Apple previewed iOS 6, the next version of its operating system for the iPhone and iPad, and among the many new features shown is a new way of sharing photos.
“With more than 125 million users already enjoying iCloud, iOS 6 introduces new ways to share photos with friends and family using Shared Photo Streams,” Apple says. “Simply select the photos you want to share, pick which friends you want to receive the album, and the Shared Photo Stream album is instantly available on their iOS devices, iPhoto and Aperture on their Mac, via the web or through Apple TV. You and your friends can leave comments on or “Like” any photo in a shared album.”
Other new iOS 6 features include an all new Maps app, and better integration with the leader in shared photos, Facebook.
The Maps app features vector-based map elements that make graphics and text smooth, Apple says, and panning, tilting and zooming incredibly fluid. It has “Apple-designed cartography,” instead of past reliance on Google’s mapping information, and adds turn-by-turn navigation — a basic function on Android phones that was only available as a paid service on iPhones. Also, a new Flyover view has photo-realistic interactive 3D views.
Apple also introduces a new MacBook Pro laptop with “the world’s highest resolution notebook display: the 15-inch screen has more than 5 million pixels, which Apple says is 3 million more than an HD television. “At 220 pixels-per-inch, the Retina display’s pixel density is so high the human eye cannot distinguish individual pixels from a normal viewing distance, so text and graphics look incredibly sharp.” The Retina display uses IPS technology for a 178-degree wide viewing angle, and has 75 percent less reflection and 29 percent higher contrast than the previous generation.
The MacBook Pro featuring has flash storage and quad-core processors in a thin and light design, Apple adds. It measures 0.71 inches thick and weighs 4.46 pounds. Pricing starts at $2,200.
Lastly, Apple updated its photo management software, Aperture. Version 3.3 shares its photo-library with Apple’s free introductory iPhoto software, shows Raw files faster, and supports AVCHD video. Also, Apple says, the Highlights & Shadows tool delivers higher-quality results, a new Auto Enhance button has been added, and the White Balance tool includes Skin Tone and Natural Gray modes.