Apple iOS 10.3 update brings an all-new file system, and Siri is now IPL-ready


Bringing a long-overdue revamp to Apple’s 30-year-old file system, along with a more capable Siri, the new iOS update has much to offer
Apple has begun releasing iOS 10.3 for iPhone 5 and later, iPad 4th generation and later, and iPod touch 6th generation and later. Among other enhancements, this newest update includes support for locating a lost pair of AirPods, an all-new file system, CarPlay improvements and more.
A big feature in iOS 10.3 is the introduction of the new Apple File System (APFS). This is the company’s all-new file system that will be used across macOS, iOS, tvOS, even watchOS. Unlike the earlier file system (Apple HFS+) that has been in force for the last 30 years, this update brings better support to today’s technologies. Most importantly, it is optimized for devices based on flash and solid-state storage -- a trend that is increasingly becoming the norm in many of today’s personal technology devices.
APFS has been developed to minimise latency (response time,) making it better suited to devices like iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch where immediacy of response is a key factor for a better user experience. The file system now also brings full disk encryption for higher device data security. The beefed-up file system also, for the first time, brings 64-bit support enabling the OS to now track over 9 quintillion files on disk, assuming you’d ever need to. Other improvements include being able to save a snapshot of the current OS state (for restoring, should something go wrong,) and more optimal device storage utilization.
One downside is that devices formatted with APFS will not be recognized by devices running OS X 10.11 Yosemite and earlier. Also owing to the switchover to the new file system, install times for the new OS have been reported to be lengthy -- over 20 minutes on an iPhone 7 and up to 48 minutes on an iPad Air 2, according to Apple Insider.
Also -- just in time for this year’s edition of the IPL -- Siri will now have the ability to deliver match updates from the Indian Premier League and International Cricket Council. With the new update, Siri can now also be used to schedule rides with certain taxi hailing apps, check status of bills with payment apps, and check various car parameters when used in conjunction with certain auto maker’s apps.
AirPod users will find some respite with the new Find My AirPods feature, where a sound is used to help locate an AirPod in the vicinity. The feature also maintains a record of the last known location of where an AirPod was connected to an iOS device via Bluetooth. However this feature cannot be used to locate the AirPods when the paired device isn’t nearby, and it can’t be used to locate the AirPod’s charging case either.
On the developer front, app creators can now reply to customer reviews, or even request a review.
iOS 10.3 will be available as a free over-the-air update to all iOS 10 users, and can optionally be downloaded via iTunes.
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