TechCrunch has reason to believe that the WWDC will indeed see a new revamped notifications system in its upcoming iOS 5 expected to debut next month on June 6th - 10th, 2011. It'll however not see any new hardware release inspite of the recent flurry of rumors about a new iPhone 4S/5. The WWDC will also unveil widget support to the latest iOS, something that is never seen before on an iDevice.
1. iOS 5 Notifications System
A major drawback in the current iOS is definitely the push notifications which hasn't changed much since its addition in iPhone OS 3.0. Even the notifications on Android performs far better than its iOS counterpart. But Apple had already started taking steps to improve the iOS notifications as early as last year. Apple had performed some talent acquisitions; by buying an App Store app developer and also by hiring the engineer who developed an elegant webOS notifications system with a view to improve the iOS notifications. This does seem to indicate that Apple had already started a rework on the notifications part for quite sometime now and therefore promises a major face-lift for the upcoming iOS.
The inclusion of widgets into the iOS will be a huge improvement. Though its unclear as of now on how Apple plans to achieve this, but a real reworking of the app-dominated iOS interface is sure expected. MacRumors assumes that iOS widgets could "presumably provide quick access to information without the need for launching dedicated apps, much the same as Dashboard widgets in Mac OS X". An expose-like multitasking appearance is another added expectation.
2. No New Hardware Announcement This Year
TechCrunch believes that the recent persuasion by Apple's PR team to bring aboard the international journalists is solely because the iOS 5 is going to be a huge announcement and its nothing related to a new hardware release.
Apple is pushing for journalists to come to WWDC because the software announcements will be huge (and they likely know that journalists hearing there will be no iPhone 5 announcement may choose to stay home instead this year). And the changes will be vital for all developers in the Apple ecosystem(s) to know about.
For those who weren't aware, ElectricPig had recently tipped the blogs about how Apple's Public Relations team is persuading top international journalists into attending the WWDC, 2011 held from June 6th - 10th. This caused false speculations of a new hardware release because traditionally, invites to the conference - which runs across a span of 5 days - are restricted to the American journalists, unless a major announcement is scheduled. The Public Relations team assigned to the iPhone department were requesting top selected journalists to fly to San Francisco to attend the conference. TechCrunch completely disapproves of a new hardware release this year adding to the point that Apple had clearly marketed this year's WWDC as a software-only event.
3. iCloud Service
A BusinessWeek article reports in that the WWDC will see the unveiling of a new music streaming service by Apple. This service dubbed iCloud will now let you to mirror your entire iTunes library onto the cloud and if required, will also enhance the quality of your music content as well.
Armed with licenses from the music labels and publishers, Apple will be able to scan customers’ digital music libraries in iTunes and quickly mirror their collections on its own servers, say three people briefed on the talks. If the sound quality of a particular song on a user’s hard drive isn’t good enough, Apple will be able to replace it with a higher-quality version. Users of the service will then be able to stream, whenever they want, their songs and albums directly to PCs, iPhones, iPads, and perhaps one day even cars.
Since nothing comes for free from Apple, the iCloud service add-on service will require a subscription fee, though its unclear right now as exactly how much will the costs be until its officially announced.
4. iOS 5 Maps Will Still Be Using Google's Map Data:
Recent acquisition of map based companies such as Poly9 and Placebasehad by Apple had lead to speculations that the new iOS will be using its own map data and dropping Google's map data services. But according to 9to5Google sources, it seems Apple will still be using Google maps data.
Sources have told 9to5Google that although Apple is working to improve the iOS Maps application, iOS 5 will not bring an Apple developed maps service and Google Maps is still in. Besides Apple’s purchase of both Placebase and Poly9, some speculated that Apple is building their own maps service to either compete with Google or step away from their input into iOS.
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