Initial benchmarks show Safari is 17.2% faster on iOS 6 compared to iOS 5

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In case you haven’t heard, Apple held an event yesterday where they announced new personal computers and showed off the next version of both their desktop operating system (OS X 10.8) and mobile operating system (iOS 6). Now new features are what make geeks foam at the mouth, but this writer cares more about optimizations than anything else. Brian Klug of AnandTech was brave enough to install iOS 6 beta on his iPhone 4S, and he discovered a few things that should make a lot of folks smile. According to his analysis, Safari runs the SunSpider benchmark 17.2% faster using iOS 6 compared to iOS 5. Safari is also more HTML5 friendly, scoring 360 + 9 on the HTML5test in iOS 6 compared to 324 + 9 in iOS 5. Then there’s also the CSS3test, where Safari received a 57% in iOS 6, which is marginally higher than the 52% in Safari on iOS 5.

We’ll be the first to admit, benchmarks don’t usually mean a damn thing to us since there are so many other factors that are relevant to purchasing a device. That being said, the 10% mark is where things start to become perceptible. Meaning when something is 10% faster or slower, you’ll be able to spot a difference using nothing more than your senses. The fact that Safri’s JavaScript engine is over 17% faster has us very excited.

So what else has been improved? It’s hard to say since we don’t have iOS 6 in our hands, and this writer isn’t willing to sacrifice the reliability of his iPhone 4 just to get a sneak peak at software that’s going to come out in a few short months.

The only thing we’re really concerned about is how the now ancient iPhone 3GS will run iOS 6. Apple says it’s compatible with their new software, which is pretty wild when you think about it. The Nexus One is barely more than two years old, yet it’s stuck on Android 2.3 Gingerbread.

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