So the wait is finally over. For anyone that has been anticipating their first glimpse of Apple’s newest version to iOS, the mobile platform that exists on the iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch, yesterday was a big day. Apple took time out of their busy schedule to showcase iOS 5 (and plenty of other new products, of course), and bring to the table the next generation of iDevices and their mobile software. But even with all of the rumors and speculation swirling about, I don’t think anyone could have guessed that the announcements made by Apple would be so shockingly similar to what we’re already seeing in the mobile market.

Actually, that last sentence can be altered a bit. Yes, the similarities between iOS 5 and what we’re already seeing in the mobile market are apparent, but they don’t stop there. We are also seeing Apple bring new innovations to iOS 5 that other companies have announced for their mobile platforms as well. The argument here is a simple one: these new features are common sense, and are simply integrating more social feeds and networks into the mobile ecosystem. But the similarities are still present, and these aren’t going to go unnoticed.

The most apparent, and the one that some folks will probably be most upset about, is Apple’s “new” drop-down notification “shade.” This doesn’t just look similar to Android’s own version; we can safely say that it is the same thing. This can be said pretty confidently because it’s a drop-down shade where you can find all your notifications. Sure, Apple’s put widgets in that same drop-down shade, but having accessible options isn’t missing in Android’s version. And with notifications now present on the lock screen in iOS 5, with the ability to jump right into the corresponding application with a touch of a finger, even Samsung’s proprietary TouchWiz user interface is being thrown into the mix. (Coincidence?)

There’s no arguing that Apple’s iPhone OS had to change its notification system. Many people were happy with it with the launch of the original iPhone, but by 2009 people were calling it archaic. So it’s no surprise to see Apple getting around to changing it. Unfortunately, the similarities don’t stop here. With the new notification system, new messages, or other notifications, appear at the top of your iDevice’s display. You can even dismiss them if you so choose. The problem here is that this is exactly how Microsoft’s Windows Phone implements their “toaster” notifications. You can even dismiss the notifications in a similar way.

And then there’s iMessage, which we’ve already talked about. And while some may say that making a BlackBerry Messenger contender is a good thing, as it builds competition and innovation, it would be hard to believe that Apple didn’t just create iMessage to take BBM out of the equation altogether. But, making an already existing feature, but making it better is a tactic that Apple knows, and does very well. But finally (for this article), there’s also the new features for the camera in iOS 5. There’s still no hardware button for taking a snapshot on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch, but now you can use the volume ‘up’ key to take a photo, so it’s essentially the same thing. Furthermore, there’s a camera option right on the lock screen which will load up the camera from the lock screen. The similarities here aren’t hard to miss. Windows Phone has a dedicated camera key that will wake up the phone from sleep and activate the camera, or from the lock screen if you choose.

In today’s market, getting away from similarities between one platform and another is pretty difficult. However, I think this is the same situation between Research In Motion and HP, after the BlackBerry PlayBook officially launched. HP wasn’t quiet about pointing out the similarities between the PlayBook’s QNX Software mobile OS and HP’s webOS, and I wasn’t surprised to see Joe Belfiore of Microsoft projecting via Twitter that he was “flattered” by Apple’s iOS 5 announcements.

So it begs the question: did Apple really do any innovating this time around with the release of iOS 5? Of the 200 new features in iOS 5, are the main features worthy of saying that Apple actually innovated and created new elements for iOS 5? Or did they just take the best features of other mobile platforms and slide them into their own mobile platform? Let me know what you think in the comments below.

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103 Reactions to this post

"Did Apple do any real innovating with iOS 5?"

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Zachery White iOS 5 looks alot like android 1.5-1.6.....good one apple way to be 3 years behind us. First iOS looked like my app drawer now it looks like an outdated android version, nice one steve
Dalveer Josan Who cares All the companies are in it for the money they don't care about what anyone thinks.....
Dae Hwan Kim Lolololol........ No....
Earl Andy Brim No please let the patent suits commence
Erick Contreras to everyone who is making this into an android vs ios thing, android is great for people that want cheaper, feature full, customizable, great call vs call drop ratios phones, and to choose more networks than just verizon and at&t. Ios is great for people that want a simple, stable, large a app filled appstore phone. Neither is without it's cons, like iphones tend to drop a lot of calls, and android does not have as many high quality apps, not one of these OS' can be called better, everyone has different preferences and no one should talk bad about other people's choices and opinions.
TY DA TI Fake artists steal - Steve Jobsless
Alex Arana @ Frank Pagel grow up shit feel bad for ur kid having a immature idiot father who da fuck cares about what u think of android go spend time with ur kid dumb shit
Angel Miguel Peguero Ios5 is coming on fall and doesn't even touch android 2.2 and by that time icecream android 2.4 would be out so apple is just catching up android has more and more features then just a notification bar
Marti Ruiz For ios 5
Marti Ruiz They copy android notification bar
Arnulfo Barajas I think people just don't STFU about their androids these days!...
Arnulfo Barajas Dammm deres really dumbasss people in this page!!!!IOS5 Seems to have Android beat right now....and y do people say apple copied android....apple came first and adroid came second..once iphone came out .android just copied iphones features and made it better....I want a iphone now.....who wants my android?!
Ahmed Jamal Ibraihimi And plzzzzzzz can sum bdy tell me whr I can find full list of all 200 features which Apple is bringing in ios5......????
Nick Kalman If I would have a choice between ios5 or Android I would take IOS cause its more stable then Android. Personaly I prefer wp7. And we have 500 new future coming not just 200 :-)
Jose Hernandez I like the iphone but apple hasn't done anything innovative with there iphone. Android is much more superior to iphone by far. Everything the ios5 has to offer has been done already. Apple still has the best touch screen experience but that's all.
Geo Amspaugh I love apple but android can be customized to your liking! That's what makes me love android... The only thing I like about apple is there music layout on the iPod!
Gabriel Freeman Wow. I'm going to refrain from correcting a lot of misinformation in these comments, but to answer the question, no. Apple did not innovate much. If I were an IOS user, then I would truly welcome all of the new additions, and certainly competition is a good thing for us consumers. What bothers me, and what I think the root of what bothers many people is that these obviously copied features are coming from a company that has been known to cry foul so much when they believe that another platform is copying a feature of its own products. My personal beef is not with Apple at the moment, though. It may be with the carriers or the industry in general. All of these devices with data intensive services are offered to the public for enticement, but are then crippled by carrier data tiers and throttling. You may get to use these cloud services for about a week before going through your plan's allotment.
Kyle Adams @Ben Rees I agree. I like both OS' but you have to admit when Android first came into the market it was like copying iOS features was a hobby. Now I just see it as healthy competition. But when you android fans cry like this it really makes me point out things like in my above post. We need to all get over stuff. Do you enjoy your notification system? Good, why hate someone else for wanting to have it because it is the best. Isnt that a compliment? Copying features that work is part of business. Making features work amazing is a brand to brand thing. I happen to think Apple implements things very very well and with care. You think the same of Android and thats ok. You dont see me telling you to go eat man parts.
Myles J. Patterson on the large scale , looking at themselves and their competitors , no they haven't innovated anything . when talking about apple products only , sure they've innovated some things because apple products never had them and needed them badly .
Kyle Adams iPhone was the first full touchscreen phone and the first to do a slide to unlock screen. Also the first to do an app store and music store. Oh, and not to mention the first to have a single home button setup. Yeah some iOS 5 stuff is modeled from other things that work, but who copied who first? Idiots. Plus the iCloud and these "copied" features will run 500x better. Example: over the air updates. Android sucks at those already.
Mohit Gadre REVOLUTIONARY! lol. Android still numba 1!
Alex Castillo Android copycat OS5
Israel Leiva I wonder if Steve Job's new pacemaker will be powered by Android.
Kevin Pizana Why do these things very off topic...first a every phone has a basic shape...rectangle with four pointed sides...sorry if all phones look like the iphone...but if youve ever seen a phone before...well maybe your just stupid...everything from yesterday of Total ripoff of someone elses work...from the way this new version of ios handles notifications to bbm..i mean Imessage...no one cares that anyone with a iq higher than a rock can use an iphone...cause trading these comments prices that way beyond sales...
Ben Rees What pisses me off then anything is Apple fanboys screaming copy as soon as anything Android do relates to iOS yet as soon as they rip off Android its "who cares about copying" seriously Apple go eat a dick.
Dave Keller "iOS 5 looks cool! But I liked it better when it was called android 1.6.."
Steven Burress I don't think so but with the innovation of android features and blackberry incorporated into the iphone it surely will have no problem to back on top. Now we'll see the true android fans compare to the floaters.
AnJel Lopez Created+
AnJel Lopez They totally rip off android and blackberry Feature by feauture my Nexus S kills the iphone and its not sven one of the latest android phones apple will gain my attetion ounce it can play flash I love streaming highlights, live games, etc with iphones there's always a white square yeah its easy to use thays why its popular but android is like a mobile pc(not all androids are creates equal)
Ryan Rees-Williams Yes if you dont count the fact that ALL the new features are allready on other mobile operating systems...
Josh Pieters Garbage. Droids are better.
Dave Normann I find it funny that the people here say Apple Copies everything when ANDROID and WINDOW's phone are COPIES of iPhone! Pretty much anything awesome with technology came from Apple.
Frank Pagel @ josh you have no right to talk about anything, you are probably using a phone on metro pcs oh wait you using android my fault! I have had alot of android phone- droid, droid incredible, htc evo 4g, droid x, samsung epic 4g! All great phones but way to unstable for me and battery life is brutal! If you use your phone as much as I do, those just don't work! As far as you talking shit about me you better take a look in the mirror and start working out instead of filling your face with crispy creme donuts and posting things on here! Dumbass
Anh-Tuan Le Yeah seriously. AAPL is going to come out with iDynamicHomescreenTiles next, and blow everybody away with their creativity! Boom! Game over, bitches! AAPL win! Face it, dawg.
Jerry Perales You say copy, i say perfected.
Benjamin Silva Iphones don't outsell android phones any more and android is the most favorable and more customizable os. I agree apple is here to stay but it will not be the dominate phone on the market due to the variety of choices that the android platform brings
Charles Datdude Knight It's copy this and city dat. STFU, who's getting paid here. The more ppl jailbreak a iPhone the more apple gets paid. U have to buy an iPhone in order to get it jailbroken. So who is da joke on. iPhones are like the Dallas cowboys, no matter what phone your talking bout iPhone has always be in the conversation too.
Rio Iz Awsoome There is a reason why ya have widgets because no devs wanna make apps in thy platform apple is where the money is at
Ryan DeClue No. They stole other ideas
Rio Iz Awsoome 200 million iso devices sold how many does google have?
Erick Contreras No, ios 5 is evolutionary, not revolutionary
Dave Gammage Just because Apple is finally integrating features into iOS that others have had for years (like deltized OTA updates) doesn't mean they are getting sued. Oh, and Apple didn't steal DOS. Go educate yourself before you attempt to spread misinformation.
Rio Iz Awsoome Android is a good platform i give ya that but stop hating on us...just because we do thing better ya wanna hate when iPad came out there goes google monkey see monkey do the galaxy s phone looks like iPhone with one phone a year we out sell all of google phones and google so thirsty that they put shit as phones on cricket and boost which are garbage that cost a good amount of money You will never and i repeat NEVER see apple put a crappy product on the market...fuk google your os is not good all ya have is phones that die fast apple is here to stay
David Harness Kind of. They innovated iOS, but not the industry.
Josh Lazenby Seems like they have made some steps in improving many of the issues people had with iOS. I wouldn't say they really did anything innovative, but they have improved things. Despite not being an apple fan, and being a Android user, I wouldn't say it's really copying the notification system. Apple's system was terrible before, and the notification drop down menu is one of the most logical ways of doing it. Though, maybe this will make Apple think twice before sueing someone else for something laughable which they have been doing a lot of lately. @Frank Pagel... your incredible ignorance and childishness astound me more then any other comment here. At first I thought you were just a blatant troll... though, now I just think you really are that much of am idiot. May God have pity on your near retard level soul.
JUanitoo Martinez Face it bitches ios 5 and iphone is the shiet u could all go suck a dick or die trying hahah
Wilhelm Haas ...with that copy mayhem they unleashed it is sure for me: I will NEVER change back to Apples iPhone again because now they proofed to me definitely that their best and most innovative times are over (started with "Facetime")... If I would be Google I would sue the hell out of them... :)
Wei Yan Its not innovative but more or less refining what is already available in the market. So more or less playing catch up?
Henry Murillo Ripping off everyone else
Michael Aguilar if innovation means copy, yes.
Mimoun Tu Rigoleras all this great idea and it's not a innovating but a revolution !!!! But wait .... but I've seen ... oh yes of course Android !!!
Don FlaKo Goldstein Just for shits and giggles apple has been copying others since day one. Its the apple way. The history of the macintosh and apple OS based unix which of open sourced and then they close the source. Hmmm even microsoft ain't based of unix its based on Dos oh wait apple stole that too
John Saunders iOS 5 already jailbroken!!! Http://freenewiphone.co.uk/ios5-jailbreak
Dale Charles did Ford sue Chevy for using a steering wheel?
Phil Esposito Yeah, apple did not rob any ideas, android doesn't mind sharing.... just we all know apple will find some way to Sue Google over it :)
Kent Masias Not at all. Polished ios is but its soo damn archaic
Don FlaKo Goldstein Hmmm apple notorious for suing everyone copied the notifications from android and the draggable icons on the lock screen from htc which is closed source. I hope htc sues them for infringement. Fuck you so apple and steve jobs, I hope you fucking choke on an apple douche bag.
Anh-Tuan Le Of course. Apple always innovate. The other guys just preemptively copied Apple.
Allen Pudge Sells For all u apple lovin android hating people,when iphone first come out it was the benchmark. Apple is now like rim they are trying hard to play the catch up game! So apple has to rob original ideas to make them look like they haven't fell off their podium!!!!!!
Matt Cain I know people will say they're just copying Android with the notifications, but name someone who hasn't taken something that worked really well and put their own spin on it. If you do something right, people are going to notice and see what they can do with it. i'm looking forward to iOS 5.
Huey Liggins No same sht. But don't use the word copy. Use the word catch up. When android was behind apple no one said that android is copying. Android is slightly ahead of apple and apple has to catch up. But that doesn't mean apple sucks. Trust me...looking at Thier line up, having apple products is a definite plus
Johnny Lucas Kalliantasis Innovation! Sorry not this time around!
Zakari Ghachi Android wannabe
Yossarian Norman No. They have not done anything innovative with iOS 5 or iCloud. They took everyone else's idea and did it there way. In a way that is copying but in a way it isn't. They didn't do some of the things I would have liked to see like a easier way to change settings. Notification Center is nice, but not different from the one on Android. The lockscreen access and the animations are nice though. And iMessages is there attempt to kill off BlackBerry by copying BBM. The service I am the most disappointed with is iCloud. The fact that there is no way to permanently save pictures in the cloud is a bummer. 5GB of free storage is nice but what happens pass 5GB. And the iTunes Match seems like a ripoff. I mean you pay then $25 a year to rent music you already paid for just because you didn't buy it from them?
Joshua Castro No they know how to copy i hope they get sued
Johnny Lucas Kalliantasis No, More and more like android...
Kostas Pagratis Of course! In the next couple weeks they're going to release the iButton. The greatest camera button ever, available in black at launch, then white 4 years later. Utilizing the lasted in hardware camera button software....
Charles Datdude Knight I am a apple user. An imma say no. But they did implement a lot of stuff. Who can really say apple copied anything. Yes android users gonna say they copied from android. But hell a lot stuff you use is copied! Such as that kia you drive that look like a mercedes! But tell me what phone makes ppl stand 10 hrs in line for. What tablet made sum dude pay someone to take his spot. What keep y'all talking. What phone is compared to all. So basically y'all are promoters for apples iPhone. Out 10 ppl I bet half of have a iPhone. The otha half is gonna be the many variations of the android. Apple might didn't put in there IOS the first time around. But I bet it'll be betta anytime around than android.
Joe Hernandez Does apple ever really do any innovating?
Jake Mexin Dear God who cares if stuff looks like other OS's, people complain about the notification system in place now and now that its gonna change people are complaining it looks like android or copying android in a way. That's like saying google copied apple by releasing a touch screen phone, sorry all you android fan boys but no one really cares about your complaining anymore cause it never ends, every day it's just a bunch of "my phone does this" and "android FTW". What are we 15, come on give me a break.
Abhishek Varrey Naah! It sux as usual. Android FTW. Look at the irony, im typing this from my iPhone.
Jen Gonzalez Some of you take this so serious like if they were talking about your mother. Somehow or another android, iOS, webOS, etc they all got ideas from one another.
Branden McNeill they did some serioius innovation
Rommel Balahadia ...just another way to earn money from us :)
NemOry Oliver Martinez @jake, android was first.
Bradley Jamenya Year of copycats and they area the masters. I think they have run out of ideas
Michael Spotts I'm glad that apple is around. The more competition the better. When companies have to improve or die we the consumer win.
Levi Warfel Pretty sure Apple only copied the way you get to the notification system, not exactly how they're shown. I'm in live with my iPhone and I can't wait fr the new lock screen notifications!
Adam Khana Charsi Apple bashers... i used to have an i4 but then I saw android. First thing i did was sell it and buy a sgs. Since then I've had my mind blown and will soon be developing for Android.
Jesus Castillo No they just copied everybody & call it innovation Lolz
Christopher Wesley I really didn't see anything special. It's still a good product but all they hype was for nothing. I was expecting something a little more but they didn't deliver much imo.
JMichael Rodriguez From an current iphone user...... No no really. I exprected somehing totaly new. but its just the same as all other platforms.
Frank Pagel I hate all these android fans I have had many android phones and they are just not as reliable as an iPhone, also if you like music iTunes is great! Many docs for music...can android do that? NOPE iOS has and always will be choice unless your a 10 year old! Lol grow up and step up for that shitty ass platform called android UNSTABLE OS! Lmfao
Brett Bristow Yes, but to bad it was not released this week.
Kevin Davis Not really but it's a improvement, then I kinda feel like I'm going to be using my old HTC EVO and BlackBerry IM LOL
Kamal Halder Apple will Now Kill Android with IOS 5 has got every thing except the Keyboard feature, which android has better than IOS, The Status Bar whether WIDGET is Simply Awesome. every thing else the lock screen with Notifications and host of added features which is more polished than Android.
Breathless Tao They haven't done anything innovative since the first iphone, they're just copying features they said are unnecessary, irrelevant, useless - or a combo of these.
Marcus Bröker It's Apple, then don't innovate anything. They wait for competition then try to copy them. If they fail, then they sue the competition for "patent infringement".
Tim Gruber no they're just copying
Wyatt Likes Kittens this is basicly identicle to having LockInfo and CameraButtons.
Robert Centennial Good updates but nothing great.
NemOry Oliver Martinez @dave n0rman. . If I have an ios device I would be happy too..but its n0t right to c0py. .they're bullshits!
Hatim A Paghadiwala I don't think so ...just another way to earn money from us

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