iOS 7.1.1 Released: Bug Fixes, Security Improvements, and New Labels for Apps with In-App Purchases

App Store In-App Purchases

Apple released iOS 7.1.1 yesterday, the latest update to the iPad and iPhone operating system. This update to iOS brings bug fixes and some security enhancements. It also has improvements to the Touch ID feature for iPhone – which is expected to come to this year’s iPad models.

Another interesting addition in this update, spotted by MacRumors, is a new label on apps with In-App purchases – in the Top Charts listings pages. It’s a fairly tiny bit of text just underneath the Free button in the apps listing.

Given all the controversy around ‘Freemium’ games with sometimes very large In-App purchases (I’ve seen up to $99) and horror stories of kids running up bills into the thousands of dollars, any extra labeling of these apps is a good idea. I’d love to see the label text be a little larger and more prominent.

iOS 7.1.1 is available now as an over-the air update via Settings > General > Software Update.

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“Quitting Apps in iOS Can Actually Worsen Battery Life” – If This is Accurate, then It’s the Best Advert Yet for More RAM in iOS Devices

iPad Multitasking

Thorin Klosowski has a piece up at Lifehacker where he states that quitting apps in iOS can actually worsen battery life – and quotes a former Apple Genius Bar tech on the subject:

Yes, it does shut down the app, but what you don’t know is that you are actually making your battery life worse if you do this on a regular basis. Let me tell you why.

By closing the app, you take the app out of the phone’s RAM . While you think this may be what you want to do, it’s not. When you open that same app again the next time you need it, your device has to load it back into memory all over again. All of that loading and unloading puts more stress on your device than just leaving it alone. Plus, iOS closes apps automatically as it needs more memory, so you’re doing something your device is already doing for you. You are meant to be the user of your device, not the janitor.

I don’t feel 100% sure that his premise is right, and browsing through the comments thread I’m not the only one with doubts on it.

And even if the premise is right, then to me it’s just an excellent confirmation of why iOS devices desperately need more RAM. I don’t get any great joy out of being my iPad’s ‘janitor’ – but I sure as heck know that I *need* to be its janitor on a regular basis when it comes to managing memory. That is if I want apps to be able to refresh pages properly. Or to prevent apps freezing up. There are numerous times per week where I need to close out a ton of apps in order to allow one app to run correctly.

Seriously, biggest wish list item for the iPad 6 or whatever this year’s model will be: RAM. Lots of it.

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iOS 7.0.6 for iPad Released – Security Update

iOS 706

Yesterday Apple issued the latest update to the iPad and iPhone operating system, iOS 7.0.6. This update is primarily a security patch for a known vulnerability relating to SSL connections.

The update is available now and can be installed over-the-air (as in, directly from the iPad) via the Settings app. You’ll find it under Settings > General > Software Update.

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Apple Says Fix Coming for iOS 7 Home Screen Crashes – It’s About Time

Springboard Crash

If you’ve been using iOS 7 for any length of time, then you’re likely aware that it’s prone to pretty frequent crashes at random times. This has been the case ever since the late developer betas and certainly since iOS 7 was released to the public.

I think it’s the most buggy release of iOS since iOS 2.0 – and I’ve definitely see plenty of the Springboard reset type soft reboots on my Retina iPad mini on a regular basis.

The good news is it looks like there may be an update on the way to at least partly address the issue, according to Mashable.

“We have a fix in an upcoming software update for a bug that can occasionally cause a home screen crash,” Apple spokesperson Trudy Muller told Mashable.

9to5Mac also reports that feedback from people using the latest iOS 7.1 beta indicates that it is ‘more stable and less prone to crashes’.

Lets hope we see a stability boosting iOS 7 update very soon.

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Facebook Sign In on iOS Demands Too Much

Facebook account iOS

The screenshot above is of the advisory popup dialog you get when you’re about to sign in with your Facebook account in the iPad Settings app – to link your Facebook account more seamlessly throughout iOS.

Here’s the big catch though: the dialog above lets you know that signing in will do this:

Download your Facebook friends to the Contacts app and keep their information up to date.

For me, that’s a deal breaker right away. I don’t want all my Facebook friends chucked into my Contacts app. Partly because the last time I recall using some clever app that brought Facebook friends into my address book it made a huge mess – resulting in contacts with wrong phone numbers and similar issues.

Also, there are a lot of my Facebook friends who I really only ever communicate with via Facebook. Old friends who live half a world away for example. For most of them, I don’t know their phone number or sometimes even their email address. I talk to them via Facebook messages or maybe an occasional Skype call. Contacts to me is a place for family, friends, work colleagues, numbers for frequently used services and so forth.

I know this clearly a ‘first world problem’ type complaint and not worth getting knickers in a twist over, but I wish Facebook would make this optional – as Twitter does with a similar sort of feature. Then those who find this useful could go ahead and bring their Facebook friends into Contacts; and people like me could agree to sign in to Facebook – because I can’t at the moment.

Update: My mistake on this on; I didn’t read the fine print properly. As a few people have pointed out in the comments, you can disable the Contacts sync (and Calendar sync) once you sign in – with just a quick tap on toggle buttons. Apologies for my error on this.

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