It’s early but today we take a look at a few things we think we know about the upcoming iOS 11 release for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.
iOS 10 isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Apple recently released its iOS 10.2.1 update and the company’s confirmed a much larger iOS 10.3 update for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. The iOS 10.3 update is in beta ahead of a release later this year.
While most people are focused on iOS 10.2.1 and iOS 10.3, others are looking ahead into the future. iOS 11 rumors have started to emerge and they’ve generated some buzz amongst iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users.
The iOS 11 update isn’t confirmed, far from it, but there are a few things we think you should be aware of as we push deeper into the year.
This iOS 11 release roundup covers some of the basics including the potential iOS 11 launch date and the iOS 11 release date. It also takes a look at the devices that could be left behind on iOS 10 and some of the early rumors.
We’ll continue to add new information about the iOS 11 release to this roundup so check back for regular updates throughout the year.
iOS 11 Launch Date
Apple hasn’t announced an iOS 11 launch date yet but it’s easy to predict when we’ll see the company unveil its next operating system.
For several years now, Apple’s announced new iOS software during its Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) keynote.
The company recently confirmed its WWDC 2017 dates so we now have an exact date in mind for the iOS 11 launch.
WWDC 2017 is confirmed for early June with dates stretching from June 5th to June 9th. The event is moving from San Francisco to San Jose.
June 5th is the date to circle on the calendar because that is when Apple should deliver its annual keynote. Apple typically confirms new iOS software, dates, and betas during its WWDC keynote announcement.
If you want to attend the event and see the iOS 11 launch live, note that tickets will be offered by random selection for $1,599.
Apple’s WWDC 2017 ticket lottery registration opens up on Monday, March 27 at 10:00AM Pacific for members of the Apple Developer Program and Apple Developer Enterprise Program.
To register, you must be a member of the Apple Developer Program or Apple Developer Enterprise Program as of February 16, 5:30AM Pacific. Your membership must also be in good standing with Apple.
iOS 11 Beta
Apple typically releases an iOS beta shortly after the conclusion of its WWDC keynote so it’s safe to assume the company will release an iOS 11 beta in June.
We expect the iOS 11 beta to mirror last year’s iOS 10 beta with a release for two different groups of testers.
Look for the iOS 11 beta to come to paid developers first before shipping out to those in the free Beta Software Program.
Apple’s beta software program is free for anyone with a working Apple ID and it lets the public test new iOS features and performance ahead of the official release date.
iOS 11 Release Date
Like the iOS 11 launch date, the iOS 11 release date is fairly predictable.
Apple hasn’t confirmed a specific iOS 11 release date and its WWDC announcement will probably come and go without a firm date.
That said, you can expect the iOS 11 release date to land sometime in the fall alongside Apple’s new iPhone models.
Before iOS 11 arrives, we’ll get at least one more milestone upgrade to Apple’s iOS 10 operating system.
Apple is currently testing an iOS 10.3 update and it’s expected to debut alongside new hardware in March.
The iOS 10.3 update will deliver a new Find My AirPods function, performance improvements, bug fixes, and more.
Will My Device Get iOS 11?
“Will my phone get iOS 11” is becoming a common question amongst our friends, family and our readers. Apple hasn’t confirmed anything yet but it’s fairly easy to predict which devices will get iOS 11 and which ones may not.
Apple’s most recent iPhones and iPads are in. If you own an iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPad Pro, or iPad mini 4, there’s nothing to worry about. You’ll get iOS software updates for a couple more years at least.
There are, however, a few devices that are on the fence. The iPhone 5, Apple’s aging former flagship, is one such device.
Last year, Apple left the iPhone 4s on iOS 10.3.5 and we could see the iPhone 5 left behind on the last version of iOS 10.
Apple also left the original iPad mini and iPad 2 behind which means the iPad mini 2 is on the potential cut list for iOS 11.
Other popular devices like the iPhone 5s, iPhone 6, iPad Air, and iPad mini 3 should be safe.
iOS 11 Update
As for the iOS 11 update itself, details are scarce.
A report from Business Insider claims Apple is planning to add “augmented reality technology into the iPhone’s camera app.”
Apple is reportedly exploring AR and mixed reality but it’s unclear if they will make it to the iPhone and iOS in 2017.
One questionable rumor from Israeli site The Verifier suggests Apple will be baking Group FaceTime calls into iOS 11. The report cites “several people familiar with iOS development.”
The feature will reportedly allow iOS 11 users to start multi-person calls via a group conversation in iMessage with up to five people allowed in on the call.
The site notes that while Apple is working on the feature, it could opt not to release it on iOS 11 and save it for a future update.
Another rumored iOS 11 feature is far more believable.
RIP 32-bit emulation mode in iOS 11? pic.twitter.com/byMFuJPuVN
— Peter Steinberger (@steipete) January 31, 2017
iPhone and iPad users testing the iOS 10.3 beta have discovered a warning message when trying to run 32-bit applications.
The message in iOS 10.3 says these apps “will not work with future versions of iOS” and that the developer will need to release an update for them to continue running properly.
The apps still work with iOS 10.3 which means we could see Apple shut the door on older apps with the release of iOS 11 later this year.
Another possibility? A full-fledged Dark Mode.
— Andrew Wiik (@Andywiik) June 16, 2016
The feature, which briefly emerged in the iOS 10 beta, didn’t make it into iOS 10’s final release in September but there’s a chance Apple revives it with iOS 11.
iOS 10.3 Release Date Narrows
The first thing to get excited about is that you won't have to wait too much longer for iOS 10.3 to arrive for your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch.
If you're uninterested in trying out the iOS 10.3 beta, or if you're dealing with an maddening problem on iOS 10.2.1 on an older version of iOS, you should know that the iOS 10.3 release date should land in the near future.
We haven't been able to nail down an exact date but we now know it'll be out before the end of April.
Apple's announced a new Clips application (more on that later) that it's planning to release sometime during the month of April. How does the iOS 10.3 release play into this? Well, iOS 10.3 is required to use the Clips app.
iOS 10.3 is also required to use one of the new features on board iTunes 12.6.
iTunes 12.6 features a "Rent once, watch anywhere" that allows iTunes users to watch their movie rentals across all devices. This feature requires iOS 10.3 to operate, a sign that we're really, really close to a release.
If not March, we'll probably see it touch down sometime in early April.