5+ ways iOS 9 might break your app
What are you waiting for? iOS 9 is in public beta. Download it and get testing! There's no time like the present.
While you're waiting on the download, let's talk about what's new. By that I really mean, what's likely to mess up your app? Whether you're on web or native, the new iOS introduces a few extra edges you'll want to consider.
The big ones are multitasking, low-power mode, and keyboard additions.
This release sees a lot of love going towards the iPad. Three new tablet views are:
- Slide Over
- Split View
- Picture in Picture (for video only)
These features are only available on the Mini 2+ and Air 1+ iPads. On this releasse, Apple was kind enough to highlight spots where bugs are likely to appear.
What to test
The quick and dirty summary of for testing is:
- Be mindful of resource consumption. Mo' apps, mo' problems.
- Respect the keyboard. Keyboards on secondary apps can mess with your app even if your app doesn't have any use for a keyboard.
- Use Auto Layout and Storyboards. In a multitasking world, users fully control the apps’ bounds.
- Does your app project to a secondary screen? Switching between split apps is a new trigger for the old UIScreenDidConnectNotification.
ACHTUNG! Multitasking is ON by default
You'll eventually want to support these spiffy new multitasking features. But let's assume you're sane and not ready to hop on the bandwagon.
iOS 9 adds low-power mode. Yay! More battery life. Also, more edge cases. The good news is it's easy to test. Turn on low-power mode by visiting Settings > Battery.
The low-power mode changes a few things, which are relevant to testing:
- Reduced CPU and GPU performance
- Pause discretionary and background activities, including networking
- Disable Mail fetch
- Disable motion effects
- Disable animated wallpapers
Any or all of the above might cause strange behavior. Test all the important flows of your app while in low-power mode.
Get designers and PMs involved with the testing. Some of the above might not cause actual bugs but may very well cause unexpected ugliness.
The keyboard has some snazzy new tricks, as well.
- A two-finger tap and hold expands the text field for easy scrolling.
- New system fonts with new spacing.
- Explicit buttons for cut, copy, and paste.
Native apps are likely to be relatively safe from the keyboard changes. Expect Apple's native components to handle the change well.
Download the beta! It's Apple's first public beta, so take advantage. Flip through the docs and get acquainted.
If you're looking to update your cache of test devices, check the refurb site. It's an easy way to save a few bucks.