Party like it’s 1970: Apple fixes iOS date bug

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Earlier this week, Apple released iOS 9.3 beta 4, but its arrival was overshadowed a bit by a renewed focus on on broken Apple Pencil support in the iOS 9.3 beta cycle – an issue that had existed before this new beta 4 ever arrived. And while Apple stepped up to let us know what these Apple Pencil problems would be resolved in the next beta, that only helped us to further lose sight of beta 4 itself. As a result, it’s only now that we’re learning that iOS 9.3 beta 4 manages to introduce a very useful fix, taking steps to resolve the lock-up situation that happens when newer iOS hardware has its date manually dialed back to 1970.

With iOS 9.3 beta 4, iTunes can now restore devices stuck in a boot loop caused by this 1970 date bug. Its installation also prevents users from setting the system date that far back in the first place – there’s a hard stop at 2001.

While we’re glad to see Apple delivering a fix so swiftly – even if it’s as part of the next iOS build as a beta, rather than being rushed out as a 9.2 fix – we wonder if the glitch is really fixed, or if this is just a bandage on an open wound.

After all, what if there’s some other way to dial the system date back to 1970; will the bug still be triggered? That is, does this patch actually correct the root problem, or just make it more difficult to trigger it? For the moment, we’re not sure.

Source: Redmond Pie

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About The Author
Stephen Schenck
Stephen has been writing about electronics since 2008, which only serves to frustrate him that he waited so long to combine his love of gadgets and his degree in writing. In his spare time, he collects console and arcade game hardware, is a motorcycle enthusiast, and enjoys trapping blue crabs. Stephen's first mobile device was a 624 MHz Dell Axim X30, which he's convinced is still a viable platform. Stephen longs for a market where phones are sold independently of service, and bandwidth is cheap and plentiful; he's not holding his breath. In the meantime, he devours smartphone news and tries to sort out the juicy bitsRead more about Stephen Schenck!