For almost as long as we can remember (and we do remember when you had to pay for iOS updates!) Apple has released the new version of iOS in September each year along with the new iPhone(s). This year is looking no different, as Apple has already shown off iOS 11 at WWDC 2017 and has released it for public beta testing ahead of its final release later this year. (Here’s how to install iOS 11 right now.)
The rumours and leaks for the iPhone 8 continue unabated, but while this year’s hardware could well include some impressive new tech, what’s the story for iOS 11? Here’s what we know so far.
When is the iOS 11 release date?
Although the public release of iOS 11 won’t be until a few days before new iPhones go on sale in September, Apple unveiled the new version on 5 June during the opening keynote to its WWDC event for developers. Then on 26 June 2017 it released the iOS 11 public beta. (You can enrol to get the iOS 11 beta here.)
Apple has on 10 July released the third developer beta to devs, so things are coming along nicely. New in beta 3 is a swipe up gesture for iPad users to close apps, tweaked behaviour to Cover Sheet Notification Centre and more, according to 9to5Mac. It says that there are no groundbreaking changes, but there is a handful of enhancements and tweaks,along with the usual performance and stability improvements.
What new features does iOS 11 have?
Apple announced a huge number of new features for iOS 11 during WWDC 2017. Many of the key features are only available for iPad, but there are still plenty of great improvements coming to the iPhone too.
iPad-only iOS 11 features
Apple launched the iPad Pro 2 during the keynote on 6 June, and also introduced a new 10.5in model to the series. It’s clear that with iOS 11 and the iPad Pro updates, the company is keen to focus on productivity and multitasking, bringing the iPad ever closer to a laptop alternative.
New in iOS 11 for iPad is the Files app. As the name suggests, it brings all of your files together into one easy to access and search space on your iPad. Organisation on an iPad is set to get a whole lot easier, and you can even access and organise files from other iOS devices, iCloud Drive and third-party services from the Files app too.
Additionally, the iPad is set to get a new Dock. It’ll be available from any screen in a similar fashion to the way it works on macOS. It’ll mean easier opening and switching apps, and it’s completely customisable too. Plus, it’s smart enough to be able to present you with apps it thinks you’re likely to need next.