Swift 3.1, a limited-focus upgrade to Apple's general purpose systems language, is due next spring, with a few enhancements to the language itself as well as to the Swift Package Manager and Swift on Linux. Source compatibility with Swift 3.0 also is a key goal.

Apple detailed goals for the language in a recent bulletin, but the company already is looking past this upgrade to Swift 4, which is planned for late 2017, according to Apple's Ted Kremenek, release manager for Swift 3.1.

"To meet this goal, Swift 3.1 will include changes in mainline development, i.e. the master branch, only until January 16," Kremenek said. "After that date, there will be a 'bake' period in which only select, critical fixes will go into the swift-3.1-branch and move master on to Swift 4 development."

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