Blog Post

New Features in iPhone Software 2.2

The latest version of the iPhone Firmware — version 2.2 — has been seeded to developers. It offers a few features which users have been desperate for, along with smaller additions which could lead to interesting new applications in the future. Whether you’ve been clamoring for Street View or would one day like to see a version of GarageBand for iPhone, you may be in luck. Some of the new features are detailed below, and a large selection of screenshots have also been posted online.

Street View

iPhone Maps Street View

After the excellent implementation of Street View in Google’s Android OS (see about halfway through the video demonstration), pressure was on for Apple to create similar functionality in the iPhone. This should be the case, with full support for street view and the potential of the ‘compass’ feature, which rotates the display of street view as you rotate the iPhone.

Public Transit / Transport Support

Public Transport in iPhone Maps

The iPhone now has the ability to provide directions through public transport (bus, train & walking). This is a great feature of Google Maps which will be welcomed on a mobile device. Hopefully, public transit directions will be provided on an international basis and not just for major cities in the U.S.

Location Sharing

The iPhone will also provide the ability to share your location with others. When clicking Share Location, it drafts an email with an http link filled out which, when clicked on another iPhone, will launch Maps & go to that exact location. While this has been achieved through other applications previously, it is now built into the Google Maps application.

Support for Line-In

Another release note mentioned that the new SDK supports the manipulation of line-ln audio accessories. This will give developers the ability to utilize higher quality audio inputs and create more innovative audio applications. The ability to record a real instrument at high quality into the iPhone could give way to a new surge in GarageBand style applications.

Still Waiting For…

While this release covers a range of highly anticipated features, there are still several missing. One maps feature which seems vital is the addition of turn-by-turn GPS. Why this wasn’t included with the initial release of the GPS enabled iPhone is beyond me, and I strongly hope that Apple finds a way to include software to provide this functionality in a future release.

Are there any other software features which you’d like to see in this release? Let us know in the comments.

117 Responses to “New Features in iPhone Software 2.2”

  1. 1) Fix the 2.0-introduced bug where I can’t listen to voicemail on a bluetooth headset.

    2) Give me a search field in the calendar app.

    3) Thread view in the mail app.

  2. One thing I haven’t seen mentioned which is essential for business is improved Active Sync support. Right now I only receive push email from my work’s Exchange server at the top most folder in my “Inbox” folder tree. I have lots of sub-folders for various projects and co-workers but I have to manually poll those sub-folders in order to see if there is new mail waiting for me in them.

    On a related note, those of you with sub-folders on an IMAP email server have the same problem. (i.e. sub-folders don’t update automagically even with “Fetch” active.)

    I can live without cut/paste if it means Apple will fix these shortcomings in the email app.

    Oh – one more thing: how about downloading the entire message from a POP account instead of just the header so I can read the whole message when I get on the subway in the morning (where I don’t have connectivity). (Unless there’s already a way to do this. Is there? Anyone?)

  3. Bob Helm

    The iPhone aGPS just doesn’t provide the accuracy at this time to provide and track routes. not sure if it is software related or aGPS technology. I would like to see them open up blue tooth to allow other devices to connect as opposed to just limiting blue tooth for head sets.

  4. Street View, nearly useless.
    Public Transit / Transport Support, ok, if you don’t have a car.
    Location Sharing, could be cool I guess.
    Support for Line-In, again nearly useless.

    What they should be working on instead of this crap, is turn-by-turn GPS, Background push for apps, more Bluetooth support (VCards, etc.), and if they get around to it cut/paste. No reason why they can’t do all of this, other than the fact they are hung-up on adding more useless things.

  5. omg, who CARES about MMS? what is the obsession with wanting to send HORRIBLE quality images at an inflated price to one another? It takes about 3 seconds to upload an image and email its location to people with the various apps and what not.

    MMS is a poor and useless technology, move on.

    (p.s. yey for background notifications and copy n paste)

  6. Carnivor

    at #12 Andy says:
    but also can we get a search box for the contacts – I have over 500 and the little scroll wheel on the side just doesn’t do the job when you have that many.

    We already do have a contacts search box, scroll up in your contacts list and you can also see a magnifying glass above A in the right side scroll

  7. Bastian Gatten

    MMS!!! Hello! Apple why won’t you enable MMS like every other phone on the market. I just don’t get it. It seams to be the most talked about missing feature. Yet we don’t have it. I honestly could care less about google maps street view. I would use MMS all the time.

  8. Search is included. At the very top of the list. You can even access it by clicking the Magnifying glass above the letter A on the right of the screen.

    More Bluetooth functionality would be great, especially a chat client using it.

  9. I agree with the MMS support; Cut, PAste & Copy, but also can we get a search box for the contacts – I have over 500 and the little scroll wheel on the side just doesn’t do the job when you have that many. Right now I have to use iphone google app to find my contacts, seem like apple could add a search field for me.

  10. What about MMS? I’m sick and tired of having the best phone in the world, but I still get text messages from my friends saying “You have recieved a multimedia message. To view it, go to…”. This is something that shoulda been on firmware 1.0!

  11. What about cut’n’paste – does noone exept me miss this feature?

    An other one is Sending VCards via Bluetooth and / or email… An import-Funktion would be nice, too…

  12. Wasif Malik

    What about Bluetooth access and connectivity with other devices such as keyboards,remotes,phones etc? I think it is the most unexplored area of the iPhone at the moment.

  13. @Brian Hogg: The difference is that instead of only being able to use the microphones that are built in (headphones & bottom) the SDK can access the dock connector for audio-input devices.

  14. What’s the difference between the new line-in support and the existing? I’ve seen a bunch of apps that will let you record audio, at pretty high quality; I’d be interested to see what the difference is.