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Apple explains why there is a frequent delay in iOS auto-updates

Apple first rolls out its iOS updates for those who "explicitly seek them out in Settings" so that if there is any critical bug, it can be fixed before it is available for users who have turned on the auto-update option.

Updated:Thu, March 31, 2022 12:58pm

By Priya Singh

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If you choose to have auto-updates while setting up your iPhone, sadly, it doesn't really mean that you will get the updates as soon as they are available. It does take a few weeks at least to reach all the users after it has been officially rolled out. Why, you ask? Craig Federighi, Senior VP of software engineering, Apple has revealed the reasons behind the delay.

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The question was put up by an iPhone user Mateusz Buda in an email to Craig. "iOS auto-update feature (does it even work?)" he has asked. To this, Craig Federighi responded, "We incrementally rollout new iOS updates by first making them available for those that explicitly seek them out in Settings, and then 1-4 weeks later (after we've received feedback on the update) ramp up to rolling out devices with auto-update enabled."

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A screenshot of this email was posted by a Reddit user recently, which was first spotted by MacRumors. Apple's approach makes sense, as it is always better to find any critical bug before the update has been rolled out to all users. This intentional delay of 1-4 weeks not only lessens the burden on Apple servers, but also adds a level of protection for them.

If early adopters report a bug in the update, developers can rectify it or pull the update before it reaches more users.

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For the unversed, Apple has announced that it will now let reader apps sign up for access to an "External Link Account Entitlement" which will allow apps to show a link to a website so that the users can create or even manage an account outside of App Store. For the unversed, reader apps are the ones designed to give access to digital content like magazines, books, music, or videos. These apps include Kindle, Spotify, Netflix and more.

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