The Apple iOS 5 is a very different version from the previous ones, as it has the features that could compete, and actually beat the other mobile phone operating systems. So, once you update the devices to iOS 5, you would be taken through a tour of steps to be done before you start using the iPad. Once you perform those steps, you can consider yourself ready to explore the new interface made in the iOS 5 operating system version. Here is how to upgrade to iOS 5 in the various iOS devices, and the direct links to download iOS 5.
The first screen confirms with you that the restore of the iPad firmware and the upgrade was successful. You need to follow the steps and the iPad would be ready to use, with the new OS.
Once you hit Continue, you would be first asked whether you wanted to share your location using the location based services, i.e. Maps and few other apps use your approximate location to keep the data and even give you the information around the location where you are based. If you want to enable or disable it, you can do that on that screen and proceed to the next step by clicking on Next on the top right side.
Connect to the Wi-Fi network, or else if the iPad has the 3G option and you have the plan activated, you can select any one of the two. Keeping you connected to the web, would help in the next steps where you can login to the Apple account of yours, and setup the mail box too.
Apple ID for the setup of the iCloud, iTunes Store and the App store for the downloading and purchasing of the apps and backing up the iPad data through the iCloud. You can login to your account if you already have an ID, or else can register for a new Apple ID which would take a couple minutes and requires your confirmation via mail.
Setting up the iCloud is one of the important parts, the feature being new one in the iOS 5, and the iCloud stores photos, apps, contacts, calendars and more stuff sending all of it wirelessly to the servers or to the computer. You would be asked whether to merge the bookmarks on the iPad or not. Select an option and then hit Next.
Find my iPad is an app for the iPad which would help you locate the iPad in the map using the location services (remember the 1st step where you were asked about the location services, you need to select that as yes) and play a sound or display a message when you lost the iPad or forgot where it is. Activate this app to be safe and not worry about the iPad always.
Diagnostics are the data and daily diagnostics which are sent to the Apple servers regarding the usage and the products and services of Apple, so that Apple tries to improve the stuff in its next updates. You can select the “Automatically Send” option, as it won’t disturb you any time.
Once done with it, the setup completes and the ipad is now ready to flaunt its new iOS 5, and you can use it. A few noticeable things would be the notification panel on the top, which would open as you drag your finger from the top black line a little downwards.
Honestly there won’t be any much changes seen, because from what many other sources too say, the noticeable changes like the Siri (the virtual assitant) would be exclusively seen in the iPhone 4S and no other previous device. But the iOS 5 still has many internal changes, so its better to upgrade.