Review: iOS 4.0 On My iPhone 3GS


With all of this iPhone 4 buzz I couldn’t resist installing iOS 4.0 on my iPhone 3GS today.

First impressions

  • iOS 4.0 seems faster. A few flicks from screen to screen and I noticed a difference. All in my head? Maybe, maybe not.
  • Multi-tasking is amazing. Double tap the home button and a custom list of apps appears at the bottom of the screen. (can’t wait for this on the iPad!)
  • Folders are a fantastic feature. Simply drag the apps you want into a specific folder and they appear. You can quickly return to the home screen view, no lag, no back button, just tap off to the side or slide the folder shut.
  • Threaded messages in Mail and a unified inbox system. Incredible and about time!
  • Screen orientation lock. Instead of a hardware button like on the iPad it’s an icon in the multi-tasking menu.
  • Skip/Play/Next iPod options in the multi-task menu make quick song switching a breeze without having to leave the running app.
  • You can now zoom when using the Camera which is a nice touch as well.
  • Google Maps has been updated. It seems more responsive. As well as a few icon changes.
  • The inclusion of GameCenter app is pretty neat for those who actually play iPhone games.
  • Another great new feature is the ability to click Listen when you receive a Voicemail notification.

Overall, iOS 4.0 looks to be a very impressive and long awaited upgrade for the iPhone.

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  • Vincent H.

    I've been playing with it for the last 36 hours and:
    1- It really look faster on my phone
    2- I'm missing the double tap to reach my favorite phone number and call them fast
    3- The application needs to be recompile with 4.0 SDK in order to stay “open” when in background, if not when you switch between them, they only reopen.
    4- We should be able to “exclude” an account from the unified inbox…I have 6 accounts and I don't want my work email to be with my other email.

    Question: how do you use with the camera ? I'm trying to “pinch” and it doesn't work

    Great upgrade!


  • Roger

    Is there any indication if Mobile Safari supports extensions in iOS 4, like the new Safari 5 for OS X does?

  • When you tap the screen with the Camera running a slider appears with a + / – on it. Simply drag the slider up or down to zoom.

    As far as the multi-tasking goes, you are correct in that it is currently not truly “running” the app simultaneously. Once the apps are updated using 4.0SDK it will work as it should. However, even as it is now, the ability to quickly switch between apps is far better than having to close them and slide through pages of homescreens to open another app.

  • xxJDxx

    Where can we get iOS4?

  • JP

    Can you set custom tones for text/email on iOS4? It is killing me that still the only way to do this is to jailbreak your iPhone.

  • Xaroc

    no new sounds, or options. that is still a jail breaking add-on sadly.
    i was watching for that throughout the entire beta testing.

  • Xaroc

    Itunes June 24th. Only Developers and us with special privileges can get it.
    there is “Other” ways to get it, but you will have to google that yourself myfriend

  • Xaroc

    I have used Every Beta starting from 1.
    The first thing i noticed is Games that seemed to lag at specific spots have really cleared up (3Gs)
    Example: Final Fantasy. In towns with Water it really got choppy, in iOS4 is not nearly as choppy anymore, they have really found a way to give your 3Gs that extra kick

  • François LR

    Does iCal finally have a Week view, like in iCal on a laptop ? I miss that view on my iPhone. That's the one I use most. 🙁

  • Xaroc

    No. Same as before

  • Chritopher Aceto

    In order to get iOS 4.0 on your iDevice you will need to install itunes beta 9.2 and restore your device using the appropriate iOS4 ipsw.

    I will post instructions and links shortly!

  • Ex


    iOS4 requires a registered UDID in the devloper portal. Be mindful of
    posting links and instructions before the official release, which is
    when everyone can do it.

    Many people may attempt to install iOS4 and severly damage their device.

    Thank you

    – Administration

  • We should refrain from posting links on how to install iOS 4.0 on unregistered devices here. Thanks Chris 🙂

  • Everytime Apple releases an iOS update, it's super exciting. Compared to the past, software updates rarely would ever add new features or make your phone faster. I would always buy a new phone every 6 months!

  • Vincent H.

    Well, that's not true for the GM build 🙂

  • Ex

    No matter.

    The links have not been made public by Apple. Until then, links will
    not be posted here.

    Thank you

  • lello91

    Having posts on how to jailbreak your device is any more legal then posting on how to install a torrent based iOs 4? lol

  • Randy

    Chris, I've heard some people say that iOS4 does not have “true” multi-tasking (whatever that means) and in your article, you mention that a “custom list” of apps appears.

    Can you expand a little further? It's one of the biggest selling points for me, and I'd like to understand exactly how it works.


  • JonnyGerman

    What about improvements to the Camera Roll? Sure would be nice to be able to actually create Albums in the app!

  • x00carly

    Aww, I was really excited to have iOS 4.0 before everyone else 😉
    There are step-by-step instructions on other websites…is it seriously harmful for my phone to be trying this? I'm far from a professional. If it's going to damage my phone, I'll wait. What do you think?

  • This post very informative,Thanks

  • This post very informative,Thanks

  • Madibaman

    If I were to upgrade my 3GS – currently at 3.1 – to iOS4, will it still remain unlocked or would I be doing something I'll regret? Thanks!

  • Madibaman

    It's not jailbroken, by the way, merely unlocked. Hong Kong version.

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  • Thank you for this reviwe.
    I have a (old now) Iphone3gs and until I will buy IPhone 5(IPhone 4 is too early for me), I will try
    this day an upgrade for my iPhone.

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