iOS 5 On Schedule for a Fall Release, Heavily Integrated with the Cloud?

Techcrunch’s MG Siegler is reporting on information from two “solid sources” that iOS 5 is on schedule for a fall 2011 release – not a spring release to coincide with a new iPhone – and that it will include heavy cloud integration.

Their sources also told them the following:

  • iOS 5 will launch in the fall and will be a major revamp of the OS.
  • It could well be previewed at WWDC, it just won’t be released then.
  • The iOS 5 launch is also likely to coincide with the release of a new type of iPad, which we previously reported on.
  • The new iOS will be heavily built around the cloud, and we could see several new services launch from Apple that take advantage of this.
  • Yes, one of those is very likely a “music locker” service. There is also a fall launch aim for this, during Apple’s annual music-themed event.
  • But much of the cloud stuff will first be talked about at WWDC, Apple’s developer event which will take place in June.
  • One of the new cloud service elements is likely a location service that focuses on finding friends and family members.

Siegler speculates that the iPhone 5 could still be announced at WWDC and released shortly thereafter, but would instead be running a version of iOS 4.x instead of iOS 5.

For my part, I’m doubting this. First off, it seems odd for Apple to break off of a cycle that has been very profitable in the past. Even more so, however, is that I’m not sure that Apple would “heavily” tie iOS into the cloud. The whole concept of the cloud is something that Apple, for the past five or six years, has failed to totally grasp in a way that makes sense for a normal consumer. For example, MobileMe. While it is actually quite good now (ignoring the price tag), it was originally unreliable, experiencing massive outages for hours at a time.

If Apple feels that they have a grasp on this aspect of technology now, then I would expect them to slowly build up, instead of just releasing everything at once.

Still, it is definitely an interesting concept – after all, what would a cloudy iOS look like?


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