NOTE: The new mobile operating system, iOS5, has arrived and is available as a free download for your iPad. According to Apple, the new the operating system has over 200 new features that will be added to your iPad.
This post shows you some of the more important new features in iOS5. Some of these features are not immediately apparent but add a lot of new functionality to your iPad. In order to upgrade, you need a computer that has the free iTunes app. You need an Apple ID and password. If you are able to download apps from the App Store on your iPad, you have an Apple ID and password. You need to connect your iPad to your computer.
NOTE: If you are a CIA student and you don’t have a family or personal computer and have never synced your iPad to a computer, Mike Kimmel in the IT Dept is currently devising a way to update your iPad.
If you do have a computer and have already used iTunes to sync with your iPad, simply plug your iPad into the computer using the USB cable you were given. On your computer, iTunes will recognize your iPad and tell you there is a new update available. Simply click “download and update”.
This will take a while…
Once the update is complete, your iPad will reboot and ask you a series of (easy) questions to set up your new OS.
It will ask you if you want to back up to iCloud. If you say yes, all the files on your iPad will be backed up to the cloud and you’ll never lose a document. You can also use iCloud to transfer files to your computer wirelessly.
If you use iCloud, it fills up quickly. Here’s a good tutorial that tells you how to choose what will be backed up to iCloud. My 5 GB of free iCloud space was filled almost immediately, and this tutorial helped me free a ton of space. It’s for the iPhone but works exactly the same for the iPad.
Once you choose your settings, your iPad is ready to go with a bunch of new features…
iMessage. Free text messaging via wi-fi.
Built-in Twitter integration:
New Reminders app, “to do” lists with notification alerts.
Newstand App. You can buy subscriptions to magazines and newspapers from inside the app.
New photo editing features inside the Photos App.
You can now create new folders and organize your photos too.
You can create new calendars inside the Calendar App too.
Tabbed web browsing in Safari!
For those of you used to texting by typing with your thumbs, you can now pull the virtual keyboard apart so it becomes two little keyboards on either side of the iPad.
Most importantly, these little changes add up to create an iPad that is completely independent from computers and other devices. Enjoy!