Featured Photos

Baseball Hall of Fame - 8/23/11

Featured Video

Avery's QuEST Project - It's Healthy!

House Construction

The Completed Home Renovation

Home Renovation - Complete!

Our House Construction Photoblog

RSS Feed

« | Main | »

Seriously, Apple? Daylight Saving Time?

By Brian | November 6, 2010 | Share on Facebook

You would think that by 2010, all of our smart phone manufacturers would have figured out Daylight Saving Time. I mean, maybe not the really old phones – the ones that were built back when sundials were still all the rage (i.e., the 1990′s), but the modern ones should be OK, right?

Turns out, a small, little-known phone manufacturer called “Apple” still hasn’t gotten it quite right:

Apple iPhone users in the United States must . . . remember to delete and then reset their phone’s alarm clock — otherwise they may be an hour late for work on Monday morning.

A glitch in the iPhone’s operating system will cause recurring weekday alarms not to ring on time on Monday morning because of the end of Daylight Saving Time, which occurs at 2 a.m. on Sunday in the United States. The phone’s alarm app doesn’t recognize the time change and will ring an hour late if users don’t go into the program and manually reset the alarms.

Users who depend on the iPhone to wake them up should create one-time alarms specifically for Monday morning, said Apple spokeswoman Natalie Harrison. “We suggest customers set non-repeating alarms for now and reset after November 7 to resolve the issue,” she told CNN.

Later this month, Apple will release an updated version of its mobile software, iOS 4.2, which will permanently fix the problem, Harrison said.

I’m not sure what’s more embarrassing – getting Daylight Saving Time wrong in your operating system, or releasing a fix for it a couple weeks after it’s needed.

Maybe the guy in charge of Daylight Saving Time was the same guy in charge of keeping the iPhone 4 prototype under wraps…

Topics: Tech Talk | 4 Comments »

4 Responses to “Seriously, Apple? Daylight Saving Time?”

  1. Jeff Porten says at November 11th, 2010 at 2:22 pm :
    Somewhere around here I have a link to a tech talk on how ridiculously difficult it is to implement time in an OS. Unfortunately, the neuronal filing system isn’t recalling where I stored it.

    I can verify that this article is at least partially incorrect. My iPod touch running OS 4.1 kept up with DST without issue. My iPod nano, with a firmware from 2007 or so, reset a week early, and then had an oddball problem where it kept using Greenwich Mean Time for a few days. I haven’t heard tech details on what the problem was — but it stemmed from last year’s shift of the end of DST. Presumably, the code to handle this was included immediately, but may have had some bugs? Don’t know the details.

  2. Brian says at November 11th, 2010 at 4:40 pm :
    Difficult to implement time? Maybe so, but given the very high percentage of OS’es that get this right, I’m going to out on a limb and suggest that the tech talk you’re referring to is a bit heavy on the justification.

    As to actual iTiming(TM) issues in the real world, I can report that my iPad seemed to have updated properly, although I don’t use the alarm function, so I can’t say for sure what would have happened.

    I’m curious about your Nano, since the DST shift wasn’t last year, but three years ago. So either: a) you haven’t installed an OS patch since the fall of 2007, or b) you’ve had this problem every year for the last three years and just noticed it now, or c) something about the most recent patch stopped working when the year = 2010.

    Y2K10, anybody?

  3. Jeff Porten says at November 11th, 2010 at 7:33 pm :
    Nano OS isn’t iOS, so I don’t pay attention to it — when iTunes tells me to update, I update. I did buy it in summer 2007, though.

    I think I’d remember if it were wrong the past two years, and I’m usually awake for the time change. I’m wondering if the initial enabling legislation was temporary, so there’s a sunset in the original code?

    Wasn’t trying to make excuses for Apple — it doesn’t matter whether it’s easy or hard, this should Just Work. But a blanket statement that all iPhones are affected is clearly untrue.

  4. Brian says at November 11th, 2010 at 11:08 pm :
    The law was passed in 2005 and took effect in 2007. We had a big DST2K7 project at work, in which we made sure all of our systems could handle the change…

    Also, to clear up any confusion: the article did not say that the iPhone didn’t adjust the clock for daylight saving time. It said that the built-in alarm feature was not DST compatible, and that it would go off an hour late if it wasn’t reprogrammed. I’m not sure where the line between OS and app is here; that’s definitely something the author could easily have gotten wrong, especially if he/she is not a techie…


Comments will be sent to the moderation queue.