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Apple’s iOS 15 Has a Lot of New Features

SMS backup

Apple’s iOS 15 might be the best OS update by the company by now. The update allows users to play with a slew of interesting features and gives them more customization options.  This includes a simpler way to use Safari, preconfigured modes for changing your home screen arrangement quickly, and major FaceTime improvements.

How to Install iOS 15

Make a backup of your iPhone before upgrading to iOS 15. Although the final version may not have as many flaws as the beta, losing all of your data for the sake of fancy new features isn’t worth it, so make sure you backup your data with apps like SMS backup.

Unless you’re installing it on a computer, plug your iPhone into a charger and make sure you’re connected to Wi-Fi. Then go to Settings > General > Software Update to see what’s new. After that, go to iOS 15 and select Download and Install. Once that’s done, press ‘Install Now,’ and your iPhone will begin updating automatically. You’re good to go once it completes the process and the device restarts. It will take some time, so don’t do it when you need to use your phone urgently.

Now onto the features!

An Upgraded FaceTime

Apple’s video-calling app has been updated, bringing it closer to videoconferencing providers like Zoom and Google Meet in terms of capabilities. For starters, there’s a multiperson chat grid layout that functions similarly to Zoom’s conference calls. There’s a Portrait option, which works similarly to the Camera app’s Portrait mode in that it keeps your face in focus while blurring off your cluttered room in the backdrop. You can also add FaceTime links to your calendar so that you may share and invite others to a video conference. Even if they’re using an Android phone or a Windows laptop, those with the link can join these calls using Google Chrome or Microsoft’s Edge browser.

FaceTime’s use of spatial audio to space out noises based on where your friends are on the grid view of a group call, making it feel more like you’re all in the same room, makes video chats sound more real as well. There are also two additional microphone options: Voice Isolation and Wide Spectrum. The former will cancel out any background noise, leaving only your voice to be heard on the other end. The latter will attempt to take up any sounds in your immediate vicinity.

SharePlay

With SharePlay in iOS 15.1, you can FaceTim with anyone and share movies, music, Fitness+ workouts, and your screen. Do you want to listen to a new album with a friend at the same time? You can play music from Apple Music in your room. Perhaps you’d like to video chat while watching a movie with your long-distance partner? Easy. You may simultaneously AirPlay the movie to your TV to view it on the large screen.

Apple claims that any developer with a content streaming app can add support, while services like Disney+, HBOMax, ESPN+, and TikTok are already on board. The developer has a lot of control over the implementation. For example, if both video call users are attempting to watch a movie on Disney+, Disney might offer the other user a free trial, enable anyone to watch one free movie per month via SharePlay, or altogether prohibit access if neither side has an account. It’s entirely up to the developer.

Brand New Maps

Apple Maps 2.0, which was debuted last year, is now available in four new countries: Spain, Portugal, Italy, and Australia. In iOS 15, Apple’s map data becomes considerably more precise. In commercial districts, you’ll discover more street-level data, elevation information in cities, and bespoke graphics for icons like the Golden Gate Bridge. When driving, Maps now displays highway interchanges in 3D, giving you a better understanding of which lane you should be in. These capabilities will also be available in CarPlay later in 2021.

If you take public transportation, Maps will tell you when to get off, and if you’re unsure which way to go once off the bus or outside the subway station, simply aim your phone at the buildings in front of you and Apple’s augmented reality will send you in the right direction. It’s similar to Google Maps’ AR Live View.

Health App

You can now share your health data with family members or carers using Apple’s Health App. That way, they may quickly monitor metrics and receive alerts if any strange trends emerge over time. There’s also a new Walking Steadiness metric that assesses your danger of falling on a regular basis.

You can also use the app to keep your Covid-19 test results and immunization records. If the medical facility or vaccination provider does not offer this function, you can still download the record via a QR code or browser and save it in the Health app to retrieve it whenever you want. If your vaccination record was successfully entered, the app will now create a vaccination card in your Wallet app, which you can easily flash before entering shops or restaurants.

iCloud+

This new feature is available to everyone who already has an iCloud subscription at no additional cost. It enhances HomeKit Secure Video support and includes a feature called iCloud Private Relay, which encrypts all internet traffic leaving your device so no one can see your data, similar to a virtual private network.

The aforementioned are just some of the numerous features that come with the iOS 15 update. The update has revamped the iPhone experience and made it more seamless. We can’t wait and see what next Apple has in store for the next OS. 

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