The problem was, naturally, the lack of functional multitasking on a user-level.
The reason was, of course, that Apple is a company that puts user experience at the highest priority. They needed a new OS, new APIs to manage multiple processes while making sure background work didn’t make the important processes (namely the foreground process, the interface and the actual phone functions) seem sluggish.
This means that even though they came up with the function very late, compared to other smartphone operating systems, Apple seem to have gotten it right on the first try – while the others still haven’t caught up, despite years of chances to fix this feature.
Well, this was a positive thing, in my opinion; it shows that the guys at Infinite Loop are still prioritizing correctly, unlike most software makers. Even most of those I really want to like. Yeah, Linux/free software/open source people, I mean you!
I’m not sure what to think of the iAd feature yet, though. On one hand, it’s kind of good to have an API that (hopefully) limits how disturbing ads can get. On the other, I’m really not comfortable with that kind of thing – especially considering they surely aren’t going to accept ad blocking software in the app store anytime soon, and I still prefer some kind of privacy and personal integrity to the alternative…