Apple still has not announced an iOS 6.1 release date though it has been rumored to be coming after the holidays. And according to one reliable source, the iOS 6.1 release date could be getting extremely close as it appears either the next beta or even the gold master version of the software could arrive as soon as December 31st or January 1st.
According to noted iOS hacker Stefan Esser, also known as i0n1c, Apple will likely be releasing either the next iOS 6.1 beta or quite possibly, the gold master of the iOS 6.1 software which means, that if the latter is true, we could see the software roll out just a few days after the new year.
With iOS 5.1, Apple released the finished and fully tested version of iOS 5.1 on March 6th which was followed soon after by the iOS 5.1 release date which took place on March 8th. With iOS 4.1, Apple took about a week from the release of its GM build to release the software to the public. So, assuming it does the same thing with iOS 6.1 and assuming Esser is dead on with his information, we could see iOS 6.1 potentially roll out in the first half of January.
Apple never releases information about release dates for its in-between software updates so neither December 31st nor January 1st is set in stone. But given that Apple released the iOS 6.1 Beta 4 earlier this month, it’s clear that the company is making progress towards its largest update since it released iOS 6 in September alongside the new iPhone 5.
iOS 6.1 will follow iOS 6.0.2 which Apple hastily released earlier in December to patch up a Wi-Fi issue. It’s expected to feature a couple of new features including a different looking music control on the lock screen, a more prominent place to report bugs in Apple Maps, and a new feature in Siri that allows users to purchase movie tickets using the virtual assistant and Fandango.
It’s entirely possible that Apple has further features up its sleeve and we should also see an assortment of bug fixes and enhancements for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch owners as well.