As much as we think not, our memory in general is not very good. Just two years ago, on iOS 11, we had a very troubled and criticized release. Apple promised to fix all its flaws and happily fulfilled that with iOS 12, one of the most praised updates of recent times.
Unfortunately, the iOS 13 this year it surpassed 11 in slips – it is not for nothing that, in just two months, it has already received eight (!) updates. The most recent, 13.2.3, came out last Monday (11/18) – and iOS 13.3 has already reached its third beta in parallel; most likely, it will be released to all users sometime in December.
On the one hand it is very positive to see Apple recognizing the critical state in which iOS 13.0 came into the world and rushing to fix all the bugs as quickly as possible. Personally, I see no problem in releasing as many updates as necessary to improve the system, after all, it is ridiculous to easily and quickly apply an iOS update today. Now, if you want the system does it automatically for you while you are sleeping.
But of course, the ideal was that iOS 13.0 had come into the world (much) more polished than it came. There is no perfect software, we would certainly have received some updates from then – but probably not eight, and not in this “desperate” mood to correct clearly unacceptable flaws.
That’s why, for the iOS 14 (which is codenamed «Blue»), Apple decided to change the way it develops its operating systems internally – including also iPadOS, macOS, watchOS and tvOS, of course. The information was obtained by Bloomberg, after an internal meeting recently held by Apple’s software boss, Craig Federighi.
So far, the so-called «Daily builds» of the systems (that is, new test compilations that are generated daily by Apple’s development teams) were incorporating new features left and right, regardless of their stage of development. Then, little by little, everything was being polished for a final release.
The big problem with this method is that it makes it very difficult to get a real sense of what is actually ready for release and what is not, not to mention that many features sometimes end up negatively affecting others that were already working well.
For next year’s operating systems, Federighi and his team are incorporating a system of «Flags» which will require that new features have to be enabled manually in a special area of internal systems. Thus, it will be easier to identify what is causing problems and even cancel or postpone a possible new feature for the following year’s system.
For now, Apple’s plan is to bring to iOS 14 as many new features as iOS 13. But the company is fully willing to postpone certain features to iOS 15, if necessary.
Behind the scenes of iOS 13
The report of Bloomberg it also brings some behind-the-scenes information about the development of iOS 13. According to sources heard by the vehicle, at the time of the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) 2019, in June, internal Apple teams already recognized that the system was “a mess”.
In August, a few weeks before the deadline to finalize the iOS 13.0 that would be installed on the iPhones which would be announced in September (now known as 11, 11 Pro and 11 Pro Max), Apple engineers practically decided to “abandon” efforts in poly it and focused on the iOS 13.1 – which, fortunately, ended up being anticipated and was released just five days after 13.0.
For Apple’s internal development team, iOS 13.1 was in fact the official release version of the new system. IOS 13.0 only came out because it had to be installed on the new iPhones, and Apple hoped that only «fanatics» would install it on their devices.