When Will iOS 17.3 Be Released?

Apple is actively working on the upcoming iOS 17.3 update, having already seeded three betas to developers and public beta testers. Despite not being as feature-rich as the previous iOS 17.2 update, the testing phase is progressing efficiently, hinting at a relatively short testing period. The anticipated release is set to occur before the end of January.

Potential Launch Date

Considering the timing of the beta releases, a launch during the week of January 22nd appears likely. With two of the three betas lacking significant additions, it suggests the update is nearing completion. If Apple adheres to this schedule, the release candidate version of iOS 17.3 might emerge on January 15th, paving the way for the official launch shortly thereafter.

Alternative Launch Window

While a January 22nd launch seems probable, there is a possibility of a release during the week of January 29th. However, this coincides with the release of visionOS and the Vision Pro headset. Although Apple sometimes aligns software updates with hardware launches, the entirely new operating system, ‌visionOS‌, is unlikely to be bundled with other updates.

Historical Context

Referencing past release timelines, Apple has a history of releasing major iOS updates in late January. For instance, iOS 16.3 came out on January 23rd last year, while iOS 15.3 was released on January 26th in 2022. Therefore, a January 22nd launch for iOS 17.3 aligns with Apple’s established patterns.

Notable Features in iOS 17.3

1. Stolen Device Protection

iOS 17.3 introduces Stolen Device Protection, a security feature designed to thwart thieves who gain access to both your iPhone and passcode. It employs Face ID scans to lock several features, preventing unauthorized access to iCloud Keychain passwords, Lost Mode, Safari payment methods, and more. Additionally, it introduces time-based delays before allowing the deactivation of ‌Face ID‌, Find My, or Stolen Device Protection, as well as changes to Apple ID or ‌iPhone‌ passcodes.

2. Collaborative Apple Music Playlists

Originally intended for iOS 17.2, Collaborative Apple Music Playlists is another noteworthy feature in iOS 17.3. This feature enables multiple users to contribute to a shared ‌Apple Music‌ playlist, enhancing the collaborative music-listening experience.

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