iOS 6, the next major operating system update for Apple’s iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch devices, is scheduled to arrive today.
iOS 6 includes a completely new Maps application, replacing the Maps offering that was powered by Google data and has been around on the iPhone since it was released in 2007.
Apple is also upgrading the features and capabilities of their personal assistant, Siri.
Also included in the iOS 6 update is Facebook integration similar to last year’s Twitter integration, the ability to share your Photo Stream with the people you choose.
Passbook is Apple’s new tickets and “rewards cards” system that has the potential to become a big hit with customers and retailers if Apple turns it into a full fledged alternative to Near Field Communications (NFC) payment systems being offered by by Google and others.
The Phone application has been enhanced with some much needed features on call management when you are unable to answer the call right away – like when you are sitting in a meeting. Something that I have been waiting a long time for because this is a feature that my 2007 Palm Treo 700 had.
The Camera app now has a cool panorama photo mode that helps you take some amazing panoramic photos. I’m actually looking forward to playing with this feature during outdoor fall activities. It should make for some very nice photos.
Apple has also included updates to Safari, Mail, and FaceTime.
To learn more about the major new features in iOS 6, check out the Apple website.
The iOS 6 upgrade will be available for the iPhone 4S, iPhone 4, and iPhone 3GS; for the iPad 3 and the iPad 2; and the 5th and 4th generation iPod touch.
The iOS 6 upgrade is a free upgrade that will be available as an update delivered over-the-air or a download package when you sync your device over the wire with your Mac or Windows PC running iTunes 10.7. iTunes 10.7 can be downloaded directly from Apple.