June 21, 2010

428 words 3 mins read

iOS 4 is out (UPDATE: Horrible noises)

As of about 11AM PST this morning, the new iOS 4 was available for download via iTunes. I plugged in my iPhone 3GS, hit “Check for updates” and gave it a whirl. It took about 20 to 30 minutes to do the entire process. That included backing up (8GB), downloading, updating some apps, installing new OS, backing up again, etc.

The only real differences I’ve noticed off hand are:

  • My lock screen image is now my wallpaper image.
  • The home screen now has “dots” to indicate which screen your on.
  • There are folders
    • The system is fairly intuitive and generally picks a fairly useful name
    • You are limited to 12 applications in one folder, which I dislike. Not even enough to fit all the system applications
    • The small app icons are a little fuzzy, but generally good enough
  • Some of the system icons got slightly revamped
  • The unified mail inbox
  • Faux Multi-Tasking
    • Ok, it does actually “multitask” but extremely limited API is still … unfriendly.
    • I launched Pandora, and clicked “Home” and still had music playing, simple enough.
    • If another app played a sound, it faded out Pandora, played the sound, and faded it back in – fairly normal.
    • Double clicking the home button “raised” any current screen I was on and brought up the task manager
    • Task manager lists the last 4 apps you were on, even if they aren’t multitasking compatible (to the best I can tell).

All in all, it doesn’t feel like a major change from the previous version. Not as big of a change as some of the previous upgrades. It is nice that Apple has finally “figured out” (::cough:: stopped screwing over ::cough::) how to give the updates to the iPod Touch owners without charge. I don’t think there is enough new in the release of iOS to warrant paying $5 (or whatever the last upgrade price was). For as much as this release was hyped, I’m totally underwhelmed.

UPDATE: I went to stop playing music on the iPhone, and generally shut it down (I dont use it much) and it picked up a new trick: “Screeching” – best I can define it.  It is almost like a feedback loop.  I went into the task manager and exited all the applications, but that didn’t fix it.  The only way to stop this was to reboot the phone and hope it doesn’t happen again.  I shot a video of it (With my Nexus One) to demonstrate how it happens and what is sounds like – you may want to turn your volume down.