iOS 8 release date, news and features

09/04/2014

RELEASE DATE

As we already know, Apple likes to announce new iPhones on Tuesdays, make new iOS updates available to download on Wednesdays and, depending on availability, start selling or taking pre-orders for new devices on Fridays.

Considering a major Apple event reportedly scheduled for Tuesday, September 9, there’s a pretty good chance that iOS 8 will be on the company’s servers on Wednesday, September 10.

History has also taught us that when iOS updates exit beta in September, they spend one last week in a near-final developer state, aka the “Gold Master version.” We can expect that on or around September 3.

Without a question, developers can get their hands on the feature-limited iOS 8 beta now, but the wider audience has to wait a few weeks for the official release date.

COMPABILITY

When it comes to iOS 8 compatibility, Apple requires an iPhone 4S or newer and iPad 2 or newer to update to the latest software. The iPhone 4 is cut from the list.

Both the iPads mini and iPad mini 2 tablets and the forever alone iPod touch 5th generation are also going to work with the new iOS, just like they did with iOS 7. No one besides 2010’s iPhone 4 gets left behind.

As mentioned, iOS 8 beta 5 is available to download right now, but it’s locked behind Apple’s iOS developer program that costs $99 a year (about £58, AU$105 a year).
That’s a significantly small price to pay for app developers who are making money, but it’s not meant for curious Apple fans looking for an early upgrade to new features.

iOS 8 is buggy and unfinished right now and beta 5 isn’t likely to introduce enough fixes to warrant a try. There’s also a non-disclosure agreement attached to the program, so you can only brag so much.

The worst of all, not all features are enabled. It’s best to wait until the more stable iOS 8 Gold Master version arrives one week before the predicted September 10 release date.

TOUCH ID FOR ALL

Apple’s fingerprint scanner has been limited to bypassing the lockscreen and buying iTunes Store content, however, iOS 8 changes all of that as app developers get access to the five-digit login tool.

All sorts of apps will be able to use the biometric scanning home button instead of pesky pass-codes. So far this only applies to the iPhone 5S, but Touch ID is likely to come to the iPhone 6, iPad Air 2, and iPad mini 3 later this year.

At WWDC, banking service Mint.com illustrated how third-party Touch ID authentication will expand beyond its lockscreen and iTunes confines.

PayPal sent its developers to Apple’s Touch ID session at the conference, meaning all of your eBay and e-commerce transactions may be complete with the touch of the home button when upgrading to iOS 8.

Imagine, “Forget password” becoming a thing of the past as the pores in your fingertips act as a much more unique method of protecting your valuable data.

This Touch ID convenience is on top of the fact that iOS 8 is slated to scan credit cards via an iPhone or iPad camera and automatically fill in the details to make online shopping easier.

Of course, Apple went out of its way to say that even though you trust many app developers with your bank account data, they won’t have access to your biometric information. It’s locked away in the A7 processor.

Learn more about the iOS 8 Features

As published on: http://www.techradar.com