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Apple’s iOS 4.1 out next week, iOS 4.2 following in November

Apple will release the latest software update for iPhone and iPod touch next week: iOS 4.1. New features include bug fixes, beefed up photography, and the Game Center community.

The latter is a biggie: it’s Apple’s version of Xbox Live, providing multiplayer match-ups, high-score tables, friend lists and achievements among other features. It’ll be incorporated into a host of iPhone games – Angry Birds was one shown at Apple’s launch event tonight.

Console firm Epic Games showed off a brand new iOS game during the event, codenamed Project Sword. Out later this year, it’s a stunning-looking 3D first-person shooter, with Game Center included for deathmatching and achievements.

However, Apple boss Steve Jobs pulled a surprise by also unveiling iOS 4.2, which will go live in November for iPhone, iPod touch… and iPad. That means folders, Game Center, multi-tasking and other iOS 4 features on Apple’s tablet for the first time.

It will also include wireless printing, and something called AirPlay, which will let you stream music, video and photos from your iOS device to your TV – via Apple’s new Apple TV set-top box, which was also announced today.

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