What is iOS 12

Mobile & apps

In its last update round, Apple made a lot of software available: iOS 13.3, iPadOS 13.3, tvOS 13.3, macOS Catalina 10.15.2, watchOS 6.1.1, Xcode 11.3, Safari 13.0.4, security updates for Mojave and High Sierra . The previous version of iOS 13 also appeared somewhat surprisingly in the update list: iOS 12.4.4 did not bring any new functions after the release notes, the developers only closed a security hole in Facetime. However, the loophole was serious: a prepared video, played back at Facetime, can lead to malicious code being executed on the iPhone. Such holes are good for installing spy software.

But if you look into the past, you can see that even after the 19th of September, the launch of iOS 13, Apple released at least two more updates to iOS 12: On September 26th - iOS 12.4.2. This point version has a gap that is comparable to the one currently being remedied by Facetime: malicious software could lead to the program being terminated and then execute arbitrary code.

Another update took place on October 28th to iOS 12.4.3, Apple has certainly closed loopholes, in the overview article of the security updates only briefly said: "More details will follow". This in itself is not unusual, sometimes Apple updates the list with closed gaps weeks later with new entries. As I said, the latest update was yesterday, so Apple has updated the previous system every month after the start of iOS 13.

Most of the iPhones already use iOS 13

Why do the developers go to the trouble and carry along with them, so to speak, "legacy"? With the desktop OS this is understandable, users sometimes wait months before they switch to the latest system, with iOS it is rather the other way round, with a large number of users already joining the public beta. One month after the update, Apple can report that 80 percent or more of all active users have switched to the latest version.

The App Store page at Apple Developer gives a good insight: The manufacturer currently reports that around 55 percent of all active users from the App Store use iOS 13 and newer, 38 percent are still on iOS 12, and only 7 percent are on earlier versions . If you leaf through the past, you can see: On December 3, 2018, around 72 percent were on iOS 12, 21 percent on iOS 11 and 7 percent on older iOS versions. A year earlier on December 4, 2017, 59 percent of users were on iOS 11, 33 percent on iOS 10 and eight percent on older versions. A year earlier on November 27, 2016, 63 percent of all users had switched to iOS 10, 29 percent were still on iOS 9 and 8 percent stayed on the older systems. On December 14, 2015, 71 percent of users switched to iOS 9, 21 percent stayed on iOS 8, and 8 percent went to older versions.

Support for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus

You can see from the numbers: iOS 12 was adopted extremely quickly by users compared to the other operating system versions and remains popular now: iOS 9 was adopted comparatively quickly, but iOS 10 replaced its predecessor relatively painlessly after a year. The fact that iOS 12 is being used so widely even after a year (38 percent has not yet reached any of the versions) is probably due to the fact that this is the latest operating system available for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. The models came on the market in 2014 and were, above all, one thing - big and bigger.

According to estimates, the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus remain the best-selling iPhone models of all time: Apple probably sold around 220 million of them. Bendgate news aside, most of those iPhones sold are still around.

Apple would probably have a difficult choice after iOS 13.1 at the latest: Either you leave iOS 12 and hundreds of millions of iPhone users are exposed to the security gaps - which probably prompts some of them to carry out a jailbreak. Or you maintain the old system and hope that the iPhones will gradually come out of circulation. At the moment it is difficult to say whether this will happen so quickly. But even now one can say with certainty that Bendgate was mighty exaggerated: After five years of use at the latest, most iPhones should be bent, dented and defective. (Macworld)