Is the Final Version of iOS 6.1 Ready for Public Release?

A couple reports surfaced recently claiming that Apple is about to release a new beta of iOS 6.1, which could be the golden master build, meaning the software is ready to go public.

As we previously reported, there have been four betas supplied to developers up until now, with the first one arriving on 1 November, 2012; the second 11 days later on 12 November; iOS 6.1 beta 3 was published on 3 December; and the fourth beta was released on 17 December, 2012.

Also, we must note that the updates were mostly minor, focusing on Apple’s Passbook app, iCloud security and, for developers, an enhanced Map Kit framework, suggesting that Apple is working on improving their two latest apps, Passbook and Maps.

This Monday there will have been four weeks since the latest iOS beta, so it is likely that Apple will push out another, which doesn’t necessarily mean the GM version, as with iOS 5.0 Apple seeded nine betas, while iOS 6.0 took five betas to take the current shape.

iOS 2.1 had four betas; iOS 3.1 had three; iOS 4.1 three beta versions, while iOS 5.1 counted three beta seeds before Apple published the final version on the day it announced the new iPad.

Long story short: the release of iOS 6.1 has already taken longer than expected, but we must note here that iOS 5.1 took 100 days (like iOS 6.0) to get its final shape, which was updated two months later. Another side note: Scott Forstall has left Apple, and the Maps app isn’t up to Apple’s standards.

So, can developers expect a new beta tomorrow? The sources cited by say we can.