On Monday, Apple seeded the fourth beta of its iOS 10.3 software update to developers and public testers. The final version of 10.3 should be rolled out to the public in a few weeks, possibly coinciding with Apple’s rumored March event. Registered developers and public testers can download the fourth beta from the Apple Developer Center or over the air.
What’s new in the fourth beta?
The latest beta brings minor improvements and bug fixes. Developers who tested the iOS 10.3 beta 4 told VentureBeat that the new version feels smoother than the earlier versions. There are redesigned wallpapers as well as new emojis in the activity, food & drink, and travel & places categories. The option to disable in-app reviews and ratings has now been moved to Settings > iTunes & App Store > Apple ID.
The iOS 10.3 is said to be the last major update to Apple’s mobile operating system before the official announcement of iOS 11 at WWDC in June. The 10.3 brings a new Apple File System (APFS) that replaces the older HFS+ file system. The APFS offers strong encryption, and is fully optimized for flash/SSD storage. Other features include an alert that 32-bit apps won’t work with future iOS versions. It also brings CarPlay improvements, and WiFi calling for Verizon customers on iCloud-connected devices.
iOS 10.3 is a major update
The update would bring a new feature called Find My AirPods that would help users locate the lost AirPod. It keeps track of the last known location of the AirPods, and causes the lost earphone to make a sound. Apple has also improved the App Store to let developers seek reviews within the app. Developers can now respond to customer reviews in the App Store. The update also allows users to label reviews as Helpful and Not Helpful.
Siri on the iOS 10.3 will be able to show cricket scores from Indian Premier League and International Cricket Council (ICC) cricket matches. Apple has also redesigned the app open/close animation. Last week, Apple revealed that iOS 10 adoption had jumped 79% in just five months. According to the App Store data, the iOS 9 is still installed on 16% of active devices, while the remaining 5% run older iOS versions.
Apple seeds watchOS 3.2 fourth beta to testers
The Cupertino company has also seeded the fourth beta of watchOS 3.2 to developers. The watchOS 3.2 introduces new features like SiriKit and Theater Mode. The new Theater Mode disables waking the display when you raise your wrist. It also mutes the sound, though you’ll still get notifications with haptics. If you want to view the notifications, simply press the digital crown or tap the screen.