By all accounts, the iPhone 5 is doing really well. The massive influx of iPhone 5 owners coupled with pre-existing iPhone owners upgrading to iOS 6 means that developers have to adapt to new rules when developing or upgrading apps. Apple held a long developer preview period for iOS 6 and are now doing the same with the next iteration of the OS.
Apple released iOS 6.1 beta today on the company’s developer Web site. The beta was made available right after Apple pushed iOS 6.0.1 to the general public. Interested developers can go grab the beta from Apple’s developer Web site.
Before developers get to coding, they may be pleased to know that Apple included a number of changes with the latest version of iOS 6. The biggest change is the addition of a new feature in iOS 6 maps that developers can take advantage of:
The Map Kit framework now lets you programmatically search for map-based addresses and points of interest. The MKLocalSearch class initiates a search for map-based content using a natural language string. In other words, you can enter placename information or portions of an address and have Map Kit return search results that match the information you provide. For example, searching for the string “coffee” would return the location of local coffee bars along with information about each one.
The beta is available for all iOS devices that can run iOS 6. The iPad Mini and fourth generation iPad are not included in the release list, but I would be surprised if they weren’t among the compatible devices.