One of the upcoming features in iOS 5 that I am downright nearly giddy about is iMessage. I am stingy with text messages because, frankly, they are expensive for what they are. I have had the 200 messages per month plan at $5 since day one with AT&T, which, unfortunately, is no longer an option. If I ever change my texting plan, I lose my preferred option forever. The next one up is $10 plan, which includes 1000 messages. Now, the message per dollar ratio is better with the new low-end plan, but that is an extra $60 per year.
Now, a fair amount of the people I interact with use iPhones (even more with iPads and iPods touch). With iMessage, I will get all the benefits of texting with none of the costs. The best part is the experience looks to be seamless. iOS will check the contact to see if they have iOS 5, and if so, will use iMessage. If not, it will fall back to your carrier texting plan.
I think one of the larger benefits of iMessage will be interacting with several friends in the UK quickly and easily. There have been many times where I have a question for one of these friends, and a text message would be a fantastic medium. Sadly, I've had to resort to twitter or email. Twitter is great, but not everyone is constantly checking it, and email — well, no one wants more email.
iMessage is one of those features that will change things a lot. And I love that it is practically a giant "screw you" to carriers and their insane texting fees.