Apple has released the third beta of its forthcoming iOS 5 to developers, offering the usual bug fixes and performance boost as well as some new features.
'Assistive Touch' is the main user-facing improvement and provides an alternative way of interacting with Apple devices. The feature aims to eliminate the need for the physical buttons on the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch by bringing up an onscreen menu.
The control panel is activated by swiping from the corner of the screen, and allows users to rotate the screen, control volume and lock the display.
There is also the option to 'shake' the device, but this has yet to be incorporated into applications. There should be some native apps which have the functionality when the operating system is launched and the API has been released to developers so they can build the feature into apps.
Below is a screen shot of the feature and 9to5 Mac has a demo.
Another addition is the ability to put apps anywhere on screen, and there is an all-new Location Services warning which displays the following message on first boot of the device: 'Location Services uses GPS along with crowd-sourced Wi-Fi hotspot and cell tower locations to determine your approximate location.'
Interestingly, iPhone Dev-Team member MuscleNerd has confirmed that the latest iOS 5 beta can be jailbroken using the Sn0wbreeze software.
Sn0wbreeze is an existing tethered jailbreak that can unlock iPhone, iPod and first-generation iPad devices.
IOS 5 is expected to ship in the next-generation iPhone 5 in September. There are reports suggesting that Apple will launch two versions of the iPhone at different prices.
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