iPhone OS 4.0: Multitasking, unified Mail and more

Posted on by Mike Evans

Author: Michael Evans

Apple's iPhone OS 4.0 event got underway at 10 am Pacific Time, presented by no less than Steve Jobs. Here's a quick review of the presentation of the new operating system courtesy of Engadget's live feed.

First a bit of background:

iPad sales

  • Sold 450,000 iPads to today

  • 600,000 iBooks downloaded so far

  • 3.5 million iPad apps downloaded

  • 3,500 iPad apps in App Store

iPhone progress

  • 50 million iPhones sold

  • 85 million iPhone+iPod touch combined

Now to the meat:

iPhone OS 4.0 shipping this Autumn, developer preview today

New framework called Accelerate for hardware accelerated math functions

100 new user features including

    • Spell check

    • Gift apps

    • Create playlists

    • 5x digital zoom

    • Places in photos

    • Home screen wallpaper 

Bluetooth keyboard connection

Multitasking - "going to be the best" without taking a battery hit

    • Home button accesses dock-like list of running apps 

    • Background audio and VOIP - stay connected to Skype while accessing other applications

    • Background location - TomTom in background while using other apps

    • Location apps - status indicator to show something asking for your location

    • Push notifications, local notifications

    • Task completion (such as uploading data) in background

    • Fast app switching - saving state of apps for later instant restart 


    • Move apps into folders, multi-app folders appear in dock 

    • Unlimited folders, can now see 2,000 apps on phone instead of 180

Unified Mailbox

    • Multiple Exchange accounts

    • Fast inbox switching

    • Threaded messages

    • Open attachments with apps


    • Similar to iBooks on iPad

    • Wireless sync between platforms, sync pages and bookmarks

Features for Enterprise

    • Better data protection

    • Mobile device management

    • Wireless app distribution

    • Exchange Server 2010, multiple accounts

    • SSL VPN support 

Game Centre

    • 50,000 game titles in App Store (Nintendo DS = 4,300)

    • Social gaming network

    • Friend invitations

    • Matchmaking

    • Leaderboards

    • Achievements

iAd interactive advertisements

    • Mobile advertising, better than ads in apps

    • Clicking on ad keeps you within application

    • More emotion and interactivity in ads

    • Built into iPhone OS

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