First iOS 4.2 Beta Released

Apple has released the first beta for iOS 4.2 to developers; the update is to be released in November. The update will bring the iPad all the features of iOS 4 as well as new features such as Printing. The update is also available for iPhone and iPod Touch. Here is a brief video preview from App Advice outlining how the updated features work:

The update comes just a week after iOS 4.1 was released. The update is only available for developers at this stage.

A Guide to the iOS 4.1 Update

Tomorrow Apple is scheduled to release iOS 4.1 for iPhone and iPod Touch. Now would seem to be a good time to look at what features there are to look forward to and what Game Centre and HDR Photographs are.

Game Centre: Game Centre is the first definitive solution to Multiplayer Gaming on iOS devices. Game Centre allows users to Play with friends, online and offline within games. Users will be able to send an invite to a friend (even if they are not playing the game) or can pit their skills against a stranger of similar ability. The service logs usage stats, supports achievements and leader-boards, all depending on the game. In essence, Game Centre will be the XBox Live of the iPhone.

High Dynamic Resolution Photographs (aka nicer photos!): Strip away the jargon and in essence HDR is all about enhancing photographs. The way it works is your iPhone takes three photos in very quick succession, the trick is the exposure level: one under exposed, one normal and one over-exposed. These are then merged together. The idea behind it is that colours and textures that may normally be washed out or over-shadowed are brought out and the result is a much richer and generally better photograph. What will be interesting is whether this feature will be available on the iPhone 3G as not every iOS 4 feature is available on the device.

Comparison between Regular and HDR treated photos

Ping: Apple’s new controversial social network within iTunes will be available on iPhone and iPod Touch. Ping allows users to follow artists, get updates on what they are up to and share music with friends; 4.1 brings these capabilities to the iOS.  Ping has attracted over 1 million users but has come under criticism due to it’s limitations, for example, no Twitter or Facebook connectivity.

High Definition Video Uploads: As the iPhone and soon the iPod Touch can shoot movies in HD, Apple has added the capability to upload these videos to YouTube or MobileMe. This feature will only be available over a WiFi connection due to the bandwidth required.

The update also brings bug fixes for the Proximity Sensor, Bluetooth connectivity and, at last, a fix to the iPhone 3G’s sluggish speed when using iOS 4. The update will be available tomorrow.

iOS 4.1 Release on Wednesday

Apple has let slip that iOS 4.1 for iPhone and iPod Touch will be available from Wednesday.

The Apple UK website briefly showed text saying that the update will be available on Wednesday, 8th September before swiftly replacing it with “Coming soon”

iOS 4.1 brings the greatly anticipated Game Centre which vastly enhances Multiplayer options in games. It also brings the new Ping network as well as TV Show Rentals from iTunes.