Friday, Nov 19, 2021, 17:07 iOS: Software

Apple Releases iOS 15.1.1

It may take a few more weeks until the next "big" update to iOS arrives for us all. Apple is still beta testing iOS 15.2 – which should come with significant updates. In the meantime, however, Cupertino has released a small patch for iOS – without the usual beta cycle. As of Wednesday this week, iOS 15.1.1 has been available for download and installation. According to the release notes, the update is intended to remedy an issue specific to the iPhone 12 and 13. The same error doesn't appear to show up on older iPhones.

Interrupted Phone Calls
The release notes mention an improvement to "call drop performance" for the iPhone 12 and 13. Essentially, there should be fewer interrupted or abrupt ends to calls in conditions with poorer network quality. It's unclear how widespread the issue was and it's difficult to estimate. Although there were some complaints of calls mysteriously dropping on the official forums for the newer iPhones, there weren't any noticeably frequent reports overall. The patch probably tweaks the interplay between iOS and certain cellular providers, where bugs involving the interaction between the two were likely the cause of the issue. On Apple's forums, AT&T was mentioned multiple times with regards to call dropping on the two most recent iPhones.

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Update & Installation
The update can be downloaded and installed as usual in the Settings app using Apple's integrated system updater. It's also possible to install the update old school by connecting the iPhone to a Mac and undergoing the same process via the Finder window. However, there's no advantage to updating over the Mac in comparison to simply updating to the newest version of iOS via the iPhone. iOS 15.1.1's build number is 19B81 and as has been standard practice since 2010, Apple and cellular providers have been providing exact statistics for call drop frequency. This came about after the iPhone 4's "antenna gate" fiasco which sorted for a good deal of disruption due to the high number of dropped calls. However, with the help of the numbers, Apple was able to determine that the iPhone 4 actually performed just as well as its predecessors.

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