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Saturday, October 1, 2022

Apple iOS 15.0.1 Release: Should You Upgrade?

Apple iOS 15 is an (unexpected) dumpster fire and, as predicted, iOS 15.0.1 has now been released to put out some of the flames. Unfortunately, the fix list is short, the fixes themselves are unreliable and iOS 15 is still a big mess. Here’s everything you need to know.  

Tip: bookmark this page because I will keep it up to date if/when new problems are found. I will deliver my final verdict in a week.  

MORE FROM FORBESApple iOS 15 Warnings Issued For All iPhone Users

Who Is It For?

Apple iOS 15.0.1 has been released for all iOS 14-compatible devices. This includes the iPhone 6S (now six years old) and newer. You should be automatically notified to upgrade but, if not, you can trigger the update manually by navigating to Settings > General > Software Update. If you are running the current iOS 15.1 beta (see ‘The Road Ahead’ section at the end), you must unenroll your iPhone first before iOS 15.0.1 will show up.

Note: this guide is not focused on older iOS updates or iPadOS, but I will touch upon pertinent issues in these guides. 

The Deal Breakers

Jailbreakers, stay away. Nothing has changed in many months and Unc0ver and checkra1n are yet to crack the later iOS 14 releases let alone iOS 15. That said, given the troubled start iOS 15 has had, jailbreak fans have arguably got off lucky to stay where they are. 

For everyone else, I’m sorry to say the first 24 hours don’t look good. iOS 15.0.1 only promises to fix three things (despite numerous ongoing issues) and yet two of the three (storage capacity reporting and unlocking via the Apple Watch) are proving unreliable (1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10 etc). Worse still, while there are some reports of the fixes working, there are isolated reports of iOS 15.0.1 introducing these bugs for users who didn’t have them before. 

While it is not an enviable task prioritizing which of all the iOS 15 bugs to address first, I’m also surprised that Apple has not made any attempt to fix the (seemingly widespread) CarPlay problems people are having. Understandably, a backlash is growing towards iOS 15 in general with users describing it as “riddled with problems” and “a buggy disaster”. 

So What Do You Get?

As mentioned above, Apple iOS 15.0.1 does not fix a lot (nor does it fix them reliably) but these are the official release notes: 

  • Unlock iPhone with Apple Watch may not work on iPhone 13 models
  • Settings app may incorrectly display an alert that storage is full
  • Audio meditations could unexpectedly start a workout on Apple Watch for some Fitness+ subscribers

Apple has been similarly unreliable with the security in iOS 15.0.1. Officially Apple states iOS 15.0.1 contains no security fixes but it does. One researcher who reported a critical zero-day lock screen vulnerability was surprised to find it is fixed in the release without Apple giving him any credit (or, presumably, bug finders’ bounty). 

Moreover, Apple has not included any fixes for the three zero-day hacks made public last week after another security researcher lost patience with the company failing to acknowledge the flaws for over four months. At this point, serious concerns are growing about how Apple is working with security researchers who provide such a critical role in finding flaws and keeping iOS safe. 

Apple iOS 15.0.1 Verdict: Upgrade If You Are Already Running iOS 15

iOS 15.0.1 feels rushed and unreliable. If you have installed iOS 15 and are suffering from any of the three bugs it claims to fix, then there is no harm in updating and seeing it if works for you. The (unacknowledged) zero-day bug fix is also a big deal. Despite this, anyone still waiting happily on iOS 14, should probably hold off. I would expect a quick fire series of releases with iOS 15.0.2 first, followed by a larger iOS 15.1 update that is already in development (more below). 

Note: bookmark this guide, I will continue to update it with any relevant flaws or features I find and you will find my final verdict here in one week. 

The Road Ahead 

Earlier this week, Apple released the second beta of iOS 15.1 which should be a more substantial release with a more significant number of bug and security fixes. It will also introduce some of the new features which didn’t make the iOS 15 launch, such as SharePlay

iOS 15.1 is still likely to be more than a month away, with iOS 15.0.2 and iOS 15.0.3 likely to be needed before then. My hope is iOS 15.1 will prove to be a good starting point for those patiently waiting on iOS 14. Afterall, there’s a lot to like about iOS 15 …when it works. 


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