At WWDC 2022, Apple announced the next operating system iOS 16, along with the new MacBook Air using Apple’s latest generation M2 chip. There doesn’t seem to be the “Always On Display” feature being announced anywhere, but we’ve heard from the rumours that this will only be reserved to the new iPhone 14.
But for now, we do get some exciting personalisation to the iPhone lock screen, among other things. Here are some highlights of what’s new on iOS 16.
Lock Screen Customisations
In iOS 16, the Lock Screen gets some love and it truly deserves one. You can customise the fonts of the time now, along applying smart filters to the wallpaper photo so that it looks like it sits in the background behind subjects. I assume this only works if you are using a Portrait photo as your wallpaper.
The filters also take into account the colours of your wallpaper and give some suggestions that you can pick. But most importantly, you can now put widgets on the lock screen which is pretty handy to have quick access to shortcuts.
You can create multiple lock screens and change from one to the other easily.
Less Intrusive Notifications
Don’t you hate it when notification bubbles fill your screen, covering your wallpaper and give the sense of clutter? Well, no more. Notifications now roll in from the bottom and you can even hide them away.
It sounds similar to widgets but more specifically, this allows app developers to let their app sends continuous update rather than pushing new notifications each time. For example, if you are following a live score, waiting for an Uber driver or Dominos pizza to arrive, this Live Activities notification is like a pin on your lock screen and sends you live updates cleanly.
Integration with Focus
With the new Focus feature being introduced in the previous iOS and that you can now create multiple lock screens, iOS 16 gives you the option to link a Focus with a customised lock screen. So for example, you can select a Work Focus and this will switch into that Focus AND also your specific lock screen (with the corresponding wallpaper and widgets). It’s pretty handy as you may only use some apps for work, and different ones in the evening for personal leisure.
Furthermore, a Focus can now also integrate into apps so for example you can choose to see your bookmarks or sites that are work-related only during work, or specific work/personal events in Calendar.
You can now edit messages that you just sent, or even undo the message (assuming your recipient hasn’t seen it yet). You can also mark any message thread as unread so you can come back to them later.
Apple Pay – Tap on iPhone to pay
If you are a business owner and don’t have a Stripe machine or POS system, you can use your iPhone to securely accept payments. It’s really cool and can definitely save a lot of money to small business owners without having to invest in a POS system. This seems to work in the U.S and we aren’t sure if this feature is going globally.
Similarly, there’s a new Apple Pay Later which works like Afterpay here in Australia (most likely a U.S only thing again) and Apple Pay Tracking which will give you order tracking if you place an order through Apple Pay. Expect to see this being implemented when you buy your iPhone 14 later this year from the Apple Store app.
iCloud Shared Photo Library
This is an easier way to share photos to a group like Family. For example, we have a new member in the family and more often than not, my wife, my grandparents, and myself take different photos of our son. We then usually have to share the photos through WhatsApp so everyone can see and have access to the photos.
iCloud Shared Photo Library makes it easier to share photos to everyone who you give access to. There’s an option when you take a picture with the Camera to automatically include this photo in iCloud Shared Photo Library, or manually select photos in your photo library, or automatically select certain people in the photos (through AI), or when the group is only metres apart and iOS 16 automatically detects that you will definitely be sharing the photos together.
Apple iOS 16 Release Date
iOS 16 release date should be sometime in September 2022, when Apple is going to announce the next generation of iPhone, the iPhone 14
Apple iOS 16 Beta Release Date
iOS 16 Beta is available now for developers but the iOS 16 Public Beta is said to be available in July (next month).
Apple iOS 16 Beta Download
How to download iOS 16 Beta? If you are an Apple Developer, you can download iOS 16 Beta 1 now on your device. This can be done by installing a Beta profile on your phone.
But if you are not or just an average Joe, you should wait until the iOS 16 Public Beta is released next month. Or you might be lucky and can get a hold of a developer profile – this way, you can install iOS 16 Beta on your iPhone now. However, note that usually with Beta 1, there will be lots of bugs and the Public Beta is mostly more stable, so best is to wait a bit or check around to see what iOS 16 Beta 1 bugs are.
Find out more about iOS 16 here.