Here’s The List of iOS 6 Features That Are Not Available On Older iOS Devices

While the original iPad, and the iPod touch 3rd gen won’t be getting the iOS 6 software update, the older iOS devices that are compatible with iOS 6 won’t get all the features.

Apple typically does this to ensure that the OS is speedy enough on older hardware. (No MMS on original iPhone, no wallpaper on iPhone 3G, no Siri on iPhone 4)

How does older hardware fare this time?

Let’s take a look.

iPhone 3GS:

The fact that a three year old device was eligible for a 4th major OS upgrade was a major surprise in itself, although some of the surprise was taken away thanks to a leak one day before WWDC. What features would the iPhone 3GS lack when it’s on iOS 6?

  • No shared Photo Streams.
  • No VIP and Flagged lists enhancements to Mail
  • No offline Reading List
  • No 3D maps and turn by turn directions
Many of these omissions are pretty surprising, especially the lack of offline Reading List. The feature doesn’t demand for a lot of resources (loads of read it later apps support the device), so why leave it out? Same goes with the lack of VIP and Flagged lists enhancements, a few, simple additions to a table view shouldn’t really be that hard to achieve or even FaceTime over cellular network.
iPhone 4:
The iPhone 4 is just one generation behind the latest iPhone, so not many features have been left out:
  • No Siri. (Not that we expected.)
  • No 3D maps and turn-by-turn navigation.
  • Update: No Facetime over cellular network
Although the lack of 3D maps surprised us a bit, rendering 3D maps on the device itself might just be asking too much from the iPhone 4′s graphics processing unit.
iPad 2:
iPad 2 sports the same processor as iPhone 4S so it is not very surprising.
  • No Siri
  • Update: No Facetime over cellular network (for iPad 2 Wi-Fi + 3G model)
Apart from the lack of Siri, the iPad 2 features pretty much everything in the iOS 6 upgrade including 3D maps and turn by turn navigation (that is, if you’ve got a 3G iPad with built in GPS).
iOS 6 compatible with
Apple’s widely anticipated Maps back end also doesn’t stack up well against Google’s highly detailed maps that it has been working on for years. Besides, by replacing Google’s maps, Apple has also taken away Street View and Transit directions from the Maps app, features some users might heavily depend open. Apple will of course improve upon this with time by partnering with more mapping companies like TomTom, but till then many users accustomed to Google’s maps might be left looking for an alternative solution or wait for Google’s 3D Maps app.
Here’s a nice chart summing up the feature omissions by Amit Agarwal of Digital Inspiration (Note: iPhone 3GS does not have FaceTime so it’s irrelevant to this discussion).
As an iPhone 3GS, an iPhone 4 or iPad 2 owner, what’s your take on these feature omissions?
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  • Qwazi

    I’m pissed off of the fact that the iPad 2, even while running the same processor as the iPhone 4S, can’t have Siri.

  • Acid

    the update doesnt seem to give any features that i would care about,but after reading previous comments im hoping my ipad doesnt go slower, its already slow enough. i had no idea though that apple does the thing with forcing people to buy new generations of ios devices…im starting to like apple less and less now, but the features and speed of the devices are great, and the theme and controls, it just sucks to see that apple is gonna try to make us waste our money on new devices…and honestly i thought that the ios 6 would give ipad2 siri, or at least i was hoping it would…ive tried getting spire and other copies of siri but none of them ever work, i can never get the proxy thing…not even sure if i should update when the update comes out.


    im pissed off that iphone 4 doesnt have 3d maps >:(

  • Mbrighton

    Anybody know if the 3d map on the iPad 2 is supposed to just look like a slanted image? Lol I hope they dont expect anyone to be satisfied with this..

  • Fawwaz

    Panaroma camera does not work in iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4. Correct me if I’m wrong :)

  • anshul chhabra

    will i be able to use gps again in iphone 3gs after upgrading it to ios 6? please tell me via an email on my account.

  • jeejeejarrjarr

    Definitely agree with you on the first half.

    Second half… have you not heard of Android’s different releases? Gingerbread, Honeycomb, Ice Cream Sandwich? The list goes on. Androids are a very competitive phone to the iPhone.

    (I own an iPhone myself)

  • gatorguy

    With Android’s Jellybean OS update, voice to text processing is done directly on the device rather than by remote servers.