iOS 17 is the next generation of Apple's operating system for the iPhone. It's likely to first be seen at WWDC 2023, with a full release alongside the iPhone 15 range later in the year.
Initial expectations were tame. Last year, iOS 16 saw quite a substantial suite of upgrades, which led many to believe that iOS 17 would be a small change by comparison.
As more and more leaks have emerged, though, that seems less likely. While there may not be a single headline change, there does appear to be a lot going on. Lets dive in and take a closer look.
When is iOS 17 being released?
There is no confirmed release date for iOS 17, but that doesn't mean we can't hazard a good guess. Apple, like most major tech companies, are creatures of habit, so the historic release information can give us a good idea of what could be coming.
Generally, the first glimpse of new iOS features is seen at the WWDC event each summer – it's taking place on the 5th of June this year. Then, the first public versions go live with the release of the new iPhone, which tends to be in September.
Which iPhones can use iOS 17?
Again, there's no official confirmation of which models are capable of carrying the new software. That doesn't stop us from making educated guesses, again based on historic patterns.
There is less rhyme and reason there, but it looks likely that support may drop for the iPhone 8, in line with leaked information. The iPhone X could also see the chopping block, according to that report, which makes sense – it was released around the same time as the 8, after all.
The good news, though, is that everything since then should remain compatible. That means that owners of the following devices should be able to access the new update:
- iPhone XR / iPhone XS / iPhone XS Max
- iPhone 11 / iPhone 11 Pro / iPhone 11 Pro Max
- iPhone SE (2nd Gen)
- iPhone 12 / iPhone 12 Mini / iPhone 12 Pro / iPhone 12 Pro Max
- iPhone 13 / iPhone 13 Mini / iPhone 13 Pro / iPhone 13 Pro Max
- iPhone SE (3rd Gen)
- iPhone 14 / iPhone 14 Plus / iPhone 14 Pro / iPhone 14 Pro Max
What new features will iOS 17 have?
While nothing has been officially confirmed, a lot of new features have been rumoured for iOS 17 from reputable sources.
Arguably the most interesting is a new journaling app, codenamed Jurassic. The app is touted as a boost for mental wellbeing, analysing data about how much time you spend at home and in the proximity of other people, as well as details of workouts and any outliers which may have affected your mood. Not much else is known about it, though it will likely support multimedia input for journaling, similar to other apps on the third-party market.
Another feature many are expecting is sideloading. That would give users the option of downloading apps from sources other than the App Store itself. It's a feature which Apple aren't especially keen on, but recent legislation from the EU may force their hand on the matter.
There have also been rumours of an update to the Wallet app. That would see sections implemented to separate passes and other tickets from your bank cards, for easier access.
Apple Maps also looks set to get a boost. According to rumours, users will be able to see live directions on their lock screen, meaning you won't have to unlock the device to check in on your journey. That could be a useful boost, bringing the important things to the fore when you need them.
Last, but not least, we've heard rumours of a change to the Control Centre. There's very little information on this one, but the biggest request from users here is customisation. General consensus seems to be that, whatever changes are implemented, customisable aspects will be at the heart of it.