iOS 5 Releases Today, Everything You Need to Know

iOS 5 is finally here. Apple has confirmed that today is the iOS 5 release date, which means you will soon be able to upgrade to the latest version of iOS.

Apple typically releases software like iOS 5 between 9 and 10 AM Pacific (Noon to 1 PM Eastern), which means you should be able to download iOS 5 soon. Keep in mind that the iOS 5 release time could be as late as 6PM Eastern.

iOS 5 is the newest software for the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad devices. When you connect your iPhone to your computer to sync, you will be prompted to update to iOS 5.

Before you upgrade to iOS 5, we recommend taking these five steps to get ready for iOS 5. If you can’t wait to start using the new version of iOS, you can skip straight to our how to upgrade to iOS 5 guide.

iOS 5 brings over 200 new features to the iPhone and iPad. Many of these features help Apple catch up to a year’s worth of Android advances. Once you have iTunes 10.5 and iOS 5, you can enjoy all the benefits of iCloud — Apple’s new syncing service that helps you stay in sync and backed up without the need to plug in to a computer.

Most Anticipated iOS 5 Features

  1. Notification Center – In iOS 5, your notifications can be accessed from a slide down window instead of interrupting you all day..
  2. NewsStand – As apps grow to support it, the Newsstand will collect your newspaper and magazine subscriptions.
  3. Twitter Integration – Twitter is baked into iOS 5. If you want to share something, tap the Send to button and Tweet will be an option.
  4. Safari – With the new iOS 5 Safari, you get better performance, a reading list that syncs between devices and tabs on the iPad.
  5. Reminders – This app will help you keep on top of your full to do list. You can use the iPhone GPS to know where you are — so that you can get reminders at work or at home.
  6. Better Camera – The new Camera app allows you to use the volume buttons to take pictures, offers faster access to your camera and other improvements.
  7. New Mail App – Quit digging around for that message. Mail has improved search and new rich text formatting options.
  8. PC Free – Once you upgrade to iOS 5, you will be able to sync, upgrade and backup without wires.
  9. Game Center – New Game Center features allow you to add a photo and to play friends of friends.
  10. iMesssage – The new message app will intelligently send iMessages to other iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch users, so that you don’t have to pay for text messages.

While you wait for iOS 5 to download, which could take a while, here’s a video of iOS 5 features from Apple. You can get a look at the new operating system and what to expect.

Stay tuned for more tips on how to use iOS 5’s new features like Notification center, Reminders and more.