At WWDC 2012 in June, Apple announced its new mobile operating system, iOS 6, and pegged it with a release date sometime during the fall of this year.
The software is expected to come alongside the new iPhone, which is presumably going to be called the iPhone 5. It will also likely arrive with a new 7.85-inch iPad Mini, Apple’s newest member of the iPad family.
We expect iOS 6 to arrive shortly before both of those launches, as is customary with Apple releases, and while we still don’t have a specific release date to speak of, we wanted to make a few predictions about what iPhone and iPad owners shouldn’t expect from the iOS 6 release date when it arrives this fall.
Release on iPhone 5 Announcement Day
While many current iPhone and iPad owners, especially those with the new iPad and iPhone 4S since they will be getting the most from iOS 6, will want to see the upgrade arrive early, don’t expect the iOS 6 release date to come before the iPhone 5 announcement.
Last year, Apple announced the iOS 5 release date at the iPhone 4S event and the release to iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users came a few days after the announcement and a few days before the arrival of the iPhone 4S.
We expect the same to happen this year.
We’re also expecting the iPhone 5 to arrive in October and not in August or September so look for the release date to arrive in October.
A Smooth Update Process
Last year’s iOS 5 release date was marred by server issues and update errors that plagued iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users throughout launch day.
Unfortunately, there are more users than ever before that will be trying to download iOS 6 from Apple’s servers on launch day. This of course thanks to the successful releases of the new iPad and the iPhone 4S both of which that have gone on to sell in the millions.
Also keep in mind that iPhone 3GS users are in the mix, again, for iOS 6, so there will be no shortage of users trying to install on day one.
Hopefully, Apple learned its lessons from last year but even if it did, we still expect there to be issues.
Happy iPhone 3GS Users
Apple shocked just about everyone when it announced iOS 6 would be coming to the iPhone 3GS, a phone that is over three years old. Of course, the iOS 6 that will be coming to the iPhone 3GS will be stripped down almost completely but that doesn’t mean that iPhone 3GS will be happy on iOS 6 release date.
Why? Two reasons. One, iPhone 3GS owners will be upset to find that the only things iOS 6 will have brought to the phone are the new UI and the new Maps app.
And if they aren’t unhappy about the lack of features, they are probably going to be unhappy about how the software runs.
iOS 5.1.1 runs decently on the iPhone 3GS but it’s not perfect. Apple will be adding to the software with iOS 6 which could make for an even worse experience.
One thing that Apple does extremely well with its mobile software is making sure that iOS is void of as many bugs as possible. The beta process helps in that regard. Unlike major Android updates that plague both aging and current devices, iOS updates generally don’t wreck havoc on devices.
The company also doesn’t have to work within the confines of a public deadline, something that often makes Android manufacturers and carriers rush to put out an update that contains several nasty bugs.
Apple will make sure that the gold, final version of iOS 6 is solid across the board which means that iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users should expect a well-oiled, not rushed, iOS 6 on release day.
A Roll Out of the Same iOS 6 We Saw at WWDC
Last year, Apple waited for the iPhone 4S announcement to reveal Siri, the device’s unique personal assistant feature. And while we still don’t know what Apple has planned for the iPhone 5, we expect it to come with something unique in terms of its software.
Right now, the front runner is an NFC chip that might tie into iOS 6’s Passbook feature but that’s only speculation at this point.
What’s not speculation is that Apple failed to reveal all 200+ features of iOS 6 at WWDC so iDevice owners should expect a very robust piece of software at launch and one that will likely come with one or two more big additions that weren’t seen at WWDC.