In a move underscoring its commitment to software excellence, Apple’s head of software engineering, Craig Federighi, recently temporarily paused development of the company’s next major software updates, including iOS 18, according to Bloomberg. report. This rare move was driven by the need to resolve quality issues in initial versions of the software.
iOS 18 is especially important for Apple as it strives to match Google And OpenAI in terms of generative AI. With no major breakthroughs expected on the iPhone 16 hardware, Apple is counting on its software to attract new users.
Strategic development pause
This cautious approach led to a pause in development work on iOS 18, as well as other operating systems such as iPadOS 18 and macOS 15. Engineers had a week dedicated solely to debugging and improving performance, a strategy that hasn’t been used since 2019, when Apple revamped its development processes due to bugs and feature delays in new iPhone launches.
Last month, Apple finalized the first internal versions of iOS 18 and macOS 15, a critical step in their development. This stage, called M1, generally precedes the move to the next stage of development, M2. The debug break delayed the start of M2 development but bought an extra week to work out bugs.
Impact on release schedule
The week-long hiatus is unlikely to significantly delay the final release of the software. At most, it could reduce the time needed to eliminate end-stage problems. However, it demonstrates Apple’s commitment to the high quality standards set by Federighi’s policy, The Pact, which emphasizes immediately resolving any regressions caused by new features.
Apple’s software updates for 2024 are looking more ambitious, with senior management calling them “ambitious and compelling.” These updates will likely bring important new features and designs, as well as security and performance improvements.
Ensuring reliability and performance
For Apple, the true appreciation of these innovative features will depend on their flawless functionality. This pause reflects Apple’s desire to ensure that its software is as robust and reliable as the new features it introduces.