As per Apple’s standard practice of releasing an iOS update a few days prior to the latest and greatest device being available, iOS 6 was released today (September 19th). I decided to upgrade my 3rd generation iPad to iOS 6 this evening. Generally, I wait a few days to avoid the initial download crush on the servers but I felt adventuresome.
First, I updated my apps on my iPad. Out of 261 apps on both my iPad and iPhone 4, 55 of them had pending updates. Pretty typical for an iOS upgrade.
Next, I backed up my iPad. Just to be sure, I backed it up to both iCloud and my MacBook Pro. Better safe than sorry.
Then, in the Settings application on my iPad, I opened ‘General’, then ‘Software Update’. I was informed that there was an upgrade available. I tapped on ‘Download and Install’ and wondered how long this might take.
I started the download at 6:49 PM and it finished at 7:13 PM, at which point the status changed to ‘Preparing Update’. That finished at 7:31 PM, for a total of 42 minutes. All in all, actually much quicker than I had anticipated.
Sometimes these devices are just too darn smart. Instead of just starting to install the upgrade, I got the following message:
Since my battery was at 31%, I plugged in my iPad and we were off to the races (or, at least, the installation.) In another eighteen minutes, iOS 6 was installed on my iPad. Another three minutes to reboot and I was good to go. Start to finish was 63 minutes. Not too painful at all for a major upgrade. Had I had the patience to wait a week or so, I probably would have cut that by at least a third, though.
Now that I am good to go (at least on my iPad), I am looking forward to exploring iOS 6. I think that some of its more interesting features are:
There is a new Maps app based on Apple-designed vector-based maps. Spoken directions with turn-by-turn navigation is available for the iPhone 4S and iPhone 5 and 2nd- and 3rd-generation iPads with wifi + cellular. Flyover 3D maps of major metropolitan areas are available on the iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, 3rd-generation iPad as well the 5th-generation iPod Touch. Add some local Yelp integration and SIri integration and it’s a pretty cool app.
Siri has been improved for the iPhone 4S and iPhone 5 and is now available on the 3rd-generation iPad and 5th-generation iPod Touch. Siri now has sports, movie and restaurant information as well as Facebook and Twitter integration. I’m glad that it is available on my iPad. I’ve had Siri-envy ever since the iPhone 4S came out.
Facebook has been integrated into iOS 6, allowing you to sign on from Settings and post from most of the standard Apple apps — Game Center, iTunes, Notification Center, Photos, Safari and Siri. This is similar to the Twitter integration in iOS 5.
Something that I think will become a favorite on my iPhone 4 is the Do Not Disturb feature that suppresses incoming calls and notifications. You can set up a standard reply for declined calls and be reminded later about any declined calls. Sounds pretty nice.
You can now designate VIPs for mail. That should be a big help in sifting through the never-ending stream of emails that I receive.
Find out more about iOS 6 features at Apple’s website.
With over 200 new features in iOS 6, I’m anxious to do some exploring and see what I like and don’t like. I always look forward to a major iOS update.
UPDATE: My husband and I both have the iPhone 4. I updated them as well. Uneventful but it did take about an hour and a half for each.