updated 02:00 am EST, Tue January 10, 2012
Timing of final 5.1 still unknown
[Updated with Siri Dictation info] Apple has posted a third developer beta of iOS 5.1, reports say. The firmware is identified as build 9B5141a, and includes a variety of bugfixes and minor improvements over beta 2. One major change, though, is the reappearance of the "Enable 3G" toggle, which Apple inexplicably removed with the advent of iOS 5.0.
While unimportant for some iPhone owners, the ability to disable 3G is useful for people worried about battery life. 3G can potentially be a major cause of power drain, and a selective toggle allows people to save some power while still taking phone calls and receiving data. The only downside is slower data, which limits the practicality of iOS apps.
[Update] A 9to5Mac tipster has spotted references to a legal notice "About Privacy and Dictation" in the new beta running on an iPad. No actual dictation ability exists in iOS 5.1b3, but the notice (which is not the same one or in the same place as the one found on an iPhone 4S) could point to plans to offer at least Siri Dictation (which Apple licenses from Nuance) in a future version of iOS or perhaps in a future model (such as the expected iPad 3, whenever it arrives).
Separate reports claim that the Siri Dictation notice has also been spotting in the latest generation iPod Touch running the developer beta, but this as yet unconfirmed. [image via 9to5Mac]