In a surprise for industry watchers concerned about iOS 8’s recurring connectivity issues, Apple released iOS 8.3 for beta testing, apparently with the connectivity bugs still being ironed out in iOS 8 unresolved. The new update adds a variety of new features to the operating system, while iOS 8.2 Beta 5 is focusing on taking care of the actual bugs related to connectivity and a particularly obnoxious bug in the calendar which synchronized users to Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) instead of their home time.
The biggest feature being touted by Apple is undoubtedly the CarPlay Suite, which will allow users to pair devices between their iPhone and a headset that is connected to the vehicle. The Suite will allow full interoperability between the phone and vehicle, including the use of Siri. Previous versions of CarPlay were for wired connectivity. The new version will be designed for wireless pairing with a wide variety of iPhone models. Meanwhile, a new version of the App Store will be released that will make ground-breaking improvements in its operation. Finally, iOS 8.3 will have an easier version of two-form verification with Google, making it even more attractive to Google power users.
While iOS 8.3 has a number of ground-breaking features in beta stage, the problems which have plagued iOS 8.2 have not clearly been resolved. Bluetooth remains spotty, and worse still, one of the most irritating bugs that users have discovered– WiFi connections consistently and repeatedly dropping for no reason, have not been fully resolved in the fifth beta of iOS 8.2. The final release for 8.2 should be in April, and it’s hopeful that the bugs will be worked out by then. Until they are, the problems that plague iOS 8.2 will likely also affect its successor, which is bad news for Apple.
Verdict: iOS 8.3 has some great features, but if iOS 8.2 isn’t fixed, users won’t care.