back to article Apple frees iOS 4.3 two days before iPad 2 Arrival™

Apple has released the free iOS 4.3 update for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, goosing Safari's JavaScript performance, adding a handful of new features (not available on all models), and providing a flurry of security updates, all two days before it's set to appear on the iPad 2. Cupertino also rolled out Xcode 4, the …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    WiFi Enhancements?

    Basically they fixed what they broke with the 4.2.1 update, it seems. My iPad has been a nightmare on my WiFi network since the very minute I did the 4.2.1 update. Dropped connection, slow speeds and taking ages to connect to anything. Apple have never acknowledged the issue, and so many people seemed to experience it, I am amazed that The Register didn't pick up on it.

    Happy to say that 4.3 has fixed the issue that never was.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up

      Fixed battery drain

      This update seems to have also fixed the battery drain issues I've been having on my 3rd Gen Ipod Touch since it was upgraded to 4.1. If I left Wi-Fi on it would drain completely overnight. It was becoming quite a pain to turn it on every time I wanted to use it, then off again as soon as I'd finished.

  2. json

    2 hours to download!

    .. hotspot not really working ( I can do a traceroute from the wifi tethered device though) will tinker with it some more. Would have been really nice if:

    1) it can also share a wifi connection (wtf4? nothing just nice to have mainly for testing some stuff).

    2) there's a tool where we can easily change the 3g ie carrier connection default DNS settings. Carriers tend to run flaky DNS.

    on the otherhand, 4.3 does seem to make the iphone run faster.

    1. Chavdar Ivanov
      Thumb Up

      6 minutes download, another 5 or so to upgrade...

      Sun Spider total with 4.2.1 - 8325ms; with 4.3 - 3225ms.

      (on my three and a half year old ThinkPAD T61p Opera 11.01 gives me 376ms...).

  3. Steve Evans

    Not bad benchmarks...

    I (just for giggles) ran the spider on my standard HTC Desire Z running Android 2.2.1

    Standard browser: 7362.5ms +/- 2.5%

    Unfortunately neither Opera Mobile of Firefox4 beta on the phone can run it.

    It will be interesting to compare the results when HTC release the gingerbread update.

    1. An nonymous Cowerd
      Thumb Up

      sunspider on gingerbread

      I updated the iPad to 4.3 without problems, didn't notice *any* difference I must say.

      luckily as my OTA Gingerbread popped up this week I can give a sunspider0.9.1 result for my HTC Nexus One on Android 2.3.3 build GRI40

      Standard Browser 5304.9ms +/- 0.6%

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Original Desire w/Android 2.2

      5744.4ms +/- 2.8%

      1. Matt Siddall

        Original Desire on CyanogenMod

        Just because I was curious, very similar to stock 2.2:

        5712.6ms +/- 4.2%

        1. Steve Evans


          I'm feeling decidedly slow all of a sudden!

          Maybe I should do a reset, turn off lookout and give it another go.

  4. Ed


    Home sharing is my favourite feature, and it works well. AirPlay has promise, though I'm waiting for it to be supported by macs (Lion?)

    Google reader seems quite a bit faster with the safari improvements.

    1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Why wait?

      DNLA does it all already and isn't limited to Apple hardware.

  5. Chas


    "Xcode was previously free, by the way, bundled with Mac OS X installer discs or downloadable. But as we've said many time, Apple has never met a revenue stream it didn't like – like most companies."

    Register a free developer account and you can still download Xcode for free. Never let journalistic integrity get in the way of a good snarky comment, eh? No doubt we'll see the usual rabid anti-Apple brigade along shortly to heap yet more ill-informed vitriol on the head of Jobs.

    1. pantslessgibbon

      Check the details

      XCode 3 is free; however, the latest and greatest, XCode 4, is not. You either pay the $5 toll or sign up for the $99 per year plan. Maybe if you're going to have a snarky comment, perhaps you should research your opinion. Stop sign because it needs to.

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Jobs Halo

      To clarify

      The revenue stream in question consists of users too lazy and/or stupid to create a developer account. I fail to see the problem with taking economic advantage of these people.

    4. Anonymous Coward

      @ Free?

      No, the developer programs are $99/yr, which isn't a LOT, but it's definitely *NOT* Free!

    5. Anonymous Coward

      Fail back

      Have you got a free Apple Developer account? I do, but you need to be paid developer to get Xcode 4 for free, just as you had to be to download the Xcode 4 preview beta.

    6. DrXym Silver badge

      Charging money for tools

      Most phone OS tools are free - Windows Phone (& Visual Studio Express) are free, QT developer is free, Eclipse + Android SDK is free, WebOS SDK is free ... Apple SDK costs $$$.

      In the middle of a phone OS war you should be throwing dev tools around like candy.

      In the short term it probably makes no difference since Apple is sitting on top, but the world is changing fast. Charging money for tools which already require a huge outlay on a Mac is a great way to alienate curious developers and students. WP7 is almost as bad because the tools don't work on XP but at least it's free.

      1. DZ-Jay

        @Charging money for tools


        Your point is valid, but the curious developer and student can still download XCode 3 for free with just a free registration as an Apple Developer. The serious developer is required to pay for the latest version, but casual ones do not.


        1. vic 4

          XCode and iOS

          Even though you could get xcode 3X for free, you still need to hand over $99 for the iOS sdk to develop for iWhatever(tm) devices.

          1. Giles Jones Gold badge


            You can develop and test on the simulator for free. It is only when you want to test on the target device that you need a full blown account.

            1. vic 4

              You are right, I'm wrong

              You are right! When I first looked at getting into iphone development I could not find anywhere on apples sight to get xcode+ios sdk without joining the programme, should have looked harder :-(

      2. jai

        re: Charging money for tools

        valid point, but it seems where Apple goes, the others follow, so for how long with the dev tools for other systems remain free?

      3. Giles Jones Gold badge

        Not the first time

        Microsoft did the same, they used to offer free smartphone dev tools and then withdrew them only to re-instate them later on.

        Building dev tools costs money and takes time. It's always going to be a bit of a tricky decision for any company to give them away. On the one hand it can limit developer access to the tools, on the other hand it can bring in revenue to improve the tools. You can argue only serious developers would bother with the tools anyway?

  6. Tony Paulazzo
    Jobs Horns


    Fricking useless upgrade. Tried homesharing, didn't work, but wasn't running iTunes on the pc, so maybe that was why, haven't bothered troubleshooting yet since I use an app that streams any type film from pc to iPad without requiring iTunes at all (iTunes is an abomination that should be terminated with extreme prejudice on the pc), and most of my music's already on my HTC. I'm guessing homeshare is aimed more at the Apple multiple kit owning customers (I'm assuming having iTunes running all the time on a mac doesn't bring the system to its knees - kind'a like Flash does to the Mac...

    Flash still not working, nor WebGL, so less and less of the Internet available.

    Don't get me wrong, still loving my iPad, but hating Apple (and by extension Steve Jobs) more and more for consciously crippling what should (and could) be the best web surfing tablet on the market.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      iTunes isn't evil

      Yes - you'd be right in thinking you have to run itunes to be able to share from it.

      From Apple: "Home Sharing in iTunes is designed to let you stream and transfer music, videos, and more with up to five other computers on your local network."

      iTunes doesn't do anything nasty to my Windows 7 PC. It used to - maybe a few years ago - but nothing now. It just works (tm)

      Flash isn't meant to work, so why would it? Nor webgl? At least stick to moaning about stuff that's supposed to be in the update.

    2. Richard 116


      "Fricking useless upgrade. Tried homesharing, didn't work, but wasn't running iTunes on the pc, so maybe that was why"


    3. jai

      Found your problem

      "on the pc"

  7. pantslessgibbon

    Details incorrect

    The update does not include the iPhone 3G, and the hotspot feature is only functional for the iPhone 4.

  8. dpGoose

    I want to listen to my music again

    Hopefully they've fixed the car stereo compatibility problems introduced in 4.0

  9. Steve John

    Rotation lock switch

    is what I'm most pleased about. Using it as mute was pointless given there is a volume rocker right next to it.

  10. Anonymous Coward

    less than stellar cameras and video streams?

    1) Nothing wrong with the cameras

    2) video streams have nothing to do with iOS devices

    3) Airplay can be used with any films added to your device either purchased from iTunes or own mp4 files.

    4) Third party apps such as Air Video support AirPlay so you can stream any video from your PC/Mac/Linux box to an AppleTV via your iPhone/iPad/iPod.

  11. ceebee

    why no wifi hotspot for 3gs

    I really find the decision not to provide 3gs users the wifi hotspot a serious fail ... the much touted 4.3 is basically meaningless for 3gs users.... a few bug fixes and some slight speed improvement..but clearly aimed at pushing 3gs users to buy new phones.

    1. David Cantrell

      Pointless title, which must contain letters and/or digits.

      If you want to turn your 3GS into a wireless access point, then MyWi is what you need. But it's murder on the battery.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Bug Fixes

    ... are not listed on the site - just "Bug Fixes" !

    If it means my 3GS will allow me to make a call longer than 10 mins, it'll be worth it !

  13. Anonymous Coward

    Wifi Hotspot!

    Yay Apple! Once you actually get it working you'll be one step closer to catching up on Android's previous version.

    You must be so proud... :)

  14. Michael Wright


    >Due to Antennagate, we're waiting for iPhone 5.

    This is, of course, trolling. Please say it's trolling, otherwise I'll have to conclude you believe what you read on the net.

    The bridgeable external antennae are, of course, a stupid mistake on Apple's part (that is to say, His Jobsness's part). But the Consumer Reports article that was the first grown-up account of the problem also pointed out that most of the time, the wireless reception of the 4 was better than any previous iPhone.

    Upgrading every alternate generation is a pretty good strategy (I went from 3G to 4, and only really because my key app got "upgraded" and broke on the 3G), but please, please, the antennagate thing is just part of the troll-the-Apple-users-to-get-responses Vulture masterplan? Isn't it? I mean, by this point Jobs is probably determined that external antennae is one thing that won't change on the 5.

  15. LPF

    @James Greenhalgh

    Ummm have free acount and downloaded xcode 4 , did not pay anything , so ummm facts blah blah blah

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

      1. Giles Jones Gold badge

        ex-Paid developers only?

        Just log in and it is there under iOS. Perhaps it only appears to those who have paid for developer access in the past?

        1. Dave 142


          If that's the case I'm gonna get straight on there before they realise.

        2. This post has been deleted by its author

  16. johnnymotel
    Thumb Up

    MacPro bit slow?

    Just tried SunSpider on a MacBook Pro 2.8 core2duo.... 261.8ms +/- 0.9%.....bit quick eh? but then maybe my 256GB SSD helped ;)

  17. JDX Gold badge


    Bit chunky for an upgrade to a mobile OS isn't it?

    Also $4.99 may not be much and maybe you can get it free (it seems not though) but why sell your tool if you want to promote the Mac App Store rather than have people download the normal way?

  18. Logos

    about webkit...

    at the contrary of what's mentioned in the article I noticed that Safari is obviously much faster than before, very obviously, and for most sites.

  19. Spongibrain
    Gates Horns

    M$ want HOW MUCH for a copy of VS2010 Pro ?

    $549 last time I looked...

    No my free Mac Developer registration won't let me download XCode 4 for now't.

    The £3 pricetag is clearly designed to make it an impulse buy.

    Yes, that is an unwelcome price hike from £0

    But lets get some sense of perspective here ... its still a hell of alot cheaper than Macintosh Programmers Workshop, or even CodeWarrior for that matter

    1. Anonymous Coward


      Visual Studio 2010 Express = $0

      WebMatrix = $0

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Thumb Down

        RE: Err

        Xcode != Visual Studio Express or WebMatrix. Facts before you troll sonny jim m'lad...

      2. ebernet


        XCode 3 = $0

        What's your point?

        Just because the Express version of studio is free does not mean there is not a paid version, like Apple has. Only $549 is very different than $4.99

        The bigger argument I have is with this article categorically stating "Xcode was previously free, by the way, bundled with Mac OS X installer discs or downloadable".

        Last I looked, XCode is STILL bundled with Mac OS X installer disks, and there is no indication that the next version of Mac OS X won't come with XCode 4 nor that new hardware will not come with it (like iLife comes with a every Mac purchased). Upgrades often cost money, and at $4.99, I think that easily covers the cost of downloading. To me it is just a silly bitch session.

        Why not state, when complaining about the $99 price as a registered developer, that you get the $129 OS DVD image free as well? Makes that $99 seem like a bargain now, doesn't it??

  20. Hein-Pieter van Braam


    Still a heck of a lot more than Eclipse + gcc or (for the less fortunate) mingw...

    Apologizing much?

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Halo


    $4.99 is not a lot of cash for a professional development environment. As it happens I'm a registered developer so it's $99 for me. I easily make that with the Apps that I develop with it.

    Compare the price of MS development tools. No serious developer uses the free versions....

    1. Charlie Clark Silver badge
      Jobs Horns

      Not just for developers

      Quite a lot of stuff on MacPorts requires xCode to build - anything that uses Coacoa I think. Obviously, we're not supposed to be using none-Jobsian tools, though I for one like up to date posix stuff (openssl, etc.).

      USD 4.99 probably just covers billing for this so it's difficult to work out the logic behind it - just enough to piss people off so that the servers are not hammered or part of a more elaborate strategy around building up the garden walls. Are the days of `make install clean` on Mac OS numbered?

      After banning other runtimes are other GUI toolkits next on the list for Mac OS X?

      1. Ommerson

        The compilers are open source

        The tool-chain itself is either GCC or Clang - both of which are open source. You can always go and get them the old-fashioned way.

        Similarly MacOSX platform headers and libraries are where they always used to be - and where GCC and its ilk will be expecting them to find them, so you don't actually need to use the platform SDKs that come with XCode - but you won't be able to build for specific platform versions. This is probably fine for open sourcers.

  22. Andy E

    It's a disaster!

    I upgraded to iOS 4.3 on a 3GS iPhone and it all seemed to work OK. For some reason it's optimising my photo's at the moment which makes the MacBook Pro's two CPU's run at 100%.

    Despite all the new features seeming to work as it should, it is a personal disaster for me - Monopoly has been trashed and all the menu items are being shown in a hieroglyphic font or something similar to Microsofts Wingdings.

    For the first time I had actually managed to get ahead and put up two hotels. Now the game is lost and the app unplayable. I'm heartbroken.

  23. Mark .


    For a moment I thought they'd open sourced it. I get free updates on my Nokia all the time, not really news.

    I did tethering on my 6 year old cheap feature phone. Unless it means turning the phone into a Wifi router, but I thought that was common on high end phones these days too.

    I can't remember the last time I paid for a development environment. I think it was AMOS on the Amiga 15 years ago. (And good it was too - though I still think that the official SDKs should always be free, whether it was the Amiga back then, or Windows, Linux, Symbian and Android now.)

    DyXym: "In the short term it probably makes no difference since Apple is sitting on top,"

    I agree with your post, but this isn't true - Apple aren't on top. They're about 5th place in phone companies, and 3rd by "smartphone" OS share. The reason it makes no difference is because of the large companies that will churn out Iphone apps no matter what, whilst ignoring the more popular platforms.

    Spongibrain: MS give the Express versions away for free. And Qt for Symbian, and whatever SDK Android uses, are free (and open source).

  24. Dave 142


    XCode still doesn't have a FORTRAN compiler though.

  25. hexx

    f***k you o2!!!!

    so yeah, great feature that personal hotspot, apart from the fact that f****g o2 wants you to buy data bolt-on. what for???? i already pay for data allowance, it's part of my package. why the hell do i need to pay extra?

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Re: f***k you o2!!!!

      Seriously?? You didn't see this coming?? When it was first outed in the US on Verizon the word was that it was operator opt-in.. If it's that important to you, pay the £7 odd a month (and get the extra 500Mb of data) or jailbreak it and get MyWi..

      1. hexx


        'If it's that important to you, pay the £7 odd a month (and get the extra 500Mb of data) ' - i already pay for 500MB why do i need to pay for another 500MB I won't use?

  26. Wintermute
    Thumb Down

    4.99 is infinitely more than Zero

    If we had never had free dev tools on the Mac, then we'd have no reason to complain. But even for a few bucks vs zero pisses me off, and I'm probably not the only one who feels this way.

    Does Apple really want to fragment their developers, with some people opting to stay with the older and free V3 while others use V4? That's possible but not in Apple's best interests. And who's to say that 4.99 in the developing world is manageable? Argh.

  27. ratfox

    What terms?

    Is it $4.99 per installation on a Mac, or $4.99 per developer?

    I don't really get the need for this. This must really be a drop in the ocean for Apple as far as revenue is concerned...

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