More than High-Tech Gumdrops

Apple is certainly good at parceling out the candy, piece by piece, to keep the kids coming back for more. However, Apple's latest offerings—the iPhone 4 and iOS 4.0—are a lot more than high-tech gumdrops.

Our lead article looks at Apple's new phone and the latest version of the OS. The iPhone 4 is faster, more capable, and less power hungry than its predecessors; iOS 4.0 adds multitasking, folders, and more. Take a look at our review of the iPhone 4 and iOS 4.0 (page 10). We also discuss workplace implications (page 77) and what the new device/OS will mean for app developers (page 84).

Of course, the previous piece of Cupertino candy was pretty substantial as well. Almost all of the content in this issue is of interest to iPad owners, but we have a number of articles that focus specifically on Apple's new tablet. They include a look at the top iPad games, apps that turn the iPad into a mobile office, stands for the iPad, software and accessories that let you make mobile presentations with the iPad, the top Web resources for iPad owners, iPad apps for IT professionals, and more.

If you're interested in games, you should check out this issue's Apps section. We have a follow-up article on the Best App Ever awards, looking at the top games in 27 game subcategories. Remember that even if they're not written specifically for the iPad, almost everything in the App Store works on the iPad as well as the iPhone and iPod touch.

As usual, a good portion of this issue is devoted to people and how they use their iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad. Whether they're backpacking through Africa, making a business presentation in Stockholm, or bicycling through the Maryland countryside, Apple's mobile devices help them stay in touch and have fun. Finally, check out our special "iOS at School" section to find out how teachers and students are using the iPhone and iPod touch to make education more effective and enjoyable.

Apple spends a lot of energy and resources perfecting the eye-candy aspect of their products, and consumers respond well to the sleek designs. In addition, the people at Apple are masters of marketing. Just check out the new iPhone 4/Face Time commercial on TV—dad, away on a business trip, videoconferencing with his smiling infant son; a beautiful and very pregnant young woman talking to her husband stationed overseas, Louis Armstrong singing "When You're Smiling" in the background—it's brilliant.

In the end, however, benefits have to be based on compelling features that work—effortlessly and all the time! The iPhone 4 and iOS 4.0 aren't perfect, but they are most certainly a big step in the right direction.

Sept/Oct 2010
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