Members of the Apple Developer Program now have the option to download and install the preliminary beta of the much-hyped iOS 4.2 by Apple for iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch. MacStories is reporting that the download weighs in at 514MB for iPad and 617MB for iPhone 4.

iOS 4.2 for iPad includes a number of features already built, optimized and released for the iPhone, including multitasking, folders support and unified mail inboxes. In addition, the Game Center application is now present, allowing users to challenge and compete against their friends or anyone else who has a free Game Center account. New features not seen before on any devices include the ability to print photos, web pages, documents and more to a printer shared on the wireless network, and AirPlay, a free service that allows the streaming of video, music and photos from the iPad to the newly-updated Apple TV. Furthermore, the update includes the ability to search for text on web pages and features a variety of updates with regards to enterprise support, providing businesses with the ability to “take advantage of stronger security features, new device management capabilities, and improved enterprise integration.” (Apple, Inc.)

As is evident from a number of screenshots from MacStories, iPad folders will support up to 20 applications, and a brightness control slide bar can be accessed via the iPad’s home button for applications that don’t integrate it themselves. Apple have also reportedly changed the purpose of the switch on the iPad that serves as a rotation lock to a mute switch, like on the iPhone. The rotation lock button is now accessible through the multitasking bar.

Apple usually releases around five betas followed by Golden Master (GM) version before rolling out the update publicly to all users, in an effort to iron out bugs and improve overall efficiency. iOS 4.2 is scheduled to be released publicly sometime in November.

[Image courtesy of Apple]

Posted in: App Store Insiders, Blog

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