With the release of Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) iOS 7.1 firmware on Monday, the mobile-device platform received its biggest update after the launch of the overhauled iOS 7 last September. And, though iOS 7.1’s version number suggests it to be a minor upgrade, the new firmware build includes many improvements, which took Apple a significant amount of time to put together.
Since last November, Apple has seeded five iOS 7.1 betas to its registered developers with almost every beta version containing tweaks in the user interface of the operating system. When the update finally rolled out Monday, it included multiple changes such as improvements to the Touch ID fingerprint scanner, the new CarPlay support and some bug fixes to name a few.
Ars Technica, which came up with a comprehensive review of iOS 7.1 on Tuesday, said that the update had brought considerable performance improvements to the OS. Here are some details from the report on the new iOS build that users will be interested to know about.
No Higher Benchmarks, Yet Faster
Although iOS 7.1 did not improve on benchmark results, it does make the device perform faster. For instance, the animation durations have been reduced. According to the Ars Technica report, the new firmware is “fluid and usable even on older Apple A5-based devices,” such as iPhone 4S, iPod Touch (fifth-generation) and the first-generation iPad Mini. However, users will obviously get an even better experience with an A7-powered device like the iPhone 5s.
Not Much Difference In Battery Life
The iOS 7.1 does not much affect the device's battery life, with the original iPad mini being the only device to get about 10 percent less battery life from a single charge. According to the report, users are likely to get the same battery life out of iOS 7.1 that they got from iOS 7.
Check out the chart here:
While Apple mentioned in the release notes that iOS 7.1 fixes a crashing issue reported by some iPhone 5s users, the company did not say anything about similar issues faced by users of the iPad Air and the iPad mini with retina display. According to Ars Technica, both 32-bit and 64-bit devices with the final build of iOS 7.1 installed have been “remarkably stable.”
Improvements For iBeacons
A report from 9to5Mac said on Tuesday that the iOS 7.1 update brought some changes to the way iBeacons, which is Apple’s Bluetooth LE beacon standard, interacts with iOS devices.
According to the report, devices running iOS 7.1 can now detect beacons even when an app is not open or running in the background, which is an important addition for developers rolling out iBeacon solutions. In addition, iOS 7.1 also brings significant improvements to responsiveness.
For more information about iOS 7.1 features and changes, click here.