Apple iOS 13 Wi-Fi Improvements
Apple releases a new version of it’s mobile operating system annually. It is as anticipated by the developer community as much as the release of the new model iPhone is anticipated by the consumers. In June 2019, during the Worldwide Developer Conference, Apple announced iOS 13.
Apple are considered an important device manufacturer in the Wi-Fi Professionals community as a marker for the uptake of new 802.11 standards. This is largely because the mobile device market from Apple's perspective is the least fragmented. Apple design and manufacture the hardware as well as the operating system of their mobile phones and tablet devices. This means that when they release a new feature as long as it can be supported within the hardware it is installed on it is generally available.
There are two big announcements this year from Apple in terms of Wi-Fi capabilities. Arguably the most exciting one for Wi-Fi is the inclusion of 802.11ax (aka Wi-Fi 6) in all of the iPhone 11 models. This is less of a software thing and more a hardware reliant capability - the Wi-Fi chipset in the device must be sufficiently new enough and include the specifications to connect using Wi-Fi 6 features. The iPhone 11 is released with iOS13 pre-installed so it is probably a pre-requisite as well.
The other impressive inclusion is support for WPA3. This is a software capability as it is bringing features to older model mobile devices without the requirement of new chipsets or hardware.
WPA3, which is the successor to the Wi-Fi Alliance WPA2 certifications, brings major improvements in security and privacy of Wireless Local Area Networks (WLANs). In 2017 researchers published a vulnerability report which highlighted issues with WPA2.
Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA, more commonly WPA2) handshake traffic can be manipulated to induce nonce and session key reuse...
It is important to assess the viability of using WPA3 for WLANs being deployed presently or in the future. WPA3 is highly recommended when device compatibility can be verified. Otherwise this should be reviewed frequently so WPA3 can be implemented as soon as possible.
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