Apple releases iOS 6.1, adds LTE carriers, tweaks security
Also teaches Siri to spend US users' money on Fandango tix
Apple has released iOS 6.1, which adds LTE support for more carriers worldwide, but not much more in terms of features for a release that's graced with a full "dot-digit" numerical upgrade.
"Apple today updated iOS to version 6.1, adding LTE capabilities to 36 additional iPhone carriers and 23 additional iPad carriers around the world," the company said in a release announcing the update, and Cook & Co. have helpfully upgraded their lists of supported LTE networks for the iPhone and iPad to reflect those additions.
Also included in the update are a number of security improvements that make it worth the download, including kernel, Identity Services, WebKit, and StoreKit tweaks, plus the closing of Broadcom Wi-Fi vulns in the iPhone 3GS and 4, fourth-gen iPod touch, and iPad 2. That pesky Turktrust security cock-up has also been addressed.
Feature-wise, iOS 6.1 updaters will now be able to download individual songs from iTunes Match accounts, and US users will be able to use Siri to buy movie tickets through Fandango – that is, of course, if Siri can understand you when you mumble "Jab Tak Hai Jann".
As with all iOS updates, you can use either iTunes or your iDevice itself to download the latest operating system. Unless you have plenty of time on your hands, however, we highly recommend using your iPhone or iPad itself to do the deed. Here's the size of the iOS 6.1 update as reported by iTunes:
And here it is when we accessed it through Settings > General > Software Update on our iPhone 5:
You'll also notice that you'll need at least 1GB of free storage space to complete the update process; you can clear that much either by tapping the Usage Settings button and deleting some apps on the listing that appears, or by going back to iTunes to delete tunes, videos, or other items. Caveat updator, as the Romans used to say.
After you update your device, and if you're an iCloud user, you'll also need to re-enter your iCloud password. There are also three new security questions to invent, and you'll need to add a recovery email address and respond to the standard pain-in-the-hiney email account-verification process.
Speaking of security questions, your humble Reg reporter's first car was a Pontiac Bonneville; what was yours? ®
I HATE THESE DAMN SECURITY QUESTIONS!
I'm glad Rik referred to how stupid this is in a cleverly oblique way, though I wish we'd see an entire Reg article dedicated to this abomination.
Most of us who read The Reg are probably clueful enough to realize how stupid it would be to give truthful answers to these security questions, but the average person doesn't realize how insecure this is. This might have seemed like a good solution to the problem of identifying yourself on the web for relatively unimportant sites at first, but it has taken on a life of its own since. The ability to easily search the web for names as well as the propensity of people to give away "unimportant" information to Facebook makes this far more dangerous than using a dictionary word as a password.
But once something is deemed a "best practice" in security it lives forever like some sort of zombie. Much like the outdated idea that changing your password frequently is a good idea, these "three security questions" continue to be used everywhere. Presumably anyone actually working in the industry knows this is dumb, but I know from experience in my consulting work that no matter how smart and well regarded you are in your field, you can't fight "best practices" with your recommendations. You can recommend something, someone will point out it contradicts best practices, and you can explain why best practices are wrong in this case until you're blue in the face, but in the end you are forced to give in if you want to get anything accomplished aside from discussing this one issue.
THEY RELEASE THE UPDATE
And all iDevices get it there and then!
Android brings out an update....... Er how long will you have to wait for it?
Re: THEY RELEASE THE UPDATE
So bored of fanboys. On both sides. Grow up.
Of course Android updates take longer to filter out, there are hundreds if not thousands of different device configurations maintained by many different manufacturers. As oppose to <10 configurations all with similar hardware made by 1 manufacturer. http://www.android.com/devices/