What's new in Apple's iOS 16? ft. WWDC'22

It's that time of the year! Apple revealed iOS 16 this Monday in its keynote event at WWDC22.

“iOS 16 is a big release with updates that will change the way you experience iPhone,” said Craig Federighi, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Software Engineering.

Here's everything you need to know:

Features

Your Lock Screen, but reimagined!

iOS 16 has delivered the biggest update ever to your Lock Screen.

Source: Apple

  • Personalize your Lock Screen the way you like it using a set of custom font styles and colors to change the way can see your time.
  • Create different Lock Screens each with unique wallpaper and different combinations of widgets and switch between them easily.
  • You can now set a collection of photos that will automatically shuffle on your Lock Screen.
  • Live Activities is a new way to stay updated about things in real-time, without leaving your Lock Screen.
Source: Apple

  • There's a new design for your 'Now Playing'. This uses Live Activities to cover your entire Lock Screen with 'Now Playing' and "celebrates album art while you listen along."
  • iOS 16 has added Widget support to your Lock Screen so you can have a glance at information without unlocking your iPhone. Widgets rest right under the time.
  • Despite the additions, your Lock Screen remains clutter-free as your Notifications will be "rolling in" from the bottom of your Lock Screen.

Focus

Focus is a feature first introduced in iOS 15. This year, with iOS 16, Focus has received many new features to help you stay, indeed, focussed.

Source: Apple
  • Link Focus modes with Lock Screens just like you could set custom Home pages for specific Focus modes in iOS 15.
  • Enable a Focus mode easily by just swiping to the corresponding Lock Screen.
  • Focus filters will let you focus by filtering out distracting content from your apps.​
  • You can choose a specific set of tabs that you want to see when you have Work focus enabled or hide your Calendar when you have Personal focus enabled.

iCloud Shared Photo Library

Source: Apple

  • Set a start date or select specific photos with specific people in it and share photos with up to five people.
  • Everyone in the Shared Photo Library will be having equal access to share, edit or delete photos.
  • iOS 16 offers smart features to make the sharing process hassle-free, which includes a switch in your Camera app, and more.

Messages

  • iOS 16 will now let you edit and unsend your messages for up to 15 minutes after sending them.
  • Mark a thread as unread if you wish to reply but not immediately.
  • Recover recently deleted messages for up to 30 days after deleting, just like Photos.
  • SharePlay is now available in Messages, not just FaceTime. So you can have a watch party or listening party with your loved ones, right in Messages.
  • Collaboration has been taken to the next level. You can send invitations to collaborate on a project right in Messages and all the members of the thread will be added automatically to the document. "Compatible with Files, Keynote, Numbers, Pages, Notes, Reminders, and Safari, as well as third‑party apps.", says Apple.
  • Changes made to your collaboration document will be seen as activity updates at the top of the Messages thread.

Mail

  • The Mail app has a new, rich, and improved view for search.
Source: Apple

  • iOS 16 will let you schedule emails to be sent at the right moment.
  • You can now unsend a mail, in iOS 16. This feature is available only for 10 seconds after sending.
  • Use the follow-up feature by moving your sent emails to the top of the inbox to send a follow-up, quickly.
  • The Remind Me feature will let you select a date and time to have emails resurface in your inbox; now you will not forget about emails that you viewed but didn't respond to.
  • The Mail app on iOS 16 will let you add rich links to your emails to provide more context in your emails.

Safari

Source: Apple

  • iOS 16 lets you share tabs with a group of people. This is called Shared Tab Groups. All members in this Shared Tab Group can add tabs and see the tabs update instantly.
  • Tab Groups allow you to set a specific Start Page for the group. You can also pin a tab in the Tab Group.
  • Extension syncing lets available extensions from other devices show up on your iPhone and once installed, an extension will sync. This makes sure you only have to enable it once.
  • Safari Web Page Translation has added support for Turkish, Thai, Vietnamese, Polish, Indonesian, and Dutch. You can now even translate web page images using Live Text.
  • Web push notifications are a part of the update but will be available in 2023.

Passkeys

  • Passkeys are a more secure replacement for passwords.
  • This private key is not kept on any web server so there is no need to worry about any website data leak compromising your data.
  • Passkeys are also safe from phishing since they never leave your device and they are site-specific which makes it almost impossible to be phished.
  • Passkeys sync across all your Apple devices via iCloud Keychain and are end-to-end encrypted.

Live Text

  • Live Text is available on iPhone with A12 Bionic and later.
  • Languages available are English, Chinese, French, Italian, German, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Spanish, and Ukrainian text.
Source: Apple

  • Live Text is now available in videos - it works in paused video frames. You can copy and paste, lookup, and translate.
  • Live Text now works with videos and is also available within the Translate app.

Siri

  • No setup is required for shortcuts. Shortcuts with Siri work as soon as you download an app. (It requires download of speech models)
  • Ask Siri what it can do for you and discover its capabilities. You can also about the capabilities of a specific app. Simply say "Hey Siri, what can I do with [app name]?"
  • Siri can now insert emojis when sending messages.
  • Hang up ongoing calls hands-free by just saying "Hey Siri, hang up" (those on the call will be able to hear this).

(These features are available on iPhone with A12 Bionic and later and require download of speech models.)

  • You can now send messages automatically without the confirmation step. This can be enabled in Settings.

Dictation

Source: Apple

  • Move seamlessly between voice and typing while dictating on-device.
  • Added emoji support while dictating on-device.

(These features are available on iPhone with A12 Bionic and later and require download of speech models.)

  • iOS 16 adds support for automatic punctuations, available in select languages.

Maps

  • Apart from a massive overhaul, the new Maps will be coming to 11 additional countries, including Belgium, France, Israel, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Palestinian Territories, Saudi Arabia, and Switzerland.
Source: Apple

  • Apple Maps has added support for multistop routing with the ability to plan 15 stops.
  • Without leaving the Maps app, you can add transit cards, see low balances, and refill them.
  • You can also see the cost of your journey with transit fares right in the Maps app.

Home

Source: Apple

  • The Home app has received a massive overhaul that makes it easier to manage all your Home Accessories.
  • The new Whole-house view makes it easier for you to see your entire home at a glance in the redesigned Home tab.
  • There are up to four camera views on display in the Home tab.

Health

Source: Apple

  • The update to Health brings a new Medications feature that will help you manage, track, and understand your medicines.
  • You can learn more about the medicine you're taking. Medications also sees drug-drug interactions that could help you prevent any side effects.
  • You can add medicines using your iPhone camera by placing the label in the frame. This will show you results for medication name, strength, and form (Available on iPhone XS, iPhone XR, and later).

Fitness

Source: Apple

  • iOS 16 lets you keep track of and achieve fitness goals even if you don't have an Apple Watch.

Family Sharing

Source: Apple

  • iOS 16 has improved parental control that lets you set up an account for your child with the right set of controls.
  • Your child can now request more Screen Time in Messages. This makes it easier for the parent to approve or decline a request.
  • Family Checklist will help you tweak parental control settings as your child grows older.

CarPlay

Source: Apple
"The next generation of CarPlay covers all of a driver’s screens for a cohesive experience.", says Apple.
  • CarPlay has added features that will be communicating deeply with the system of your vehicle to give you "driving information on instrument cluster displays".
  • Vehicle announcements will be coming in late 2023, claims Apple.

Privacy & Security

Privacy and Security have always been of utmost importance to Apple. This year iOS 16 has included features that will help keep you and your iPhone more secure than ever.

Source: Apple

  • Safety Check is a new section in your Settings app that will help you in "domestic or intimate partner-violent situations" where you can quickly revoke access that you've given to someone.
  • Apps now require permission before accessing the pasteboard to paste content from another app.
  • With iOS 16, the Recently Deleted and the Hidden albums in Photos are locked by default. They can be unlocked using Face ID, Touch ID, or your passcode.
  • Rapid Security Response helps you receive significant security improvements to your device faster than ever.

Some more features

  • You can now mirror to and control your Apple Watch using your iPhone.
  • Live Captions during FaceTime (in beta) will provide "automatically transcribed dialogue".
Source: Apple 
  • Apple Pay Later will let you split the cost of your Apple Pay transaction into 4 payments with zero interest (Available for qualifying applicants in the United States).
  • FaceTime calls now support Handoff.
  • Freeform (coming later this year) is a powerful productivity app that will allow you to brainstorm, plan, create, collaborate, and even share files or insert web links, video, audio, and documents.​
  • The TV app has added HDR10+ support.
  • You can "lift subjects from background" from an image or completely remove the background. This works in Photos, Screenshot, Quick Look, Safari, and more (Available on iPhone with A12 Bionic and later).

iOS 16 has so much more to offer. You can read about all the other features on Apple's Official Website.

When does iOS 16 release?

Apple hasn't given us an exact date of release but they say it will release in late 2022. Since they have been releasing their new software versions for iPhone in September, we can speculate that a stable release of iOS 16 is likely to release in September 2022, alongside the speculated 'iPhone 14' lineup.

Although, iOS 16 has already been released for Developer beta testers. Developer Beta 1 was available right after the Keynote on June 6 and the first Public Beta will be available in July.

Is my iPhone compatible?

Unfortunately, Apple has dropped support for the iPhone 6S, iPhone 6S Plus, iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, and the iPhone SE (1st generation).

Here is a list of all compatible devices:

  • iPhone 13
  • iPhone 13 mini
  • iPhone 13 Pro
  • iPhone 13 Pro Max
  • iPhone 12
  • iPhone 12 mini
  • iPhone 12 Pro
  • iPhone 12 Pro Max
  • iPhone 11
  • iPhone 11 Pro
  • iPhone 11 Pro Max
  • iPhone XS
  • iPhone XS Max
  • iPhone XR
  • iPhone X
  • iPhone 8
  • iPhone 8 Plus
  • iPhone SE (2nd generation or later)

We at Swift Anytime have the mission to make learn iOS development the way everyone enjoys it. You can check out our articles on SwiftUI, Swift, iOS Interview Questions and get started with your iOS journey today.

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