iOS 16 announced with lock screen widgets, live activities, iCloud Photo Sharing, and more

Apple is bringing the three most-requested features to the Messages application. These include ‘edit/undo’ sent messages, mark threads as unread, and SharePlay is also coming to Messages. There’s a new dictation feature as well.

iOS 16 features

iOS 16

Lockscreen: The biggest iOS 16 change is the new lock screen. Users can now add customised wallpapers directly from the lock screen. They can change the theme colour and photo shuffle for wallpapers. Lastly, Apple finally brings the ability to add widgets to the lock screen, including battery levels, alarms, time zones, Activity ring progress, and more. Notifications on the lock screen will now roll out from the bottom and this should help for those buying the upcoming large iPhones.

Users can also create Lock Screens using their favourite emoji or colour combinations. They can even create multiple lock screens and switch between them with a swipe.

The lock screen also gets a new ‘Live Activities’ feature that shows real-time updates for sports, food delivery tracking and much more. 

iOS 16-1

Messages: Apple has enabled the ability to edit and undo sent messages. Users can mark any thread as unread. The company had introduced the Shared with you feature last year which is said to make things like sharing photos, links and music with friends more seamless with Messages. Apple is making the new API access to developers. Apple is extending SharePoint beyond FaceTime to Messages. “Now when you find something you want to share, like a movie on Disney Plus, you can kick off share, play right there and enjoy together chatting in messages,” said Apple.

Focus: Focus is now linked to the Lock Screen. Users can now tie a lock screen wallpaper and widgets to a particular Focus. With Focus filters, apple-like Calendar, Safari, Mail, and Messages can display only the content that is relevant to a user’s Focus.

iCloud Shared Photo Library: This new feature gives families a new way to share photos seamlessly with a separate iCloud library that up to six users can collaborate, contribute, and enjoy. They can choose to share existing photos from their personal libraries or share based on a start date or people in the photos. Users can also choose to send photos to the Shared Library automatically using a new toggle in the Camera app.

Every user in the Shared Photo Library has access to add, delete, edit, or favourite the shared photos or videos.

Mail: Apple has added some notable changes to Mail. They can schedule emails ahead of time and there’s also a moment to cancel delivery of a message before it reaches a recipient’s inbox. Mail detects if the user forgot to include an important part of their message, such as an attachment.

Users also have the option to resurface a message at any date and time with Remind Later and follow up suggestions automatically. It includes the biggest overhaul to search as users can start seeing recent emails, contacts, documents, and links the moment they begin to search for emails.

Live Text and Visual Look Up Enhancements: Live Text uses on-device intelligence to recognise text in images across iOS. It is now being expanded to include video. Users can now pause a video on any frame and interact with the text. They can quickly convert currency, translate text and more.

iOS 16

Visual Look Up gets a new feature that allows users to tap and hold on the subject of an image to lift it from the background and place it in apps like Messages. Visual Look Up also expands to recognise birds, insects, and statues.

Safari: Safari gets new shared Tab Groups to share a collection of websites with friends and family. There’s a new passkey, which is a unique digital key that is secure, never stored on a web server, and stays on the device. It uses Touch ID or Face ID for biometric verification, and iCloud Keychain to sync across iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple TV with end-to-end encryption.

Siri: Siri gets the ability to run shortcuts as soon as an app is downloaded without requiring upfront setup. Users can add emoji when sending a message, choose to send messages automatically, and hang up phone and FaceTime calls completely hands-free by simply saying “Hey Siri, hang up.”

Apple is also bringing improvements to Apple Maps, Wallet, Home, Dictation, Fitness, Health, News, Game Center, and Accecibility. 

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