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Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Apple’s secret iOS codenames revealed

Codenames are cool — just look at GI Joe. We know all about the codenames assigned to different versions of Android, but now Apple’s secret moniker for each version of iOS has been revealed.

Apple’s operating system for mobile devices including the iPhone and iPad, iOS, is publicly known by numbers. But
developer Steve Troughton-Smith has let the cat out of the bag on the internal codenames used within Apple’s hallowed walls.

Here’s the rundown of iOS codenames:

  • iOS 1.0 Alpine
  • iOS 1.0.2 Heavenly
  • iOS 1.1 Little Bear
  • iOS 1.1.1 Snowbird
  • iOS 1.1.2 Oktoberfest
  • iOS 2.0 Big Bear
  • iOS 2.1 Sugarbowl
  • iOS 2.2 Timberline
  • iOS 3.0 Kirkwood
  • iOS 3.1 Northstar
  • iOS 3.2 Wildcat
  • iOS 4.0 Apex
  • iOS 4.1 Baker
  • iOS 4.2 Jasper
  • iOS 4.2.5 Phoenix
  • iOS 4.3 Durango
  • iOS 5.0: Telluride
  • iOS 5.1: Hoodoo

Spotted the connection? It took us a minute, but they are American ski runs and resorts.

Heavenly and Northstar are at Lake Tahoe on the border of Nevada and California; Sugarbowl, Kirkwood and Big Bear are in California; Durango and Telluride are in Colorado; Snowbird is in Utah; Timberline and Hoodoo are in Oregon; and Phoenix is in Arizona.

Baker probably refers to Mount Baker in Washington. Outside the US, Apex and Jasper are in Canada. We’re waiting for iOS 256.1.1 Leeds Snowdome.

There’s a Wildcat Mountain in New Hampshire, which perhaps rules out Wildcat from the list of big cat-themed codenames Apple uses for its OS X desktop software. That pack includes Cheetah, Puma, Jaguar, Panther, Tiger, Leopard, Snow Leopard and the latest version, Lion.

Update: With the unveiling of the latest version of OS X in June 2013, Apple has moved away from the cat theme and embraced extreme sports once again. OS X Mavericks is named after the Californian surf spot, and you can read all about it here — as well as details of the latest iOS 7, and a passel of new MacBooks

It’s Android that’s made a nom de guerre de rigeur for software updates. Each new version of Android is named after a tasty treat in alphabetical order: Cupcake, Donut, Eclair, Froyo, Gingerbread, Honeycomb and the latest, Ice Cream Sandwich. The next update is rumoured to be Jelly Bean.

But did you know that Google’s operating system actually started out named after well-known androids? According to Troughton-Smith, the A and B of Android were cartoon robots Astro and Bender, from The Jetsons and Futurama.

Microsoft is also getting in on the action, with versions of Windows Phone codenamed MangoTango and Um-Bongo — sorry, I mean Apollo.

What’s your favourite codename? Have you ever ridden the powder at any of the iOS resorts? Slalom down to the comments or shred at our Facebook page.

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