iOS 11.4 and Beyond: How is Apple’s Software Heading into WWDC?

As we discussed last week, iOS 11.4 gifted some very popular features to the Apple community. By this point, iOS 11 is a mature piece of software, and has thus become quite stable. Despite this, development on iOS 11 has not yet concluded; Apple has pushed the first beta of iOS 11.4.1 to developers and public testers. Though no software is bug free, Apple is squashing as many as possible before iOS 11 is out of development.

iOS 11.4 and Beyond: How is Apple's Software Heading into WWDC? 1

Some quick things to keep in mind

iOS 11 has been an interesting talking point in the Apple realm, for many. Combing through forums and online communities paints a very polarizing picture regarding satisfaction. While many users have loved the additions iOS 11 and later have brought, the software also has plenty of critics. It’s important to keep in mind that the loudest voices come from extreme ends of the spectrum.

With any software, the majority of users will be satisfied with the overall product. However, just because a large portion of users experience few (if no) issues, there are still people experiencing real issues. Minor, moderate, or severe, these problems can effect how users interact daily with their devices. Discounting true frustrations is not an effective way to tackle bugs – but it is a good way to alienate a chunk of users. Experiences with iOS 11.4 are no exception to this.

What are some common issues with iOS 11.4?

Messages in iCloud

  1. Problems with attachments: As with many updates, the addition of new features brings about new, related bugs. With the arrival of Messages in iCloud, iOS 11.4 users are reporting some issues related to message syncing, especially with attachments. Many running Apple’s latest software are facing some challenges retrieving all photos and documents within their conversations. In some cases, these attachments are showing up out of order. In these instances, users claimed that restoring their devices as new recovered all attachments.
  2. Messages out of order: Messages in iCloud relies on syncing over the air, often handling gigabytes of messages per user. Until the syncing mechanism has been fine-tuned, little quirks will unfortunately exist. Another related problem has to do with messages appearing out of order. While Apple claims to have fixed this in iOS 11.4, some customers are still experiencing odd behavior.

AirPlay 2

  1. Response lag: Some users streaming audio between AirPlay 2 devices are experiencing some problems with delay. Though AirPlay 2 and iOS 11.4 were supposed to fix latency issues, there still seems to be some response lag for users. This is not a universal problem, but worth mentioning for owners of HomePods and supported speakers.
  2. Apple TV and HomePod integration: Occasionally, users are experiencing issues syncing HomePod audio playback with their Apple TV units.

In general, Apple users are reporting problems often associated with most iOS updates, such as issues with slowness and battery drain. It is hard to assess these claims, as people configure their devices in different ways. Remember that new software may need to “settle in” for a couple of charge cycles before one can review battery life.

Testers are also playing around with iOS 11.4.1, which includes bug fixes that did not make it into iOS 11.4. Later today, Apple also plans to unveil iOS 12 and release its first beta to developers for testing. With a focus on performance and stability, Apple is making a big push towards software quality with its next major release. Though there are some bugs remaining, rest assured that iOS 11.4.1 and later will fix even more pesky issues.

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