Thursday, October 13, 2011

iOS 5 - first touch, pros and cons

I heard the new operating system for Apple iPad was released so I decided to install it. 

I was eager to have tab browsing, split keyboard and iCloud backup.

iOS 5 - Installation & iCloud
The download was smooth, quick installation. A quick "setup guide" took me through the new features but when reaching the cloud backup options, an error message popped out: iCloud Backup Failed: There was a problem enabling iCloud Backup. You can skip this step by selecting the iTunes backup instead. Later, the iCloud sync can be enabled from Settings > iCloud (didn't work for me... the same error).

iOS 5 - Tabbed browsing
As promised, Apple integrated tabs in Safari for iPad. They look nice, but there's a catch - a maximum of 9 tabs can be opened. That's not that bad, I think they're trying to keep the memory usage to a reasonable quota. If you launch a YouTube video in one tab, it will be paused when you switch to another one. Also, private browsing is still unavailable in Safari (you need to enable it from the global Settings) - pretty annoying when you've got friends that want to check their Facebook on your iPad.

iOS5 - Split keyboard
The split keyboard is really a cool improvement if you ask me, at least as a concept. I always hold the iPad in landscape mode with both hands so there was a little problem when typing, especially with the letters in the middle of the keyboard and the ones on the edge of the keyboard. 
I've used the split keyboard for just a few minutes, the keys seem to be a little too small.When typing a letter, I was expecting an iPhone - like behavior (blue overlay letter - to show you what you pressed on) - that is not the case, the keys are behaving  exactly like the ones on the initial iPad keyboard. The split keyboard can be moved on the vertical screen axis for better access.

iOS5 - iPad 1 & gestures
After installing iOS5 my iPad 1 (first generation) wouldn't respond to gestures any more. Believing it's a bug in the settings migration I wanted to enable the gestures in the General Settings and  

SURPRISE: Apple disabled gestures for iPad first generation. Why did they do that? 

I was so pleased with the four finger swipe gesture to switch apps and the four finger pinch gesture to close apps. I don't want to jailbreak the device, but if Apple doesn't change this, I will be forced to do something.

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