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Private Framework
Availabile 3.0 – present
Class Prefix IOSurface

IOSurface is private CoreFoundation frameworks for managing pixel buffers, or in official words, "sharing graphics surfaces between applications"[1]. It is also a public framework in Mac OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard).

In 2.x the same function is provided by the CoreSurface framework. On 3.x CoreSurface is deprecated, and its functions are now wrappers of the corresponding IOSurface functions.

Converting IOSurfaces into normal images

Signature CGImageRef UICreateCGImageFromIOSurface(IOSurfaceRef ioSurface);
Available in 3.0 –
Signature -(id)initWithIOSurface:(IOSurfaceRef)ioSurface; // UIImage method.
Available in 3.0 –

In UIKit there are functions to convert an IOSurface to CGImage and UIImage.