iOS 8.3 enables EE Voice over Wi-Fi (VoWi-Fi). fixes several vulnerabilities and patches enterprise bugs
Apple has made iOS 8.3 available to compatible iPhone and iPad devices, complete with bug fixes and new features – including EE Voice over Wi-Fi (VoWi-Fi support) – but more importantly resolves several vulnerabilities in the platform and some enterprise problems.
Alongside the headline grabbing multi-racial Emojis, iOS 8.3 adds support for EE Wi-Fi calling on iPhone 5C, 5S, 6 and 6 Plus. Once installed, users can send texts or make calls using a standard wireless connection in areas of poor cellular coverage.
To support this feature, iOS 8.3 improves Wi-Fi connectivity by addressing an issue where a user is continuously prompted for log-in credentials and another problem which caused some devices to disconnect intermittently from an access point.
iOS 8.3 fixes
There are fixes for Bluetooth support, rotation and orientation errors, as well as problems affecting Messages, Car Play and Family Sharing. Apple has also ironed out some accessibility glitches, stabilised many of the standard applications and added more Siri and dictation languages.
For business users, iOS 8.3 improves the reliability of installing and updating enterprise applications, corrects the time zone of calendar events created in IBM notes and allows the use of a physical keyboard to log into Safari web sheets.
There’s improved support for VPNs and web proxies as well as the saving of passwords for such features, while Exchange out-of-office messages can now be edited separately for external replies. Another issue which caused Exchange meetings with long notes to be truncated has also been solved.
A long list of security patches are included in iOS 8.3, including several affecting the operating system’s kernel that could allow an attacker to escalate privileges using an application, bypass network filters and cause a system denial of service.
A bug that allowed the QuickType keyboard to learn users’ passwords has also been fixed, as has another for the lock screen that could prevent a device from being erased after a number of failed passcode attempts.
Apple has also closed a vulnerability that could allow VPN credentials to be recovered and another which could allow a malicious iWork file to run unauthorised code. A full list of security updates can be seen here.
iOS 8.3 had been made available as a public beta, the first time Apple has ever released a beta version of iOS to the general public.
The company has previously preferred to test new versions with its developer community. But the Cupertino-based firm has been encouraged by the success of the Mac OS X Yosemite beta and was keen to avoid the problems that afflicted the launch of iOS 8 by expanding the number of testers.