iOS 15: the 10 new features of the iPhone update
New Apple iOS 15 features were announced at WWDC 2021, the all-online conference that takes place every year at Apple Park in California.
1. A new FaceTime experience with Shareplay
With iOS 15, Apple wants to improve the experience of its users when they make a call on FaceTime. Spatial audio will render your voice better, as if the person is next to you. New microphone modes also bring out vocals if there is background noise. Video calls can be made in Portrait mode, which changes to Vertical, and you can precisely blur the background to fully occupy the foreground. iOS 15 will make it possible to join a FaceTime call via Messages, Calendar, Mail or other third-party apps so that users can join a video from the web browser of an Android or Windows device.
The other new thing is sharing during a FaceTime call. Thanks to SharePlay, it is possible to listen to music together with Apple Music, but also to watch a movie or share your screen. SharePlay is compatible with all Apple devices and the playback controls are shared.
2. Focus, functionality to limit notifications on iOS 15
‘Focus’ is a new feature that allows you to filter notifications and apps based on your activities. The goal: to limit the many daily demands. Focus offers several predefined modes, such as “Personal”, “Work” or “Sleep”, which can be customized. Other modes can be created and configured according to your needs. It offers the possibility of suggesting a list of people and apps authorized to send notifications. Focus lets you create home screens of the most relevant apps and widgets for the time of day. When notifications are blocked, the status is displayed in Messages to indicate that the person cannot be reached.
3. Live Text, to recognize the text in the image
Thanks to on-board artificial intelligence, Live Text makes it possible to identify and recognize text within a photo, like a note taken by hand. The Camera app can also isolate and copy text. A handy feature when it comes to recovering the password for a public Wi-Fi network, for example. Another feature, Visual Search makes it possible to recognize and learn about works of art or the surrounding flora and fauna.
4. New privacy settings
Privacy remains a top priority for Apple. With iOS 15, audio requests made to Siri are fully handled on the iPhone. Apple is implementing a privacy protection feature for Mail. This blocks web beacons, prevents forwarding entities from knowing if an email has been opened, and hides IP addresses so that your location is not tracked. The App Privacy Report is enriched and provides more details on the use that apps make of access to your location, photos or even microphone, over the last seven days.
5. A new design for notifications
Notifications get a new look. They include contact photos and app icons. To ward off the influx of notifications, a summary groups together the less urgent announcements. They are ranked in order of priority and according to the regularity of interactions with the apps.
6. A better browsing experience on Safari
Safari has a new design to allow for easier navigation with one hand. The toolbar is floating and located at the bottom of the screen allowing you to quickly switch between tabs with a simple swipe.
7. iCloud +, new premium features
iCloud offers new premium features. It will be possible to hide your email or have extended access to HomeKit secure video. iCloud + offers a new online privacy service, iCloud Private Relay, available at no additional cost. ICloud users should automatically switch to iCloud + in the fall. ICloud + subscriptions can be shared with all members of a Family Sharing group.
8. Apple Maps: Seeing the World in Three Dimensions
With iOS 15, the Maps app shows more details about shopping areas, buildings, elevation information, road labels and surrounding landmarks. With iPhone or CarPlay, Maps also offers a three-dimensional driving experience.
9. New layouts for the Weather and Notes apps
The Weather and Notes apps show some changes. The Weather app unveils new, more detailed weather information and an animated background. The Notes app lets you add custom tags to easily categorize notes. A new Activity view shows the recent history of a shared note.
10. Your keys and identity cards in Apple Wallet
Apple Wallet supports new types of keys. After introducing digital car keys, they go upmarket and allow you to unlock and start a vehicle without taking your iPhone out of your pocket or bag. IPhone can also open the door to your home, office, or hotel room, depending on the keys stored in Wallet.
For those US states that allow it, Wallet may host the driver’s license or an identity document. Identity cards held in Wallet are encrypted and stored in the Secure Element, the component that provides privacy and security for Apple Pay.
The list of iPhone compatible with iOS 15
Check out the list of iPhone models that are compatible with Apple’s upcoming operating system, iOS 15:
iPhone 12, 12 Pro, 12 Pro Max and 12 mini,
iPhone 11, 11 Pro and 11 Pro Max,
iPhone XS and XS Max,
iPhone 8 and 8 Plus,
iPhone 7 and 7 Plus,
iPhone 6s and 6s Plus,
iPhone SE (1st and 2nd generation),
iPod touch (7th generation).
You will have to wait until the fall of 2021 to be able to install the iOS 15 update on your iPhone. However, for those who wish, the public beta will be available as early as next month.
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