It’s no secret that Apple’s reputation for manufacturing top-drawer hardware and software that “just works” has taken a bit of a battering over the years, thanks largely to its penchant for rapid iOS releases (is it really possible to create glitch-free iOS updates at such a frenetic pace?). But a recent post on industry pillar 9to5Mac strongly suggests that its reputation could be about to be redeemed when iOS 9 debuts.
Instead of cramming in ever expanding new functionality and features every year as before, the priority for the next-generation iOS 9 is stability: after its release this year, the post suggests, there will be a “potential breather”. The aim is to ensure that iOS 9 optimises core user experience and renders iPhones faster and more stable.
While the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus have thus far enjoyed a rapid and seamless user experience, users of the older generation devices (including the iPhone 5 and iPhone 5C) will be breathing a sigh of relief. All were beset by several pesky problems: if you wanted to use a Bluetooth keyboard for a little content writing, you may have had to suppress the urge to stamp on the phone, as you would if you wanted to listen to a little audio via Bluetooth speakers. There were also reported problems with the calendar, WiFi and the battery after iOS 8 last year (iOS 8.2 is, though, expected to fix these).
The 9to5Mac report refers to “a collection of under-the-hood improvements”:
“Sources tell us that iOS 9 engineers are putting a ‘huge’ focus on fixing bugs, maintaining stability, and boosting performance for the new operating system, rather than solely focusing on delivering major new feature additions.”
This will be welcome news to many, although how it will square with the simultaneous release of the S generation iPhone 6 and 6 Plus remains to be seen (S versions usually involve major hardware changes and major memory upgrades are apparently planned).
That said, future iOS updates are intended to be more manageable, like iOS 8.1.3, leaving a smaller footprint on the platform. At launch, iOS 8 gobbled up a massive 5GB of storage; given that Apple is still selling iPhones, iPads and iPod touch products starting at 16GB, that’s one sasquatch-sized a footprint. Sometimes, less is more.