iOS 13: release date, leaks, rumours, and everything we think we know

The next version of Apple's mobile operating system is on the way

iPad Pro

iOS 12 has been the latest mobile OS on iPhones and iPads since it officially rolled out in September, but iOS 13 is on the horizon – and to make sure you're ready for the update, we're rounding up all the official news as well as the unofficial rumours here on this page.

Whether you want to know the iOS 13 release date, or the upcoming iOS 13 features, or the compatible devices that iOS 13 is going to work with, we've got all the info you need right here. Check back for regular updates as we get towards its official launch this September.

iOS 13: release date and compatible devices

iOS 13 news

iOS 12 launch

Apple tends to keep to the same script when it comes to pushing out the annual iOS refresh – the update usually appears in September alongside the new iPhones, and we expect the same schedule this year.

Before then though, we should get a sneak preview of what iOS 13 has to offer at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), which starts on June 3 this year. Apple usually gives us a taste of the new features on the way, and could well launch a beta release of the software as well, for those who are brave enough to try it.

As for device compatibility, Apple hasn't confirmed anything yet. Considering that every device that could run iOS 11 could also run iOS 12, this year might be the year some of the older hardware gets left behind – the iPhone 5S, the iPad Mini 2, and the original iPad Air from 2013, perhaps.

iOS 13: rumours and leaks

Even at this stage of the year, we're hearing a few pointers as to what iOS might bring with it in terms of features and improvements. For a start Apple TV+ has already been unveiled – the premium TV offering Apple has got in the pipeline.

We know that shows from the likes of Steven Spielberg, Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston are incoming, we just don't know when exactly they'll arrive or how much they're going to cost. iOS 13 could give us some answers.

One of the biggest leaks to date has come from sources speaking to 9to5Mac, revealing that an official dark mode switch will be part of iOS 13. Whether you want to reduce eye strain, save battery life, or just have a change of colours, iOS 13 should make it possible.

iOS 13 news

iOS 12

The same report says multitasking is going to be improved on the iPad, with apps able to run in separate windows – in other words, iOS 13 should blur the line between iPads and laptops even further.

Also for the iPad, we're hearing that Safari will render desktop versions of sites if needed, and that a system-wide undo feature is going to be implemented too. Again, the idea is to help distinguish between iPhone and iPad.

Other improvements that have been mooted include better message categorisation and a 'read it later' service in Mail, and the inclusion of new gestures across the OS to make it easier to select groups of items.

On top of that, we're hearing that the volume management system is going to be upgraded (it's about time), and that iOS 13 is going to include a revamped Reminders app too – a revamp that should make its way to the next version of macOS as well.

An earlier tip off by Bloomberg suggests that Apple is planning to change up the iOS and CarPlay home screens, but as yet we don't have any idea what the mooted redesign might actually look like. The Files app has been tipped for an upgrade too, but again details are thin on the ground at the moment.

iOS 13 news

Find My iPhone

Another new feature we've heard about, as MacRumors reports, is a new tracker service that combines Find My Friends and Find My iPhone. New hardware might appear as well, in the form of small tags to track your gadgets.

Expect more iOS apps to make the switch to macOS this year as well, part of Apple's ongoing efforts to get its mobile and desktop operating systems working better together. This already started last year and should continue.

New emoji including kites and sloths should appear in iOS 13 as well, though these emoji will be making their way to other apps and OSes too – the emoji set is managed by the Unicode Consortium rather than Apple, Google or Microsoft.

iOS 13 what we want to see

As you can see above, we've heard plenty of rumours about new features in iOS 13, covering everything from the design of the home screen to the way you can sort though messages in Mail.

There's likely plenty more in the pipeline as well though, and we should see more at WWDC in June, when it's also likely that Apple will announce the beta program for iOS 13.

iOS 13 news

iOS 12

Take the camera app for example: it hasn't been seriously upgraded in a while, and it's starting to look a little dated. Any new photo-taking features could be helped by the addition of an extra camera lens on the iPhone 11.

A few more customisation options would be welcome in iOS 13 too, something where iOS has always lagged behind Android. Tweaks to widgets and the Control Centre could be on the cards this year.

If you think about the features that were introduced with iOS 12, like Screen Time and Siri Shortcuts, Apple will no doubt take the opportunity to refine these further – making sure they work smarter and are more intuitive to use.

iOS 13 news

iOS 12

Considering how hard Apple has pushed the various health and fitness features in iOS in recent years, we're hoping for more improvements here as well.

Apple updates all its iOS apps at once of course, and we think there's room for improvements in apps like Apple Maps and the default Contacts and Calendar apps as well – areas where Google continues to push forward and innovate.