The iOS 10.3.3 update is the final iOS 10 release for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch and today we want to touch on the most important things to know as we make the push toward the arrival of iOS 11.
iOS 10.3.3 isn’t as exciting as the company’s iOS 11 update but it’s still an extremely important release thanks to the bug fixes and two dozen security patches on board.
Apple’s latest iOS 10 update is a fairly small upgrade but even the smallest maintenance releases can have a dramatic impact on your device’s performance.
We’re now several weeks into the iOS 10.3.3 release and we continue to hear complaints about its performance on popular devices like the iPhone 7, iPhone 6s and iPad Pro.
Now that we’re getting extremely close to the next iOS update, we want to walk you through the most important things to know about the iOS 10.3.3 update as we approach the iPhone 8 launch and iOS 11 release.
Let’s start with a quick look at the iOS 10.3.3 update’s performance on five popular iPhone variants and several versions of Apple’s iPad.
iOS 10.3.3 Review
iOS 10.3.3 is a maintenance release but it’s actually rather large for some of Apple’s iOS-powered devices. We’re talking 137MB for the iPhone 7. That’s pretty big for a maintenance update. It’s also fairly sizable for the iPhone 5 and Apple’s other iPhone and iPad variants.
Before we get into our some initial thoughts about iOS 10.3.3’s performance, we want to share a few notes about the installation process with those of you installing iOS 10.3.3 for the first time.
The update took about a minute to download and about six minutes to install on the iPhone 7. It took about eight minutes to install on the iPhone 5.
If you’re coming from an older iOS update, your update could take a little longer to install due to the iOS updates you missed. Their features and fixes will be baked into your version of iOS 10.3.3.
So far, the iOS 10.3.3 update is treating the our iPhone and iPad models well. We haven’t noticed any weird battery drain or any issues with connectivity.
We’ve tested the devices with Bluetooth headsets and speakers and we were able to get strong, solid connections. We’ve also tested these iOS 10.3.3 updates with a couple of different routers (including eero) and we haven’t noticed anything out of the ordinary. LTE and 4G data connections from AT&T are reliable as well.
We haven’t stumbled upon any experience-breaking bugs (random reboots, extreme lag) though the SoundCloud app has crashed multiple times on the iPhone 7.
We’ve also noticed a bit of keyboard lag on the iPhone 5 and it continues to plague the device weeks after the update’s release. That’s something to think about if you haven’t installed iOS 10.3.3 yet.
If you need additional feedback about iOS 10.3.3 and its changes, take a look at our reasons to, and not to, install the iOS 10.3.3 update.
For more detailed feedback about iOS 10.3.3, take a look at our iPhone 7, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6, iPhone 5, iPhone 5s, and iPad iOS 10.3.3 roundups. They include quick iOS 10.3.3 reviews for each device.
iOS 10.3.3 Problems
The iOS 10.3.3 update went through an extensive beta process but problems made it into the final release.
iPhone and iPad users are complaining about wonky battery life, app crashes, Bluetooth issues, installation problems, random reboots, and lag. Again, the update is mostly stable on our iPhones and iPads.
Unfortunately, once you make the move to iOS 10.3.3, you’re stuck.
Apple’s no longer signing off on iOS 10.3.2 which means you can’t drop back down to it if your device starts to struggle on iOS 10.3.3. This is a permanent change.
Apple doesn’t allow you to go back to anything older than iOS 10.3.2 either so if you haven’t installed iOS 10.3.3 yet, and you’re running something older like iOS 10.2.1, iOS 9, or iOS 8, you should be extremely careful when moving to iOS 10.3.3.
Some of you might be better off waiting for iOS 11 now that it’s this close.
iOS 10.3.3 Update: What’s New
The iOS 10.3.3 update isn’t a milestone upgrade which means it doesn’t come with a huge set of new features for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.
The official change log notes that iOS 10.3.3 is focused on fixing bugs and improving device security. iOS 10.3.3 comes with two dozen security patches including one that tackles a potentially dangerous Wi-Fi exploit called “Broadpwn.”
The iOS 10.3.3 beta featured new wallpapers for the iPad Pro but you don’t need to install iOS 10.3.3 to get these new wallpapers on board your slate. You can download them onto your 12-inch iPad Pro right now.
We could see hidden features and unlisted bug fixes emerge in the days ahead so we’ll let you know what we find as we dig into Apple’s latest and perhaps last iOS 10 update.
iOS 10.3.3 Jailbreak
A quick note for those of you that still like to jailbreak.
Jailbreak developers have reportedly cracked Apple’s iOS 10.3.2 update and iOS 11 beta. The functional jailbreaks were shown off at the MOSEC (Mobile Security Conference) in Shanghai, China earlier this year.
Unfortunately, we haven’t heard anything about an iOS 10.3.3 jailbreak. This doesn’t rule out a public iOS 10.3.3 jailbreak tool but it doesn’t breed confidence.
For now, those of you looking to jailbreak iOS 10 should avoid iOS 10.3.3.
The iOS 10.3.3 is officially the last version of iOS 10.
Apple’s confirmed an iOS 11 release date for September 19th. This is the release date for all iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch models capable of running the new operating system.
iOS 11 will bring more than bug fixes and security updates to select iOS users. Apple’s loaded its next operating system up with new features including upgrades to Siri, a brand new Control Center, and the ability to screen record.
We also expect it to bring bug fixes for lingering iOS 10 problems and security patches for potential exploits.
Most iOS 10-powered devices will receive iOS 11 though some, including the popular iPhone 5, will be left behind on the iOS 10.3.3 update.
Those of you with one of those devices will need to find your fixes elsewhere.
Install iOS 11.3 for Better Security
iOS 11.3 also includes a new privacy feature. When an Apple feature wants to use your personal information, an icon now appears with a link to access detailed information about how your data will be used and protected.
If you're running iOS 11.2.5 or older, you're exposed to an issue that lets people send a specific character that will crash an iOS-powered device and block access to the Messages app. It can also block apps like Facebook Messenger, Gmail, Outlook, and WhatsApp.
The iOS 11.2.6 update's main purpose was to patch up this issue. If you skipped iOS 11.2.6, you'll get these enhancements with iOS 11.3.
If you're running iOS 11.2.2 or below and receive a certain GitHub link through your Messages app, your iPhone or iPad can lockup or respring. The Messages app will also become unusable.
If you're on iOS 11.2.1, your iOS 11.3 update includes security improvements to Safari and WebKit to mitigate the effects of Spectre. If you're running an older version of iOS, your iOS 11.3 update will come with a lot more.
Apple's iOS 11.2 update fixed several problems, but it also brought problems of its own including a potentially nasty zero-day iOS HomeKit vulnerability.
The vulnerability, discovered by Tian Zhang, allowed for unauthorized control of HomeKit accessories including garage door openers and smart locks.
Apple quickly rolled out a server-side fix, but the company restored full functionality with the release of iOS 11.2.1. If you skipped iOS 11.2.1 and use HomeKit, you should download iOS 11.3.
If you skipped iOS 11.2, you'll get a few more patches with your iOS 11.3 update. Apple's iOS 11.2 update delivered 11 patches including one for Mail and one for Wi-Fi.
The iOS 11.2 and iOS 11.2.1 updates also patched up a widespread security issue called "Meltdown." Apple says its analysis suggests it "has the most potential to be exploited."
Meltdown affects all iOS 11 powered devices so we highly recommend downloading iOS 11.3 if you skipped iOS 11.2.
If you skipped iOS 11.1.2, iOS 11.1.1, and iOS 11.1, you'll get additional patches with your iOS 11.3 update.
The iOS 11.1 update delivered eight security patches including a fix for a serious Wi-Fi vulnerability called KRACK or Key Reinstallation Attack. KRACK is an exploit that targets the common WPA2 encryption protocol.
If you're just now making to move from iOS 10 (or whatever you're on) to iOS 11, your iOS 11.3 update will come with additional security features.
In iOS 11 you can't establish trust with a PC using fingerprints alone. You'll also need to put in a full passcode in order to gain that trust.
If you skipped older versions of iOS, your iOS 11.3 update will come with an even longer list of security patches.
Apple's iOS 10.3.3 update delivered 24 security patches addressing potential issues with Contacts, Messages, Notifications, and Safari. It also included a patch for a potentially dangerous Wi-Fi exploit called "Broadpwn."
If you skipped iOS 10.3.2 you'll get 23 additional patches with iOS 11.3. And if for some reason you missed iOS 10.3, you'll get 60 security patches with your iOS 11.3 update.
If you want to protect the data you store on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, you should make your move to iOS 11 and iOS 11.3 soon.
This is particularly important for those of you running older versions of iOS.