© Apple Everything you need to know about iOS 15: Release date, new features, supported devices
iOS 15 is releasing for compatible iPhones on September 20. It brings new features to FaceTime calls, Safari, Photos and more. iOS 15 also adds more privacy features for third-party apps. iOS 15 is finally coming to iPhones next week. Apple at the iP Customize | Align | Deletehone 13 launch event, revealed the stable release date of iOS 15. It was first unveiled at WWDC 2021 in June this year, and has since been available in beta. The new software update for iPhones brings features such as FaceTime calls on Windows and Android devices, new focus feature, redesigned notifications and more.
Here’s everything you need to know about iOS 15.
iOS 15 release date
iOS 15 will be released for all compatible iPhones on September 20. It will be available as a free update that you can download and install from the settings menu on your iPhone.
Devices that support iOS 15
In addition to the new iPhone 13 series, iOS 15 is compatible with 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 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone SE 1st gen, iPhone SE 2nd gen, and iPod touch 7th gen.
FaceTimes is getting big upgrades with iOS 15. Apple has added spatial audio to FaceTime calls, and new microphone modes that separate the users’ voice from background noise. Portrait mode is also coming and a new grid view for group FaceTime calls. It’s also getting support for SharePlay that lets you listen to songs, watch a TV show or movies together.
The highlight though is support for FaceTime calls on Android and Windows devices. It is now possible for anyone to join FaceTime calls from their web browser through a link.
New focus feature
iOS 15 is getting a new focus feature that is aimed at reducing distraction. When in focus mode, your iPhone will filter notifications and apps based on what you prioritise. You can create a custom focus or select a suggested focus profile. You can also create home screen pages with apps and widgets that apply to moments of focus to only display relevant apps. iOS 15 will also update your status when in focus mode in the Messages app to notify others that you are currently not reachable.
Redesigned notificationsiOS 15 brings redesigned notifications with contact photos for people and larger app icons. Notifications will also be prioritised with less critical notifications delivered at once in the morning and evening. This will be done through on-device learning to display the most relevant notifications on top based on your interactions with apps.
Live Text, advanced Spotlight search and more
Live Text can recognise text in a photo and let you take actions like searching for and locating the picture of a handwritten family recipe or capture a phone number from a storefront and directly make a call. Similar to Google Lens, there's a Visual Look Up feature that can scan popular art, plants and flowers and provide more information about these objects. Live Text can also find text and handwriting in photos.
On iOS 15, Spotlight can search for photos by location, people, scenes or objects. It also offers web image search, and enhanced search results for contacts with conversations, shared photos and location through Find My.
The Memories section in the Photos app is getting a new look, interface and integration with Apple Music. Using on-device intelligence songs will be suggested from your Apple Music library for your Memories.
iOS 15 comes with more privacy features. Now audio of Siri requests will be processed entirely on the iPhone. Mail Privacy Protection prevents senders from learning if the email has been opened or not and it also hides IP addresses. iOS 15 will also provide an App Privacy Report to show how apps use the location, photos, camera, microphone and contacts in the last seven days.
Safari is also getting redesigned on iOS 15 with a new tab bar that floats at the bottom of the screen. It’s easier to switch between tabs now, and also group tabs together and save them. There’s also a customisable start page and web extensions for Safari on iOS 15.
Apple Maps will now show enhanced details in cities for neighbourhoods, commercial districts, elevation, and buildings including new road colours and labels, and custom-designed landmarks. There’s also a new night-time mode with a moonlit glow on Apple Maps. navigation has also received an upgrade with a 3D city-driving experience and new road details that shows turn lanes, medians, bike lanes, and pedestrian crosswalks better.
iOS 15 will let users unlock and start cars through digital car keys without having to take their iPhone out. It can also be used to unlock your home, office or hotel room through digital keys stored in the Apple Wallet. More features include redesigned weather and notes apps, Siri adding Announce Notifications on AirPods, iCloud+ and more.
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