Plenty of useful new iCloud features were added in Mountain Lion–but even more are on the way. When Apple releases iOS 6 this fall, the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch will gain Mountain Lion’s iCloud functionality plus several all-new features that will allow you to share even more content with friends and family. Let’s take a look at the new iCloud functions that Apple has announced for iOS 6 so far.
Shared Photo Stream
Shared Photo Streams will be viewable in your browser through a special link.
Photo Stream shipped with the initial version of iCloud and allows you to view and sync the most recent 1,000 photos taken with your iCloud-compatible devices. With iOS 6, Apple will take this feature a step further by allowing you to create a Shared Photo Stream, which you can invite other people to join. When new photos are added to the Shared Photo Stream, all devices that subscribe to it will automatically get the images pushed to their devices.
Losing an iPhone is never fun, but Lost Mode might help you retrieve it.
Currently with iCloud, you can remotely lock your iOS device and display a message letting someone know that your device is lost. In iOS 6, Apple will take this functionality further by allowing you to put your device in Lost Mode. This new mode will lock your iPhone with a passcode and place a banner on the Lock screen letting anyone who finds it know that the device has been lost. You can specify a phone number where you can be reached, and whoever finds your phone will be able to tap a single button to call you. You will also be able to receive email notifications whenever the GPS location of the device changes, so you can pass those details on to the police when tracking a potential perp.
Location – Based Alerts in Find My Friends
Set location alerts and your contacts can get push notifications when you’re near.
Apple’s Find My Friends app introduced a new way to keep track of friends and family members. You can invite people to view your current GPS location right from within the app, and can set time limits for how long they can track you. In iOS 6, the app will include an option to receive location-based alerts. This can have many uses. For example, when someone is coming to pick you up, you won’t need to keep calling them to find out how close they are. Simply set a location-based alert, and you’ll get a push notification when they arrive at the location you designated. Pretty nifty, huh?
Go from reading an article on your Mac to iOS, or vice versa, without bookmarking the page.
Just as with Safari 6 in Mountain Lion, iOS 6 mobile Safari will include the iCloud Tabs feature, allowing you to view the currently opened Safari tabs on both iOS and OS X devices. You will be able to start reading an article on an iOS device and instantly switch over to reading the same article on your Mac.
Sync your stored Passbook items between your devices so that you’re always ready.
There are a ton of apps for things like gift cards and boarding passes. In iOS 6, Apple will combine those functions into a single, simple app called Passbook. With Passbook, you’ll be able to pay for your purchases using stored gift card codes; or, you could use a digital boarding pass the next time you fly. The best part is that your Passbook will be synced between your multiple iOS devices using iCloud, so you’ll never be without your morning cup of coffee–just pay with the gift card stored in Passbook on your iPad or iPhone.