Microsoft says Apple is playing catch up -

In one of the more ironic tweets of the year, Microsoft corporate vice president Joe Belfiore claims that Apple's new iOS features just copied what Vole already has.

As Steve Jobs was thrilling the faithful with what he just invented, Belfiore was twittering that he was somewhat flattered because lots of great Windows Phone ideas had been installed into Apple's iOS.

As you might expect certain corners of the press, which has been insisting that Steve Jobs has been behind every great technology since Fire and the Spinning Jenny, have been wading into Belfiore for daring to suggest that Microsoft might have come up with something first.  

However, he does appear to be right. Most of the innovations in the iOS 5 have either been in Windows Phone 7 for ages or have been in the public arena for months as coming out in Mango.

The first thing that Belfiore listed was a button for the camera. While we would have thought this was a no brainer, apparently on an iPhone it is much like a second mouse button. Apparently Jobs did not think of this one and it mimics the Windows Phone feature.

Jobs appears to have copied the auto-uploading of pictures. Windows Phone 7 can automatically upload each picture taken with the camera to either Windows Live SkyDrive or Facebook. On the iPhone users had to manually upload photos.

Microsoft's notification system was non-invasive which did not stop, whatever you were doing.

The iPhone stopped you mid-game to tell you to deal with the notification straight away.

While both operating systems do things differently, the fact that its notification system was so annoying had not occurred to Jobs' Mob until people started prasing Windows Mobile 7's equivalent.

The other thing that Apple copied according to Belfiore is the Wi-Fi device sync. This was first seen in the Zune. Apple refused to do anything about this for a long time. It really has come late.

With social not-working, Apple has finally got around to allowing an integrated Twitter.

Windows Phone currently offers an integrated Facebook in Windows Phone and Microsoft announced in January that Twitter would arrive in "Mango". Of course, Jobs' Mob beat Microsoft to getting the product to market, but Vole had told the world it was going to do it for a long time.

The fact that Microsoft has Facebook is probably a little more valuable than Twitter.

Jobs announced that the MacOS would get a background downloading service. Vole will have one in Mango and this has already been announced - as was the short messaging chat system.

Apple announced that iOS 5 will provide a proprietary messaging service, iMessage, between devices that run iOS 5. This is similar to RIM's Blackberry Messaging Service . The Volish equivalent in Mango service is a bit more useful and can be used to talk to people beyond a walled garden.