Apple Releases iOS 5 Beta To Developers; Reveals Hidden Features [Updated]

iOS 5

Apple has just released the first beta version of iOS 5 (build 9A5220p)to developers of iOS Developer program.

iOS 5 beta is available for iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, iPod Touch 4th generation, iPod Touch 3rd generation, iPad and iPad 2.

Apple unveiled iOS 5 at today’s WWDC 2011 Keynote, which includes more than 200 features for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch users such as Notification Center, iMessage, Newsstand, Reminders and Twitter integration. Apple has also improved the Camera app, Photo app, mobile Safari browser, Mail and Calendar app in iOS 5. With iOS 5, users also won’t need a computer.

BGR has provided some early observations based on their hands on with iOS 5:

  • Preference to open pages in Safari in a new page or in background (amazing!).
  • More alert choices for emails, calendar, and the ability to buy more.
  • Ability to create keyboard shortcuts (autotext) to replace custom phrases. The default entry is “omw” which is replaced with, “On my way!”
  • Software update option in settings to check for the latest OS.
  • Sync now button to wireless sync to iTunes
  • Ability to customize how notifications in Notification Center look — you can customize how many recent ones to show, 1, 5 or 10, if it’s showed in the lock screen, if it’s in Notification Center, and also the alert style, banner or alert style.
  • Twitter installs directly from the settings page if it’s not installed directly, you aren’t even taken to the App Store.
  • FaceTime button in iMessage messages at the top now
  • Tweeting photos is, so so slick. It displays on Twitter as powered by Photobucket, and it’s from iOS.
  • There’s a new option to print out from the Maps app… hilarious.
  • You can make new albums right from the device itself in Photos.
  • You can move and add photos to albums.
  • Doesn’t look iMessage is fully baked in here yet.
  • You can customize the default alert times. This is so needed — so now when you enter a calendar entry, you don’t have to set the default alert time you like — I’m a 15 minute calendar alert type of guy.
  • You have to go into the message and tap “mark” for Email flagging.
  • It seems that Reminders sync with Exchange (Tasks basically), but you can’t set location-based reminders if you’re on Exchange, just with iCloud. You can selectively choose where to sync the reminder though, it’s just not streamlined if you use Exchange.
  • You can set the caller ID for FaceTime calls, so if you call someone, you can choose it to display your cellular number or email address.
  • In the weather app, there is a new pane for a current location which will show you weather for wherever you are.

Here’re some screenshots courtesy BGR:


Update:

Reader FeedGoodChicken (thanks!) has provided some more details:

  • The iPod app on iPhone is split up into music and video like on iPod touch.
  • There are a few new accessibility options, some audio controls, such as fading left or right, and something about gestures in menus I’m not quite clear what it does yet.
  • You can actually see the amount of local storage taken up by specific apps, organized by size.
  • Also it may be worth mentioning that the Newsstand cannot be placed in a folder.

Please note that iOS 5 beta is meant only for developers as devices updated to iOS 5 beta can not be restored to earlier versions of iOS. You will be able to upgrade to future beta releases and the final iOS 5 software when it is release in fall.

We will let you know if the beta version of iOS 5 reveals any other interesting new features, so stay tuned here at iPhone Hacks or join our Facebook Fan pageor follow us on Twitter or subscribe to our RSS feed.