Whereas the iPhone 4 strengthened the brand with its ultra-crisp, bright HD display, multi-tasking capabilities, front and rear facing cameras and much improved A4 processor; the 4S, however great it may be (that you hate and love at the same time), is relying heavily on the integral strength of its operating system. Without question, iOS5 is the star of the show this time round.
iOS5's major hook is quite rightly iCloud, Apple's re-branded attempt at cloud computing (previously known as MobileMe. Despite numerous teething problems expected at launch, iCloud is simple to use, highly beneficial (moving from iPad to iPhone has never been so slick) and a welcome introduction to cloud computing for the masses. Moreover, it demonstrates iOS5's core perfectly: to provide an effortless user experience. That means iUser's can now wirelessly sync their device(s) to iTunes – it'll even do it automatically while charging through mains – be notified of incoming messages via text or social networks with the integrated Notification Center (straight from Android, left) and message other iOS5 users for free with the cloud-sourced iMessage.
Ready for the iPhone 4S's much improved camera, iOS5 also comes with a nice variety of photo and camera tools; including the ability to tinker with images (correct red-eye, crop and rotate) and – finally – take snapshots with the '+' button rather than the fiddly touch-screen. Alas! All in all, iOS5 is a quite considerable update for a quite magnificent iPhone. 9