Noah and I just finished our live coverage of the Apple event in Cupertino (to check it out, click here). In the presentation, Jobs outlined seven new "tentpole" features that will be included in iPhone OS 4:
First of all, the iPhone 3G won't support multitasking. According to Jobs, the hardware just "can't handle it." Beyond that, the 3GS, newer iPod touch units, and the iPad will see the new features. If you're in an application and you want to multitask, you can bring up a dock at the bottom of the screen with the running programs (and switch from there).
Scott Forstall showed off the new capabilities by demonstrating with Pandora, Skype, and TomTom. What's more, task completion will be enabled, so you'll be able to exit out of that picture sharing program while it's uploading. In my opinion, it's the most important feature that was demonstrated today.
Instead of having numerous apps scattered across your iPhone, OS 4 will offer the ability to place them in "Folders." By moving an app on another app, it automatically creates a folder and names it (though the name can be changed). A nice organizational feature, if I do say so myself.
3. Enhanced Mail
One of my common complaints about the iPhone is being addressed in iPhone OS 4. Mail improvements include the ability to configure more than one Exchange account, a unified inbox for all of your addresses, the ability to open an attachment with an app from the App Store, and the ability to view e-mails by thread.
Quite possibly one of my favorite features on the iPad - iBooks - is finally coming to the iPhone. Nothing new here, but it'll be nice to have when I'm traveling.
Better data protection, mobile device management, and most importantly, support for multiple Exchange accounts. Finally.
6. Game Center
If you like to play games on your iPhone, then the Game Center is going to interest you. From what I can gather, it's going to be a social gaming network of sorts, complete with achievements, leaderboards, and more.
Leave it to Apple to make mobile advertising interesting. Claiming that apps are "where the opportunity to deliver advertising is," iAd is intended to help developers create rich, app-like advertisements. In the demo, the advertisement literally looked like an app within an app. Very cool, and I'm sure it will make waves in the advertising industry.
All in all, a good event. What say you? Pleased with the improvements in iPhone OS 4, or were you expecting more today? Sound off in the comments section!
(Images via Engadget)