a new iPhone on the way doesn't mean you have to run out an buy it. In fact, you could make your iPhone 3GS – 4S new again with one simple click, just download the latest iOS update from Apple. Dubbed iOS 6, the latest set of improvements adds over 200 new features including system wide Facebook integration, Panoramic photos, a new Maps app, upgraded Siri, Passbook and more. Head past the break and check out some of favorite features in this free update.
Yes, there has pretty much always been a Facebook app on your iPhone, but let's face it -- it sucks. iOS 6 brings Facebook into your iPhone much like the previous update added Twitter. Never again will you have to open that lousy app to share a photo or post your status. To update your friends on which party you're attending tonight all you'll have to do is swipe down the Notification center and type in your thoughts. Did you just take a photo that you're sure will have massive amounts of comments hitting your page? Just open the fancy new sharing menu and post it. It's that simple and I think you'll agree when I say this feature is long overdue.
We love Siri, probably because she is just so easy to talk to, and she's getting a pretty nice upgrade with iOS 6. Now she'll be able to fetch movie times, restaurant reviews, sports scores and even help you book dinner reservations for a night on the town. You'll probably still have to talk to her like she's a mile away, barely understanding the words coming from your mouth, but hey, it's an upgrade.
Sure, there are countless apps available that will let you stick photos together to create an awesome panorama photo (that I’m sure we'll be seeing as your Facebook cover photo), but a lot of them cost money and force you to actually snap multiple photos. As Apple is always able to do, they've streamlined the process for us a bit. Their version of Panorama simply has you move your iPhone across the horizon and you're done. Much like the Facebook integration, this is a feature I feel we've waited too long for.
I feel like we got along just fine with Google Maps, but competition between them and Apple has the two companies parting ways in the driving directions department. Thankfully, Apple has its own Maps app now, bringing with it turn-by-turn navigation. There's also a pretty sweet 3D view that looks like it's going to be a lot of fun to mess with, regardless of how useless the feature really is.
New iTunes and App Stores
This one really doesn't bring any new features to the iPhone, but it sure does make things prettier! Folks have always complained about the iPhone's AppStore and iTunes store being a tough to navigate and generally unattractive, but Apple is trying to change all that. The update brings nice, big, eye-friendly graphics along with horizontal scrolling through categories in hopes of making the experience a little less painful. However small or large this update is, we're looking forward to a change.
Do Not Disturb
You're friends (and apps) don't care what time it is. If something is going on, they will bother you. Thankfully iOS 6 is bringing a load of privacy/leave me alone features to our iPhones today. Not only will we have access to a list of all the apps that will potentially scream notifications in the middle of the night, the new do not disturb settings will let us silence calls and messages (unless they are of the utmost importance) without lifting a finger.
See? Look at all the great stuff you can get for the low price of zero dollars! Who cares if you're still rocking an iPhone 4S or earlier model? Your iPhone has all the same software features as the iPhone 5 thanks to this awesome update that you can snag right now. You won’t have the new 4” screen or the faster processor, but when have you ever complained about slow your iPhone is? Besides, you already know there's going to be another “new” iPhone next year.
Also, keep in mind that this update is available for your iPad and iPod Touch as well. While you may not get all the same features (your iPad isn't a phone) most of them will be there for you on any iOS device you have.