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iOS 9 release date rumours: iOS 9 'already being publicly tested'

David Price | Jan. 30, 2015
iOS 8 has been with us for a couple of months, but we're already thinking about iOS 9. When will it come out, what features will it offer and which iPads, iPhones and iPod touch devices will it run on?

Our colleague Jim Martin also demands that the Wi-Fi SSID should be shown in Control Centre so that you can swipe up and quickly check which network you're connected to, instead of having to jump into Settings to sort it all out. Good idea, Jim.

You could even add frequently used apps (or settings for those apps) to the Control Centre, or harmless kid-friendly games you don't mind being accessible without inputting a passcode.

iOS 9 features wishlist: 10. Local Siri

The problem with Siri (other than self-consciousness when you're using it in a busy area) is that it sends every voice command back to HQ for decoding by Apple's back-end servers, which means it doesn't work when disconnected from the internet.

Surely the easier stuff - setting reminders and alarms, and firing off text messages - could be handled locally? This would be a great help when driving home with no mobile signal and trying to send a hands-free message ("I'm running late!") to a spouse.

iOS 9 features wishlist: 11. Home screen widgets

With iOS 8 Apple cautiously opened up to the idea of user customisation, allowing third-party system-wide keyboards and - yes - widgets to be installed (although Apple calls them Extensions). These are miniature versions of apps that sit in the Notification Screen and perform limited functions.

iOS 9 wishlist: Widgets

This is all great, but it would better still if we could install the widgets in other places - such as on the Home screen itself, which is where widgets found fame on Android. Having a weather widget constantly sitting in the background of the Home screen could be handy, as could a sports news ticker.

iOS 9 features wishlist: 12. Smaller file when upgrading iOS

This one, I'm afraid, is a little bit like the non-specific request for a better battery life. We'd just like the install file, when we upgrade from one version of iOS to another, to be smaller. We don't know the details, and we don't care how - we just want it to be smaller.

Yes, it's non-specific, and yes, it's probably incredibly annoying to hear if you're a software developer at Apple. But given the amount of storage available to the average iOS device - and remember that iOS is developed for Apple devices only, so this is a totally controllable environment - it is unacceptable that iOS 8 demanded 5GB or even 6GB in order to update. Many users had to clear all of the media and most of the apps from their devices, and many more didn't update because they didn't want to do this - and a mixed-OS user base is the last thing Apple wants.

 

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