Probably not, iOS 9.3 really doesn't add anything to older devices like the iPad 2 or iPhone 4s. For example, Night Shift mode is only available on devices with 64-bit processors. Apple tablets with 64-bit processors include both iPad Pro models, both iPad Air models and the iPad mini 2-4.
Apple earlier today confirmed in a statement to iMore that iOS 9.3 was bricking some older devices, such as the iPad 2 and iPhone 5s.
"Updating some iOS devices (iPhone 5s and earlier and iPad Air and earlier) to iOS 9.3 can require entering the Apple ID and password used to set up the device in order to complete the software update. In some cases, if customers do not recall their password, their device will remain in an inactivated state until they can recover or reset their password. For these older devices, we have temporarily pulled back the update and will release an updated version of iOS 9.3 in the next few days that does not require this step.”
All devices that support iOS 8, including the iPad 2 and iPhone 4s, will support iOS 9 when the firmware is officially released in the fall. Here's a complete list of all the iOS 9 supported devices:
iPhone 6 Plus
iPad Air 2
iPad mini 2
iPad mini 3
iPod touch 5
Apple today released iOS 8.1.1 for the iPod touch, iPhone and iPad. The update includes various bug fixes and "stability and performance improvements" for both the iPhone 4s and iPad 2. It was originally revealed by Arts Technica that iOS 8 ran slower on Apple's older hardware. This prompted some iPad 2 users to stick to iOS 7 and miss out on the new features found in iOS 8, but now users with older devices can upgrade... Unless you're jailbroken and want your device to stay that way!
iOS 8.1.1 also patches an exploit used by the Pangu8 jailbreak. This means anyone with a jailbroken device running iOS 8.1 should avoid iOS 8.1.1. If you're running iOS 8.0 and haven't jailbroken yet, you can still do so but you will not be able to upgrade to iOS 8.1. You can learn how to jailbreak your iPad or iPhone using Mac OS X here or using Windows here.
UPDATE: iOS 8.1.1 released on November 17, 2014 includes "increased stability and performance improvements for iPad 2 and iPhone 4s."
iPad 2 owners may want to wait to upgrade to iOS 8. Apple's latest OS has been shown to run sluggish on both the iPad 2 and iPhone 4s. This should not be a surprise since the second-generation iPad was released in 2011.
Most people thought 2014 would be the beginning of the end for the iPad 2, but Apple has decided to grant it one more year of life by allowing it to support iOS 8. However, Ars Technica has discovered that iOS 8 on the iPad 2, and iPhone 4s, isn't all that it's cracked up to be.
As with past iOS releases, the oldest models on their way out are not equipped to handle Apple's improved software. Both the iPad 2 and iPhone 4s suffer from glitches when iOS 8 is installed, and they can't take advantage of some of the new features found in the update. For example, Ars Technica lists these iOS 8 features that depend on newer hardware:
Even though it has been officially retired by Apple, the iPad 2 will support iOS 8 when the new OS is released this fall. Normally discontinued Apple products do not support the latest iOS release, but the second-generation tablet is listed as one of the comptible devices at the bottom of Apple's iOS 8 preview. The older iPhone 4s and 5th generation iPod will also support Apple's new operating system. Here's a complete list of all the iOS 8 compatible devices:
- iPod Touch: 5th Generation
- iPhone: 4s, 5, 5c and 5s
- iPad: iPad 2, iPad with Retina display (3rd and 4th generation), iPad Air, iPad mini and iPad mini with Retina display
In a unsuspected move today, Apple has discontinued the iPad 2 and replaced it with the fourth-generation "iPad with Retina display". The Cupertino company also launched a more affordable 8GB version of its iPhone 5c in the UK. Now we know why most of the major retailers have been offering so many discounts on both the second-generation tablet and 16GB iPhone 5c.
The iPad 2 was originally unveiled on March 2, 2011, and has occupied Apple's entry-level tablet slot since being replaced by the iPad 3 a year later. However, the introduction of the iPad mini with Retina display at $399 has made the 9.7-inch second-generation tablet obsolete, forcing Apple to finally put it out to pasture.
After nearly three years on the market, the non-Retina iPad 2 will be discontinued. This is according to a report by AppleInsider, which states Apple will ramp down legacy iPad 2 production and take the model off the market "in the near future". The news comes as no surprise, as similarly priced iPad mini units with Retina displays are outselling the older design.
For those looking to pick up a Wi-Fi only iPad 2 before they disappear from shelves, the device can be had for only $299 at Walmart, a discount of $100 off Apple retail pricing. The iPad 2 features the dual-core A5 processor, front-facing FaceTime camera, 1024 x 768 display resolution (132 pixels per inch) and a 30-pin dock connector.
Walmart is offering $100 in rollback savings on Apple's 16GB Wi-Fi-only iPad 2 for the next 30 days. The retailer is also giving away up to $300 in store credit for older device trade-ins. Older model tablets are bringing in at least $100, which means you could potentially get an iPad 2 for $199. That's not a bad price if you're looking to nab a second-generation iPad, but it seems silly to buy an iPad 2 when you could get a newer iPad mini with Retina display for around the same price. Even the 7-inch 16GB Kindle Fire HD is cheaper at $199.
You can also trade-in your old smartphone and receive store credit towards a 16GB iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c or Samsung Galaxy S3/S4. The amount of credit you will receive depends on the condition of your old device, and the deal requires that you sign a new two-year agreement with AT&T or Verizon.