Apple changing how future OS’s will be built

RECTANGLE apple changing nternal testing system 3

In a brand new report by Bloomberg, it has been revealed that Apple will change the way iOS 14 and future OS’s will be tested and developed after the bugs and issues in iOS 13, Bloomberg reports:

Software chief Craig Federighi and lieutenants including Stacey Lysik announced the changes at a recent internal “kickoff” meeting with the company’s software developers. The new approach calls for Apple’s development teams to ensure that test versions, known as “daily builds,” of future software updates disable unfinished or buggy features by default. Testers will then have the option to selectively enable those features, via a new internal process and settings menu dubbed Flags, allowing them to isolate the impact of each individual addition on the system.

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Getty Images, Justin Sullivan

With the release of iOS 13, complaints have been vast, from cellular, battery life, mail, messages, 3rd party apps, camera bugs and more.

The new development process will help early internal iOS versions to be more usable, or “livable,” in Apple parlance. Prior to iOS 14’s development, some teams would add features every day that weren’t fully tested, while other teams would contribute changes weekly. “Daily builds were like a recipe with lots of cooks adding ingredients,” a person with knowledge of the process said. 

Bloomberg goes on to state how Apple determines the quality of releases,

Apple measures and ranks the quality of its software using a scale of 1 to 100 that’s based on what’s known internally as a “white glove” test. Buggy releases might get a score in the low 60s whereas more stable software would be above 80. iOS 13 scored lower on that scale than the more polished iOS 12 that preceded it. Apple teams also assign green, yellow and red color codes to features to indicate their quality during development. A priority scale of 0 through 5, with 0 being a critical issue and 5 being minor, is used to determine the gravity of individual bugs.

Bloomberg notes how these changes will affect not only iOS but including watchOS and macOS after the release of macOS Catalina which saw reports of apps not working, and performance issues, pushing Apple to release patches almost on a weekly basis for the software.

The testing shift will apply to all of Apple’s operating systems, including iPadOS, watchOS, macOS and tvOS. The latest Mac computer operating system, macOS Catalina, has also manifested bugs such as incompatibility with many apps and missing messages in Mail. Some HomePod speakers, which run an iOS-based operating system, stopped working after a recent iOS 13 update, leading Apple to temporarily pull the upgrade. The latest Apple Watch and Apple TV updates, on the other hand, have gone more smoothly. 

Apple leadership is hopeful these changes will mean better, less buggy future releases, not only for this year’s release but also future long terms plans.

It’s worth noting an Apple spokesperson declined to comment, with the report adding that the source stated users had to go days, sometimes weeks without proper working software, with the end goal of these changes to allow “Apple engineers {to} check how the operating system was reacting to many of the new features, leading to some of iOS 13’s problems.”

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Sami
Sami started falling in love with Apple in 2010 with the iPhone 4S. As a registered developer, he deeply admires the world of Apple. Sami is an aspiring journalist, writer, and actor. He also has devoted his life to sharing his passion and knowledge with others around the world.