iOS 16 Features, Release Date Announced, Here’s Everything You Need To Know
Apple today announced the next big thing in terms of iOS 16 and iPadOS 16, new updates that will be installed on iPhones and iPads later this year. The first betas are being made available to developers today, with those on the public betas getting involved next month.
There’s a lot to get into here, with Apple having just announced both big new updates earlier today as part of its WWDC22 opening keynote. With lots to talk about, let’s dive in!
At the top of the list is a new iOS 16 personalized lock screen that will allow people to select new wallpapers, lock screen text, and more to suit their mood or aesthetic. New widgets can also be added to the lock screen that are a cross between Apple Watch complications and the kind of widgets we are used to. The widgets can be live as well, dubbed Live Activities, making them perfect for sports scores and more.
A new Lock Screen gallery features a range of options for inspiration, such as Apple collections, which include Pride and Unity to celebrate special cultural moments; a Weather wallpaper to see live weather conditions as they change throughout the day; and an Astronomy wallpaper for views of the Earth, moon, and solar system. Users can also create Lock Screens using their favorite emoji or color combinations. With multiple Lock Screens, users can switch between their favorites with just a swipe.
Apple has also changed how notifications work, moving them to the bottom of the screen to give widgets room to breathe at the top.
Focus Mode Improvements
Apple has also tweaked how Focus modes work, allowing people to link them to their Lock screens systems. Choosing a Focus mode can now change the entire Locks screen, picking a new wallpaper and altering the widgets that are being displayed.
iCloud Family Photos
A feature that has long been requested, a new family iCloud Photo Library will be offered, allowing multiple people to share a single library that will include their photos and videos. People can choose which content is added to the library or have it happen automatically as new photos and videos are created.
iCloud Shared Photo Library gives families a new way to share photos seamlessly with a separate iCloud library that up to six users can collaborate on, contribute to, and enjoy. Users can choose to share existing photos from their personal libraries, or share based on a start date or people in the photos. A user can also choose to send photos to the Shared Library automatically using a new toggle in the Camera app. Additionally, users will receive intelligent suggestions to share a photo that includes participants in the Shared Photo Library.
Messages Can Be Edited, Deleted, And More
For the first time Apple is now allowing people to edit iMessage, while entire messages can also now be deleted should the need arise — although they can also be retrieved for up to 30 days. Apple also now allows people to mark threads as unread, too. Another improvement is better integration with SharePlay, making it easier for people to share experiences.
Apple Mail now allows people to schedule the sending of emails, while the app can now detect “if the user forgot to include an important part of their message, such as an attachment.” A snoozing feature is also being added, while people can also be reminded about emails if they are yet to receive a response.
Apple Pay Later, Order Tracking, and other Wallet Updates
As part of a refreshed Wallet app, Apple Pay Later will allow people to buy an item and pay over six weeks with no interest or fees. There will also be support for Apple Pay Order Tracking to give people the ability to keep tabs on what their orders are up to and when they will arrive.
Apple says iOS 16 will allow people to share their Digital Keys in new ways, too.
Keys and IDs in Wallet get expanded support. Users can use their ID in Wallet for apps requiring identity and age verification. To ensure a private and secure experience, only the necessary information required for the transaction will be provided to the app, and the user can review and consent to share it using Face ID or Touch ID. Additionally, users can securely share their home, hotel, office, and car keys in Wallet through messaging apps, including Messages, Mail, and more.
Live Text and Visual Look Up Enhancements
Live Text uses on-device intelligence to recognize text in images across iOS, and it is now expanding to include video. Users can pause a video on any frame and interact with text. Live Text also adds the ability for users to quickly convert currency, translate text, and more.
Taking this a step further, a new Visual Look Up feature lets you tap and hold a subject in a photo to lift it up and throw into apps like Messages. As Apple tells us, “Visual Look Up also expands to recognize birds, insects, and statues.”
Apple is also introducing the next generation of CarPlay with an update that is designed to make use of cars with multiple and larger displays.
Apple also says that cars will be able to feed their information and features into CarPlay for the first time, giving the app a chance to interact with things like the radio and climate control for the first time.
iOS 16 beta is currently live and available to download for developers, but a public beta will be releasing next month.