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iOS 6 has hit town. And no, Google Maps is not on board.

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Apple’s latest software for iPhone and iPad–including the new i5–has ditched Google Maps in favour of its own in-house mapping system.

The new version is the first to replace Google Maps with Apple Maps and includes in-house-designed cartography, turn-by-turn navigation and a Flyover view of traffic.

An Apple Australia spokeswoman said the local version would offer standard and satellite views, directions, traffic, local search, business reviews and photos.

However, no 3D building view for Oz, yet.

Apple says iOS 6 is “the world’s most advanced mobile operating system” with 200 new features in all. 

For starters, iOS 6 is much friendlier with Facebook, offering better integration with iOS Contacts and Calendar, and users can post directly from the Notification Center.

There are also Facebook (and Siri)-enabled Photos, Safari and Maps apps. And lets not forget iPhone’s Facebook Camera that lets iOS-ers upload pics instantly to the network, unveiled in June.

Another big change is Passbook, which stores e-tickets, airline boarding passes (Virgin Australia are already on board) and coupons, makes up slightly for the fact the iPhone 5 lacks Near Field communication (NFC) technology for tap and touch mobile payments.

Apple has also updated its FindFriends app for iOS 6, which helps you locate other Apple users nearby and have added a button which lets you text iOS friends, notes Ars Technica who got hands on with the new app.

Siri also promises improvements including better access to sports scores, get restaurant recommendations and movie listings on command

 

iOS 6 is also said to be Apple’s most secure version yet.

The new features means “hackers can no longer use some of the most common methods for breaking into software,” writes Lysa Myers on Intego’s Mac Security Blog.

However, Cupertino’s arch rival Google isn’t out of the iOS picture completely and will have its YouTube app onboard, rather than its previous in-house application. 

iOS 6 is available for iPhone 3GS, 4 and 4S, a well as the iPad, iPod Touch 4th gen, and the new Touch model, announced last week.

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