iOS 5 Review

By Tech Powered Dad | October 18, 2011

I was among the thousands that found it extremely difficult to update my iPad to iOS 5. There was a time last Friday when it was basically a coaster. After struggling with it for a few hours, I was able to make the upgrade work, and it is a nice improvement. I wanted to get up a quick post to highlight a few of the features I’m enjoying.

Having been an Android user for a couple of years, I am a little surprised how long it took for iOS to get some of the features it now has in version 5. For example, much has been made of the “pull down” notifications for email, messaging, etc. I’ve actually found myself trying to “pull down” the screen ever since I got my iPad in August, so I’m glad it’s finally there.

For teachers and students with an iPad, there are a couple of upgrades in iOS 5 that I think you’ll find especially useful. The biggest one is the reminders app. This gives you the ability to write up a list of “to do’s” and have the iPad remind you to do them. Whether you are a student with a list of homework reminders or a teacher with a list of grading reminders, it’s a nice feature.

I also love the tabbed browsing for Safari. This is another one I’m surprised they didn’t add earlier. Another cool feature is the ability to split the keyboard, allowing you do hold the iPad and just type with your thumbs. I actually thought it was too¬†gimmicky¬†until I tried it, at which point I found it to be a nice time saver.

While there are other features such as iMessage that are getting more hype, I think these are the features in iOS 5 that’ll make the biggest difference from a teaching and learning perspective. I hope to get a more general look at the iPad for education in upcoming posts.

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