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92 Engadget Score
The best in its category. We highly recommend it.
92

The best in its category. We highly recommend it.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Engadget Review

iOS 12 doesn’t pack loads of new features or a massive redesign -- just lots of polish and a few really thoughtful additions. That might not sound like the most exciting software update, but the many benefits -- better notifications, a more proactive Siri, tools to help you understand your phone use -- make it a must-install. And the best part? If you’re still hanging onto an older iOS device, you’ll probably notice a boost in performance, too.

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Pros
  • Better performance for older devices
  • Helpful Siri shortcuts and suggestions
  • Much improved notifications
  • Valuable insights in Screen Time
Cons
  • Few momentous features
  • iMessage changes take some getting used to
  • Group FaceTime isn’t ready yet
  • Screen Time can’t magically give you self-control
92 Engadget Score
The best in its category. We highly recommend it.
92

The best in its category. We highly recommend it.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Scores

Engadget

92
 

Users

Not yet scored
 

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Score Breakdown

 
88
Average Critic Score
 
90
Macworld
We don't especially love the iPad Control Centre moving to the top right, presumably either for unity with the iPhone X handsets or because a notched/Home button-free iPad is about to be launched. Either way, it feels like extra confusion for no current benefit. But other than that small quibble (which doesn't affect the iPhone at all), this is a no-brainer, and we recommend making the update right away.
 
90
The Verge
iOS 12 may not be the most exciting software update on the surface: it’s a plate of broccoli, not a fresh, delicious Pie or stack of Oreos. But like a plate of broccoli, at the end of the day, it is pretty good for you.
 
90
Digital Trends
With iOS 12, Apple brings along necessary improvements that were missing in iOS 11. This time around, the changes are much bigger — with more complex features that help make the user experience more fluid. Thanks to machine learning, the iPhone learns your behavioral patterns and adapts over time, making it easier to get simple things done. But it also helps remind you that it’s important to take some time away from your phone as well. While its up to you to keep up with setting boundaries, Screen Time and Do Not Disturb are extremely useful tools in iOS 12 that can help you manage time on your smartphone better.
 
90
Mashable
iOS 12 may not have some of the big marquee features of previous years' updates, but it still delivers massive improvements everywhere it counts most.
 
90
PC Mag
Apple's iOS 12 tackles thorny issues of smartphone addiction head-on with Screen Time, and hands users hitherto unknown power with Siri Shortcuts. That's in addition to fun memoji and an already-excellent mobile operating system.
 
100
Stuff
It might not be packed with sexy features, but this is iOS’s most vital update yet.
 
80
Tom's Guide
This new iOS version improves notifications, security and even Siri, while giving you tools to manage your screen time.
 
80
iMore
iOS 12 is the biggest sign yet that Apple is starting to think beyond multitouch interfaces by finally opening voice to all apps, and beyond current devices by pushing augmented reality so far, so fast. But, in the meantime, there are still performance improvements for past devices and better security and privacy, and a ton more fun, for the here and now.
 
90
TechCrunch
iOS has grown immensely over the years. At first, it was a mobile operating system with no support for third-party apps. I’m sure the first release of iOS (iPhone OS 1.0) was much faster than iOS 12. But systems on a chip are also an order of magnitude faster. That’s why the combination of hardware improvements with software optimizations make iOS 12 a great release when it comes to user experience. For this reason alone, there’s no reason not to install the update.
 
80
The Independent
The fact remains however that this is an update mostly about getting rid of the less worthwhile bits, and the parts of the experience that traditionally sit between the home screen and getting to where you want to be.