Apple to release iOS 7.1 ‘any day now’ with support for SXSW iTunes Festival app

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The highly-anticipated iOS 7.1 update could be landing any day now, according to a new report by Daring Fireball’s John Gruber. The long-time Apple speculator and dot-connector has in the past proven to have knowledgeable sources that work inside the company.

Gruber says that a ‘little birdie’ has informed him that the app for Apple’s upcoming iTunes Festival at SXSW in Austin, which will be used for providing information and streaming live performances, will require iOS 7.1. Thus the update should ship any day now…

From Daring Fireball:

“Apple’s first iTunes Festival in the U.S. starts a week from today at SXSW in Austin. Apple is going to stream the performances to iOS devices using an app, but I’ve heard from a little birdie that the app requires iOS 7.1 (which explains why the app isn’t out yet). That means iOS 7.1 should ship any day now.”

Gruber’s information matches up with previous reports which claimed that Apple would release iOS 7.1 sometime around mid-March. The firmware has been in testing since back in November, and is now in its fifth developer beta—which was released in early February.

It also lines up with the recent debut of Apple’s CarPlay platform. We had long anticipated Apple’s vehicle integration project to launch alongside iOS 7.1, and according to the company’s press release, CarPlay will be available soon for compatible iPhones via an iOS update.

As for 7.1, the update includes a number of tweaks such as revamped keyboard keys, new UI for the Phone dialer and Power Off screen, and refined icons for Phone, FaceTime, and Messages apps. It also features several bug fixes and reliability/performance improvements.

And as for the SXSW iTunes Festival, it’s to be Apple’s first held in the US. It kicks off on March 11 and will include performances by Coldplay, Imagine Dragons, Soundgarden, Kendrick Lamar and many other A-list bands and musicians.