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Bill Lueg’s Tech Blog

iOS 5 Upgrade for iPhones and iPads (and Macs)

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Yesterday, Apple made available the iOS 5 update for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch that they announced back in May. This is one of the most highly anticipated updates they’ve offered in iPhone history. If the download and wait times were any indication, we all seemed to go at once. My updated was fraught with a few problems and it required updating every piece of computing equipment I own, but it all finally came together without out having to manually make any weird changes. So a word to the wise is to set aside some time, and maybe wait a while.

The biggest feature in iOS 5 is iCloud which takes over syncing duties from MobileMe and it effectively frees you from syncing your devices to get contact, calendar, photos and other updates. From my experience, it still requires a sync (at least at this point) to move music, videos and podcasts back and forth. I like keeping these in a central repository on my iMac, but we’ll see what happens after Apple gets this stuff moved to the cloud as well.

Because of iCloud, you have to update all your Macs and PCs. Updating your Macs requires an upgrade to Mac OS X 7.2 Lion. Snow Leopard is right out. You need to upgrade anyway unless you have some software that just isn’t compatible. PCs require Vista or better (what isnt’?) and the iCloud control panel from Apple. Everyone must upgrade iTunes to 10.5 or you won’t be asked if you want to upgrade. So all told for Macs, that’s about a 2 GB download per computer just to get ready.

So now you’ve upgraded your computers and you’re ready to update your devices. iTunes is running, you plug in your first device and it asks you to upgrade. You click OK. iOS 5 gets downloaded (700+MB) It backs up your device successfully it query’s Apple’s servers and because it’s the first day, it waits and waits and waits. But finally you get a connection. In my case and that of many others, we got an error saying that our device couldn’t be updated and to try again later.

Fortunately, you don’t panic. You try again later. It fails again later. But after some long suffering (God’s all about building your character, you know), the update happens, a restore takes place and then all of your apps, music and videos get reinstalled. If you take the waiting times out, the update took about an hour.

I got everything back intact. After a day with the stuff, this is a marvelous upgrade. The movable keyboard on the iPad that makes the keys smaller and closer to your thumbs is a dream come true! Location based reminders are awesome. I only have an iPhone 4 (poor pitiful me 😉 so I haven’t tried Siri, Apple’s speech recognition software, but the demos I’ve seen from impartial people look like something out of the 21st century.

I’ll add more in the coming days, but I’d love to know your thoughts and your experiences so drop me a line.

10/14/11

MacWorld is reporting that Apple has done something on their end to fix the installation woes a lot of us have been having. Check it out here.

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Written by walueg

October 13, 2011 at 4:36 pm

Posted in technology

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