If you navigate over to the Apple UK website, you will see that iOS4.1 is listed for a September 8 release date. However, you will notice that going to the US site simply lists iOS4.1 as "Coming Soon." How soon? September 8th, we'd expect.
iOS4.1 is going to be the update that gives iPhone owners everything they wanted from iOS4. We understand that not every handset and every iPod Touch is the same, and there can be strange incompatibilities that may never go noticed even with extensive testing. Still, that won't stop us from saying that this update is what iOS4 should have been.
It fixes the proximity sensor issues, which have been a major problem since iOS4 launched. One of the most annoying problems one can have with an iPhone is the device muting them as the person on the other end of the line says, "Hello?…Hello?" and you sit there feeling silly saying, "Hey! Dude, can you hear me?" only to realize that your cheek muted the call. No more.
Or even worse is when you accidentally put it in speaker phone. Then suddenly you are making the loudest phone call in the world and everyone turns to look at you as if you must have horrible hearing.
Also important, at least to 3G owners, is that this software update promises to take care of compatibility issues with the iPhone 3G. While it's hard to know exactly how helpful it will be to everyone until the update is released out into the wild, even longer battery life and a slightly faster performance when doing certain basic tasks would be a great deal better.
Finally, Game Center. Game Center will be launching with this device. It's like a scaled back for mobile version of Microsoft's Xbox LIVE service. There are achievements, scoreboards, the ability to be matched up with other people online to play games. This was originally (or so it seemed from the announcement) set to be released with iOS4. It's likely that Jobs & Co. found that the software wasn't quite up to their expectations yet and decided it would be best to hold it back for a few months. Either way, people will be upset, but it's probably better to make sure the software isn't broken before release. People will always remember a bad launch, but they will forgive you for a delay.
[Via Apple UK]