Yesterday at the keynote for WWDC, Apple unveiled the new features of iOS 6. It has been speculated that iOS 6 and the new iPhone (whether it be iPhone 5 or whatever they decide to call it) would mean the automatic failure of BlackBerry 10. After watching the keynote and reading up on all the new features of iOS 6 I find it hard to believe that it will pose a huge threat in stealing more BlackBerry fans away. There just weren’t any real “Wow!” moments during the iOS part of the keynote. Sure they announced that they were going to have their own maps apps, with turn by turn navigation, and yes Siri is going to get better, but did they add enough?
I am not delusional and I realize that the new iPhone when it launches this fall will sell like hotcakes and will definitely dominate BlackBerry 10 in pure sales numbers, but that does not necessarily mean it is better. RIM has made it clear that they are doing something completely different with BlackBerry 10 and that it will look nothing like previous BlackBerry operating systems. The one thing about iOS 6 that stuck with me is that it looks exactly like iOS 5 with some minor visual tweaks here and there. Apple has been making minor tweaks to, basically, the same OS for several years now. This is something RIM did as well, and they have now seen the light and are doing a full refresh.
Apple obviously doesn’t want to fix what isn’t broken, but the same old look is getting a little boring. And before anyone accuses me of being a “fanboy”, I currently own and use an iPhone everyday and I was really hoping to see something new and exciting from Apple. In fact of the new features are ones that we have experienced and loved on BlackBerry for quite some time. For example Apple introduced the “Do not Disturb” functionality which is basically bedside mode and custom profiles for ringtones and alerts. They also added the ability to use different signatures for separate email addresses, and added their own map app. In fact the new turn by turn map functionality is powered by Tom Tom, and guess who is supplying the same functionality for BlackBerry 10? Yes you guessed it, Tom Tom.
There are of course features like Facetime and Siri that are definitely some cool ones, but out of any enhancements made to the core communication functionality in iOS 6 there really wasn’t anything that I think will make BlackBerry 10 look outdated. If you were planning on waiting for BlackBerry 10 and the iPhone 5 to launch to make your decision, I can pretty much bet that iOS 6 isn’t going to sway you towards the Apple side. In the end I think it will come down to what Apple does to wow us with the iPhone 5 design that will make people want to jump ship, and honestly I think RIM is going to turn some heads with the BlackBerry 10 launch device. Maybe we might even see some lost souls return back to Team BlackBerry.
For a full list of all the new features in iOS 6 you can visit the Apple iOS6 page