iOS security updates to be separate from system updates, according to 14.5 fourth beta. Apple yesterday released the fourth developer beta of iOS 14.5, iPadOS 14.5, and the rest of the systems. These versions arrived with few visible new features, but they do contain one interesting change: Security updates could arrive separately from system updates.
We have commented on more than one occasion that the updates of the operating systems are tremendously important. It is not about having the latest emoji, not even about the functions that may arrive with these versions, the importance lies in the security updates.
Apple is aware that the security updates are more important than bringing a lot of features and seems to be working on a system to make security updates even easier to install. In the fourth beta of iOS 14.5, a new setting appears within the Automatic Updates section of iOS that allows us to enable or disable the Install security updates option.
A system that facilitates the adoption of security updates and that can simplify the maintenance of iOS 14 once iOS 15 is released.
There are major advantages to this move. The new system will allow iPhones and iPads to receive security updates more efficiently. Typically, such an update weighs significantly less than a full system update and is faster to install. This could even allow installation to occur transparently to the user, perhaps even via mobile data and sometimes even without rebooting the phone. A system that already works in macOS, since, if we have an older system update installed, software updates and security updates have separate installations.
We do not know how Apple intends to implement this change. Being a beta, we do not even know if it is going to implement it. In any case, this system would allow, for example, to continue updating with security improvements to iOS 14 after the public release of iOS 15 and later versions.
The security of iOS and the devices it lives on is important to Apple. We’ve seen it in the prompt response with the release of iOS 14.4.1 last week to improve WebKit security and we see it in moves like this fourth beta. In any case, the recommendation remains the same: Keep devices updated to the latest version available.