Earlier this week, Apple released another iOS 8.4 beta update, a sign that the iOS 8.4 release date for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch is inching closer. With this fresh round of information in mind, we want to take an updated look at what we think iPhone, iPad and fifth-generation iPod touch users can expect now from the iOS 8.4 release.
A month ago, Apple released its iOS 8.3 update. The update serves as the company’s current version of iOS though it will be replaced in the future by a newer version of iOS 8 dubbed iOS 8.4.
Weeks ago, Apple confirmed its iOS 8.4 release with the start of the iOS 8.4 beta. The first iOS 8.4 beta confirmed a release and confirmed a ton of features but it did not outline a specific iOS 8.4 release date. This wasn’t too surprising given that Apple only announces specific iOS release dates on stage next to new hardware. All iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users can do now is wait.
While we wait for Apple to deliver, we continue to get bombarded with questions about the iOS 8.4 release. We can’t profess to have all of the answers but we think we have a pretty good idea about what to expect from Apple, from the iOS 8.4 update and from the iOS 8.4 release date. With iOS 8.4 now on its second beta, we want to take an updated look at what we expect from Apple’s next big iOS 8 release.
More iOS 8.4 Beta Updates
Expect Apple to release more iOS 8.3 beta updates and here’s why.
The iOS 8.4 beta 2 that Apple released this week is riddled with problems. iOS 8.4 beta users on the MacRumors forums have pointed out four new bugs and they’ve also outlined a number of other issues plaguing Apple’s next iOS 8 update.
To us, it’s a sign that the iOS 8.4 update isn’t ready for public consumption. And we’re probably headed for at least one more beta, probably two. Both for developers and for the public.
Music App Will Be the Biggest iOS 8.4 Feature
At this point, it’s pretty clear that iOS 8.4 will revolve around the big time changes coming to the Music application. Apple continues to refine and fix its revamped Music app and while it’s not perfect, we’ve seen substantial progress made with the release of the iOS 8.4 beta 2 update.
iOS 8.4 is expected to lay the groundwork for the company’s upcoming music streaming service. The service will reportedly debut at WWDC 2015 though it’s still not clear how Apple will release it to the public.
We don’t expect much in terms of surprise features. We could definitely see a few minor additions but look for the new Music application to be the biggest change on board Apple’s brand new iOS 8 release.
Apple Watch Tweaks on iPhone Side
We haven’t seen beta testers confirm anything but we wouldn’t be surprised if Apple installed a few iPhone-side Apple Watch tweaks on board the iOS 8.4 update.
The Apple Watch release has been smooth for some users but Apple is Apple and it’s continually working on improving its software with enhancements and fixes. We would not be surprised if the iOS 8.4 change log featured a number of bug fixes and enhancements with Apple Watch fixes and enhancements leading the way.
iOS 8.4 Release Date in May or June
Apple hasn’t announced an iOS 8.4 release date so all we can do is make some educated guesses.
We don’t expect the iOS 8.4 release date to be right around the corner. There’s still work to be done. Apple typically spaces its beta releases out by a couple of weeks so unless Apple makes huge strides in the next two weeks, we would not expect the iOS 8.4 release date to arrive in the first half of May.
At this point, our best guess is that it will arrive in late May or sometime in the first three weeks of June. So either a little before WWDC 2015 or around WWDC 2015. Given its ties to the music streaming service and the fact that it needs to be refined, this timing makes the most sense. To us at least.
iOS 8.4 Release Time
While the iOS 8.4 release date is hard to predict, the iOS 8.4 release time is not. We continue to get questions about the iOS 8.4 release time and what we can tell you is this.
Apple almost always releases its iOS updates on a weekday between 10AM and Noon. So, if you don’t see an update roll out by the time the clock strikes Noon, you’re probably not going to see an iOS 8.4 release that day.
Last Major iOS 8 Update, Last iOS Update for Some Devices
We expect Apple’s iOS 8.4 update to be next in line. What that means is that we don’t expect Apple to roll out an iOS 8.3.1 update. iOS 8.3 is extremely stable and with the iOS 8.4 release making progress, we’re guessing that Apple’s engineers are full steam ahead on its next big release.
We expect iOS 8.4 to be the last big iOS 8 update before the release of iOS 9. iOS 9 is rumored to be coming in the fall alongside the iPhone 6s. While we could certainly see a bug fix or two push out between the iOS 8.4 release and the arrival of iOS 9 (especially if developers release a jailbreak), we wouldn’t expect an iOS 8.5 update or anything that’s on par with iOS 8.4.
Finally, we also expect iOS 8.4 to be the last major update for some devices. Candidates include the iPad 2, a device that’s received four iOS updates since its release, and the discontinued iPhone 4s.
iOS 8.4 Jailbreak
At this point, we’re not expecting an iOS 8.3 jailbreak. The window for developers is closing and it looks like their attention has shifted to Apple’s next big update, iOS 8.4.
Developers have successfully jailbroken iOS 8.4 but that doesn’t mean that an update will be released to the public. That said, we’d be surprised if developers were unable to release a jailbreak for iOS 8.4.
Finally, we’d expect the iOS 8.4 update to deliver excellent performance. Apple’s taken a different approach with its iOS 8.0 update. Instead of releasing tons of smaller updates and one big x.1 update, the company’s pumped out a bunch of smaller bug fixers and several big time updates. That, combined with the beta process, have helped to stabilize the software.
With iOS 8.4 undergoing a lengthy beta process and with the iOS 8.3 update as stable as it is, we’re expecting iOS 8.4 to be a high quality update that serves as a stable bridge between iOS 8 and the company’s iOS 9 update.