Apple IOS 4 Is A Worthy Upgrade: Review

The new iOS4 is not just for Apple’s iPhone 4. The new features get much more out of iPhone 3GS and iPod Touch hardware

The automatic spell-checking in iOS 4 will come in handy for many users, and if you’re like me, you’ll benefit from the added support for Bluetooth keyboards on the iPhone 3GS and third-generation iPod Touch. These models also allow users to lock the device orientation in portrait, and to customise the wallpaper on home screens and the lock screen with images of one’s choice.

Security has received attention in this release as well; it’s now possible to encrypt all the data on the device, although if you’re anything like me, running the complete erase-and-restore cycle that’s required to do so may be nerve-wracking. Location services in this release can now be turned on or off for individual applications, and users can see a list of apps that have requested one’s location in the last 24-hour period.

Some features missing, but an upgrade worth having

But between them, iOS 4 and iTunes still lack features that I’ve taken for granted on other devices, such as the ability to maintain multiple backups of a device and Bluetooth access to files on the device. These are things I’ve been able to do on my now-ancient Sony Ericsson p910 from the first time I used it in 2005.

That observation aside, iOS 4 is shaping up as an upgrade worth having, and I plan to spend as much time as I can in the weeks to come examining how well it works in an enterprise setting. Apple doesn’t appear to be updating its iPhone Configuration Utility for this release, but since third-party tools can now use the operating system’s Mobile Device Management service, there will be companies looking for an opportunity to establish themselves as maker of the tool of choice for iPhone management. To what degree Apple will let them do that is another story altogether.