Apple issues first iOS 5.1 beta to developers

iOS 5.1 beta

The next minor version of iOS has just been seeded to Apple developers, bringing with it at least one welcome addition: voice recognition in text input areas.

This would allow the user to speak instead of tapping through the on-screen keyboard in any area that requires text input, for instance you could dictate messages to the AOL Instant Messenger app or the Twitter app.

Apple notes that the new feature will be coming to “supported devices”, which could mean all devices that can run iOS 5, or it could mean all devices that support voice dictation via Siri, which would be just the iPhone 4S.

We will update this post when we hear more about how it all works and whether older devices will be able to use it.

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