iOS 7 Beta 4 Showing Much Improvement

the freshly released Beta 4 update to the iOS 7 program has brought a few new bugs along the way, one being an especially annoying one that’s killed inline remote control for most non-Apple headsets. however, this is a simple issue and the positives far outweigh the negatives.

Beta 4 has seemingly reined in previous issues with battery life and resource hogging. specifically, battery life is nearing that of the current iOS 6.1.4 once all of the location based additions to iOS 7 are turned off. memory usage also matches iOS 6 which is probably what’s leading to the boost in battery life. Beta 3 and previous iterations were memory hogs, consuming all but 300MB of system RAM. Beta 4, if system apps are working properly, shows it using less than 500MB once all extraneous apps are closed and the device rebooted.

of course, one could argue that turning off all of the new location based features negates much of the advantages of iOS 7, but that’s the reality with current battery technology and GPS power requirements. eventually, technology will catch up but it may be some time. really though, do you really need to let everyone on earth know where you’ve been and where you’re potentially going to be every minute of the day?

what’s left seems to be limited to unifying the interface. the onscreen keyboard I’m using in the WordPress app is based on iOS 6’s design. maybe it’s a matter of developers updating their apps or maybe it’s a UI hook that’s yet to be updated by the Apple team, either way, something as basic as the keyboard look has yet to be changed. these issues are merely cosmetic and will surely advance as the beta matures. I think the most important detail for casual users will be the icons, as they will need tuning up to maintain consistency across the UI, but more importantly, properly reflect their functions as some of them are pretty abstract and not immediately recognizable. I refer you to the Game Center icon as a prime example.

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