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iOS 6.1 Release Date & Feature Predictions

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A couple of weeks after releasing iOS 6.1 Beta 3, Apple released iOS 6.1 Beta 4 to participants in its developer program. While that is certainly fantastic for those who are able to download the fourth beta of iOS 6.1, it’s also very good news for consumers who are awaiting the iOS 6.1 release date and the features that will be coming along to the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. That being said, it’s time to make some predictions in regards to those two aspects of Apple’s largest iOS update since iOS 6.

iOS 6.1 is going to be the company’s biggest iOS update since iOS 6. iOS 6.0.1 was the first update since Apple rolled out its brand new operating system back in September, but it was just a minor bug fix update. And even then, it didn’t take care of all of the bugs that iPhone, iPad and iPod touch owners saw come along with Apple’s original iOS 6 update to those devices.

Read: iOS 6.1 Release Date Inches Closer.

iOS 6.0.1 also did not bring any new features to the table. iOS 6.1 promises to bring at least a few features to the table along with bug fixes and enhancements that should help shore up the iOS 6 experience on Apple’s mobile devices.

As an iPhone 5 and iPad third-generation user myself, I am more than excited to get my hands on Apple’s upcoming update. And I’ve also been thinking quite a bit about what my iPhone 5 and what iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users around the globe can expect from Apple in terms of the iOS 6.1 release date and its features.

Now though, it’s time to make some predictions in regards to features and the iOS 6.1 release date.

iOS 6.1 Release Date Predictions

Previous rumors suggested that the iOS 6.1 update for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch would be out at some point after the holidays. And given Apple’s past timing between beta releases and the releases of the final versions of its iOS software, we can make some educated predictions about when to expect the iOS 6.1 release date.

ios-6-logo-hi-res-460x460Mid-January Release

It’s clear, with the release of iOS 6.1 Beta 4, that Apple is getting very close to getting iOS 6.1 perfected and ready to roll out to owners of its mobile devices. The release of iOS 6.1 Beta 4 comes just a few short weeks after Apple released iOS 6.1 Beta 3 which we believed was the last Beta update for Apple’s new software. However, Apple, in a bit of a surprise, rolled out a fourth beta which was seemingly aimed at eradicating some of the bugs that came along with the last version.

So, assuming that the new Beta did just that, we should be well on our way to a Gold Master of iOS 6.1. But when might it arrive?

With iOS 5.1 Beta 3 and iOS 5.1, Apple took a little less than two months to roll out the update. That led us to believe that Apple might roll out iOS 6.1 at some point toward the end of January or in the early part of February. iOS 5.1 Beta 3 was the last Beta for iOS 5.1. Looking even further back though, with iOS 4.1, Apple released the last Beta for it, iOS 4.1 Beta 3, in the early part of August. It then rolled out iOS 4.1 on September 8th, 2010. So, a little over a month.

Assuming Apple does something similar here, look for the release date to come no sooner than January 3rd and no later than mid-February. And if we had to predict, look for the update to roll out in mid to late January with the middle part looking especially good

iOS 6.1 Feature Predictions

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iOS 5.1 offered a host of features and fixes. iOS 6.1 should as well.

And what about the features? Well, we already know three of them thanks to the betas but there is likely going to be more to it then just a new addition to Siri, an improvement to Apple’s Maps and a new look for the music controls on the lock screen. Here is what we think could happen with the iOS 6.1 features.

At Least Two Key Bug Fixes

Owners of the iPhone and iPad have been dealing with two distinct issues since the release of iOS 6.0 and iOS 6.0.1. One of those issues is Wi-Fi connectivity. While many users, myself included, saw iOS 6.0.1 fix the Wi-Fi issues that came with iOS 6, others are still having problems.

There is a 166 page thread going on over on Apple’s forums that continues to this day, wherein users are complaining about problems with Wi-Fi on their mobile devices. There are some possible fixes on there that seem to have worked for some people but not for others. That being said, I think that Apple will further address this issue in the iOS 6.1 update. Way too many people complaining for it not to at least attempt to do something.

One other issue that iDevice owners have been emailing me about, especially owners on the iPad, is an issue with the time and date. Seems the time and date sometimes magically jumps up for some users. We heard about this issue with the Verizon iPhone 5 and it’s clear that some users are still having issues. Others, report is being resolved. Still, we think Apple will probably introduce a more permanent fix with the iOS 6.1 update. At least that’s our hope.

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I predict little relief for iPhone 5 owners experiencing reboots.

No Random Reboot Fix

One fix I don’t see coming along with iOS 6.1 is a fix for the one issue that is driving me mad. Since I bought the phone, I’ve been dealing with random reboots that happen a couple of times a week, sometimes a couple of times a day. So far, I can’t figure out what the problem is but I do know that others have been having the issue as well, a list that includes one of my colleagues, Josh Smith.

So far though, I’ve not discovered any fixes nor have I found any possible remedies through others experiencing the issue. I can only hope that Apple takes notice of the small group of people that are seemingly dealing with this issue but right now, I predict that we’ll be left in the cold by iOS 6.1

More Features Than Advertised

While many iPhone, iPad and iPod touch owners may be resigned to the three advertised features from the Betas, I think there will be a couple of other features on board when iOS 6.1 arrives. I doubt that any of these features will be big, but Apple tends to include some smaller features in its .1 updates for iOS. For instance, last year with iOS 5.1, Apple included some tweaks to the camera in which it picked up all faces, optimized sound for TV shows and movies on the iPad, and some more minor features that weren’t heavily advertised or talked about prior to its release.

I expect some more of that with iOS 6.1.

It’d be great to see Apple add some small tweaks to Do Not Disturb, one feature in particular that we’d love to see is syncing a schedule across devices, but we may have to wait for iOS 7 for that.

Better Battery Life

With iOS 5.1, Apple made some tweaks that were aimed at making battery life better and I think that Apple will likely be doing something similar with iOS 6.1. There are many owners, iPhone 3GS in particular, who have complained about poor battery life with iOS 6.0.1 and Apple will likely try to appease them by fixing some issues, likely unnamed, that might be affecting battery life.

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I think iPhone 3GS owners should see improved battery life.

As a whole, I expect battery life for many users to improve once iOS 6.1 comes along.

What are you predicting for iOS 6.1?

32 Comments

  1. Greg

    12/17/2012 at 3:33 pm

    Is the random reboot issue very widespread? I know quite a few people with iPhone 5s that do not have this issue. Maybe the problem is specific to your iPhone? If so, you can swap it out for a new one at the Apple Store.

    • henh

      12/18/2012 at 7:39 pm

      my iPod touch 5th also randomly reboot three to four times a day

      • Darren Whalen

        01/10/2013 at 8:51 pm

        Mine does that too.

    • Erin

      12/20/2012 at 12:32 pm

      i had an iphone 5 that did that i called apple and they sent me a new iphone and since then i haven’t had any it happen. i also went from the 16gb to the 32gb i bi*c* a lot and they upgraded my phone.

      • Luke

        01/13/2013 at 7:48 am

        What exactly did you say to them to get upgraded? I’m getting really ticked at my 4S, because it shuts off like 4 times a day.

    • Andy Hyatt

      01/06/2013 at 7:40 am

      There is no iPhone 5s!

      • Darius

        01/07/2013 at 7:33 am

        iPhone 5′s as in plural genius.

        • Tim

          01/22/2013 at 6:06 am

          LOL, you made my week

    • prtk

      01/10/2013 at 9:19 am

      never have this problem till date on my iphone 5 . its about a monh old

    • Mart

      01/10/2013 at 2:42 pm

      I have a 4s with random reboots.

  2. ad111

    12/17/2012 at 5:28 pm

    Another major bug I hope they have fixed is the Bluetooth connectivity issue. Since the upgrade to IOS6 and iPhone5, I have lost the ability for handsfree operation with both my headset and my car for incoming calls, both of which worked perfectly with IOS5. If that is not fixed, I will have to go back to my 4 or upgrade to a Galaxy S3.
    https://discussions.apple.com/thread/4349029?start=240&tstart=0
    https://discussions.apple.com/thread/4313768?start=0&tstart=0
    https://discussions.apple.com/thread/4318307?start=0&tstart=0

  3. Russ

    12/17/2012 at 6:29 pm

    As I am one who’s been afflicted by the Wi-Fi issue (in my case, it’s incredibly slow), I personally am really hoping for a Wi-Fi fix to be included.

    Oh, and there’s a similar thread on the discussion forums that’s up to 180 pages: https://discussions.apple.com/message/19662780#

  4. Mahfuj Rob

    12/18/2012 at 7:48 am

    I just updated my iPhone and now it won’t boot all the way up. It’s stuck at the Apple logo, or continually turns on and off but won’t boot up to the home screen. Help! How do I fix this?

    • Xblazestormx

      01/10/2013 at 4:59 pm

      Restore it on iTunes

  5. Wole

    12/18/2012 at 10:13 am

    I really wish Apple would include a file repository for attachments in the update. The absence of this in the most recent version of the iOS is a major minus for Apple. For crying out loud, I wanna be able to documents to my emails, not just photo and video.
    Hope someone at Apple will do something about this.

  6. Daniel Jon Hindmarch

    12/18/2012 at 4:17 pm

    6.0.2 helped fix my wifi problem and I get the re booting problem but its only happened three times in my phones life span I’ve had it two month x also I don’t understand why apple would release a major ios when it has bugs that’s what the betas are for !!

  7. MatchkeY

    12/20/2012 at 5:56 am

    Random reboots are a hardware problem, have had my 4s replaced because of it…

    Check out the diagnostic logs (drill through settings pages).

    • Greg

      01/05/2013 at 12:22 am

      I have had 3 4s replacements. I am still having the issue:(

  8. ChrisNewman

    12/23/2012 at 2:55 am

    Kind of weird because me and a few of my mates have all got the 5 and not one of us have a problem… My battery lasts me 2-3 days, has not once randomly rebooted, wifi is superb, even apple maps hasn’t been to bad – however google maps is still preferred. I think those with problems just need to simply restore the software, if no luck then replace the phone. The only one issue I have is the auto focus magnetic lense rattles a little to loudly if u listen out for it.

  9. Luis Fernando

    12/31/2012 at 5:20 pm

    Estoy muy triste ya q mi iphone 5 se descarga muy rápido, la batería no me dura todo el dia

  10. flakefrost

    01/02/2013 at 10:38 pm

    Gotta’ love better battery life. It comes in handy everytime I go camping in Australia!

  11. FAKER

    01/08/2013 at 5:21 pm

    This article was stupid, you just kept repeating yourself again and again, stop writing this garbage

    • prankster

      02/09/2013 at 10:05 pm

      Or better yet stop reading it and go cry to your mummy

  12. Hany10

    01/08/2013 at 11:42 pm

    Would ios 6.1 be availlable for iphone 4s ??

  13. Leigh Brown

    01/08/2013 at 11:53 pm

    Is there any information about the “No Signal” fault that’s popping up on the iPhone 5?
    There’s hundreds of posts of people’s iPhones just dropping it’s reception and unable to get it back unless you reset the phone.

    • Chris T

      01/10/2013 at 9:51 am

      I had same problem with replacement iPhone number 2, i took back to apple with screen shots before and after “reset” and they replaced it, however, I just switched airplane mode on off to work around resetting but annoying none the less, now I have iPhone 5 that works in that respect but the wifi no longer works. This is my 3rd replacement and if iOS 6.1 doesn’t sort issue I will be looking at replacement number 4. iOS 5 on iPhone 4 worked perfectly :(

  14. Pfffff!

    01/12/2013 at 8:51 am

    leave the writing of articles to the pros kid

  15. Shadow

    01/13/2013 at 9:38 pm

    I have an iphone 4 32gb that is on 6.0.1 non jailbroken and I have not had any rebooting problems at all. The battery life is not really a problem for me cause I rarelly play games on it. I can go a whole day and have about 65 or 70% left from normal use. When I am at home I turn off my data and just use wifi that saves the battery life more. I will be updating to 6.1 for sure when it gets out.

  16. Ghost

    01/16/2013 at 7:55 pm

    On my iPhone 5 sometimes the screen when touched applies the touch some where else (I’d be typing and it would click Somthin somewhere else on the screen) 😒

  17. Mr T

    01/17/2013 at 1:21 am

    still no sound fix?

  18. Rajesh

    01/17/2013 at 10:52 pm

    I think this rebooting problem is rare bcoz i have been using two iphone 5 still now i dnt have such problem so you better swap it….

  19. Andy66

    01/20/2013 at 6:38 am

    I’m currently using iOS 6, and my ipad is working fine, based on previous experience with all updates apple release they always, without fail have the following results. 1 after initially seeming to run smoother, strangely about a month later the device becomes more sluggish, further updates just make the problem worse. 2. Battery life is always sacrificed and apple always promise the next fix will sort out these issues. However, battery life has gotten progressively worse ever since the original iPhone was released (I used to get two days of massive use, iPhone 5 struggles to give just 6 hours of screen on time). 3 just about every promised feature is never delivered and we iPhone users still don’t have a long overdue universal search option that wp7 and 8 have enjoyed for nearly 3 years. Siri? Who actually uses this? The only time I ever call up Siri is if I accidentally hold the home button when I put my ipad in my bag. Please don’t misunderstand me, I think my ipad is the best piece of tech I have ever owned, I just want to live with os6 permanently, it is after all, the os it was designed to run. Okay, it drops wifi maybe once a day for no reason, but it switches over to 4g automatically, so who cares? Not me. Yes, apple maps is bad, but that will take years to fix, worldwide mapping is a huge undertaking, anyway bing maps on ipad absolutely rock (dl the bing app and see for yourselves).

    Update to 6.1 at your peril, my advice is wait a month and read the forums. They’ll be packed out (as always) with users complaint of high battery drain, sluggishness and apps either failing completely or obscure crashes of the entire device.

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