Apple is often praised for how fast and how consistent it is in updating its iPhones to the latest versions of iOS. Considering it only has a few models and has complete control, it’s not that unfeasible. But even Apple has limits and all iPhones have an “expiration” date. For the iPhone 5S, that should have been last year with the release of iOS 11. Now it seems, however, that there’s a small chance that it could actually see an iOS 12 update later this year.
It’s a very small chance, mind. The “evidence” comes from a sighting in the WebKit source code, the open source web engine that powers Apple’s Safari browser. Comments seem to suggest that iOS 12 runs on the iPhone 5S, at least in testing. Whether it goes out into production is a whole different matter.
If it does, it will be a mighty impressive long life for the smartphone. Launched in 2013, the iPhone 5S is sort of a first and a last in some things. It was the last to sport Apple’s old blocky and small design, save for the iPhone SE. It was also the first iPhone to have a 64-bit processor, which does help make putting iOS 12 on it technically easier.
This possibility brings up of the question of why Apple would make such a rare move. This perhaps plays into the speculation that the iOS 12 release is really only a “half” release, one that is focused more on bug fixes and improvements to address performance complaints in the current iOS 11 version. Given its aging hardware, those fixes are definitely much-needed on the iPhone 5S.