iOS 15.4 release in the first half of March, iOS 16 development moving fairly smoothly

Apple should release iOS 15.4 in the first half of March following new hardware unveilings as development work on iOS 16, the next major update to the iPhone operating system, continues unabated, according to a reliable source.

An image showing a young male's hand holding an iPhone 13 with iOS 15 home screen
  • Expect a public release of iOS 15.4 in the first half of March
  • Apple is expected to unveil iPhone SE 3 and more on March 8
  • Meanwhile, development work on iOS 16 is progressing “fairly smoothly”

Apple iOS 15.4 will be the last release before iOS 16

iOS 15.4 is most likely the last major update to iOS 15. Even though iOS 16 won’t release publicly before the fall, iOS 15 will continue to receive updates, but only security fixes. iOS 15.4 packs in several new features, like the ability to use Face ID with a mask, a new Apple Pay tap-to-pay feature, new emojis and of course Universal Control, which lets you control multiple iPads and Macs.

Mark Gurman, writing in his Power On newsletter on Bloomberg:

Apple gears up for iOS 15.4, its last big update before iOS 16. The latest iOS update, 15.4, will be arriving in just a few weeks. I’m told everything is on schedule for a release in the first half of March—around the announcement of the new iPhone SE, iPad Air and updated Macs. Also, iOS 16 development is moving fairly smoothly, and the release isn’t facing any setbacks thus far from what I’m told.

iOS 16 development reportedly hasn’t hit any major snags, with all the major new features expected to be previewed at Apple’s annual developer conference in June.

Apple to release iOS 15.4 close to the first half of March

Gurman previously expressed his belief, based on information obtained from sources, that Apple has scheduled its spring event on Tuesday, March 8. He’s now saying a public release of iOS 15.4 will happen around the announcement of new hardware from Apple, but when exactly? Read: How to set up a Mac the right way

It’s plausible that iOS 15.4 would drop sometime between March 8 and March 18, most likely on March 15 or March 17. An online-only unveiling, Apple’s event is thought to take place on Tuesday, March 8. Apple should then start taking pre-orders for the newly-announced devices on Friday, March 11. At any rate, it makes sense to release iOS 15.4 between the March 8 announcements and retail availability of the devices expected to start on Friday, March 18

iOS 16 development is progressing unabated

iOS 16 development hasn’t hit any major snags so far, with all the major new features expected to be previewed at Apple’s annual developers conference in June. From what Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman has been told, the iOS 16 release isn’t facing any setbacks. Apple hasn’t yet announced the dates for WWDC22, but expect an online broadcast in June or July. A developer-centric event, WWDC22 will be an opportunity for Apple to share what’s new for iOS 16, iPadOS 16, watchOS 9, macOS 12.3 and tvOS 16. Read: How to find out your MacBook battery cycle count