iOS 12 rumor roundup: Release date, new features, and more

The next new operating system for iPhone and iPad will be iOS 12. That means, right after iOS 11 was released, Apple's product marketing and software engineering teams began working to figure out what iOS 12 needed to be. Since Apple doesn't pre-announced new features before they go into beta, all we have to look forward to between now and WWDC 2018 in June are rumors and speculation.

Here they are.

January 30, 2018: New Home screen, CarPlay UI, Mail app 'delayed' so iOS 12 can be more about the bug fixes

Every iOS release is a battle for resources between improving what came before and adding what comes next. Looks like iOS 12 might firmly fall into the "fix it" camp:

From Axios:

Apple has shaken up its iOS software plans for 2018, delaying some features to next year in an effort to put more focus on addressing performance and quality issues, Axios has learned.

Pushed into 2019 are a number of features including a refresh of the home screen and in-car user interfaces, improvements to core apps like mail and updates to the picture-taking, photo editing and sharing experiences.

Improvements to ARKit, Parental Controls, and health features are still said to be on track.

This part is more curious:

While a renewed focus on quality and performance might ease some outside criticism, some inside the team question whether the approach will actual lead to higher quality.

If the report is accurate, that could be interpreted as suggesting someone isn't happy about the decision, and could possibly explain the source of the leak. If so, factor sour grapes into the credibility of the information.

If Apple is doing this, it's partially to fix the narrative that software quality has declined in recent years. It'll be interesting to see if it manages to alter that perception, or just feed into the narrative that Apple isn't innovating fast enough.

"Fix iOS... but give me my new Home screen first!"

When will we see iOS 12?

WWDC 2017

Assuming that Apple keeps to its previous patterns, it will show off iOS 12 for the first time during the keynote for the 2018 World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC). Tim Cook will introduce iOS 12, while Craig Federighi, Senior Vice President of Software Engineering, will go through its different tentpole features.

It's likely that the first developer beta of iOS 12 will be made available the same day as the presentation. As with the last few iterations of iOS, a public beta should follow later in the summer. The public launch of iOS 12 will likely take place at some point in fall 2018.

What do you want to see in iOS 12?

With iOS 12 over a year away at this point, there's not a lot that we've heard about it. iOS 11 is still in beta, for crying out loud! But that doesn't mean that we can't think about what Apple's got coming down the pipe. Do you think we'll finally get that system-wide dark mode? What about new iPad features? Let us know what you would like to see in iOS 12 in the comments.

I'd still love a dark theme in iOS 12

I'd love lock screen complications in iOS 12

Apple Rumors: Here's what we know