Saturday, December 4, 2021

iOS 15: best new features in Apple’s iOS 12 update

Apple has released its 10th major software update for iPhone and iPad. iOS 15, as it is called, finally takes power away from Siri, adds Animoji, new features in Photos and iCloud, a redesigned Safari and boasts a new version of Apple Music.

Although this update is focused entirely on iPhone and iPad apps, iOS 15 is pretty much the same. You’ll get it on either iOS 12.2.1 or iOS 15.1.1 (the iOS 15 update includes all new features) and you can get updates on the desktop on Mac and iOS 12.2.1 and iOS 15.1.1.

You can get a sense of iOS 15’s features by watching the video below.

Here are some of the best tips, tricks and features of iOS 15 that you’ll notice immediately.

Siri has a few extra skills

Apple built Siri into iPhone and iPad so you can use her more for certain things. Siri has undergone a bit of a facelift in iOS 15, with a brand new Home app. Use the Home app to play music, place a call, look up address information and find recommendations. It also acts as a home screen launcher.

Sometimes it’s just nice to know your phone’s voice-controlled smart assistant is helping out.

You can change how you use Siri in iOS 15

Another feature from iOS 12.2.1 is an “auto complete” feature in Siri. For example, if you asked Siri a question and then checked your phone, she will save that information and then perform the action when you ask her for it again. The feature works in Wolfram Alpha and Apple maps.

When opening iOS 15, open the Controls app and change Siri from a single device to multiple devices and Siri will do the same things for multiple devices. You can also now speak your questions directly into Siri, which is handy for finding directions if you’re trying to say a whole street address.

Organise those photos

One of the most notable iOS 15 features is the ability to organize photos and share them with other people by using your phone. With the settings app open, tick the “Move photos and videos to a folder and tag them” box and share the folder with people. Once the folder is shared, you can then navigate your collection and send people your photos with just a single tap.

Getting a handle on photos is important, as seeing everything can feel overwhelming.

Animoji works on all iOS devices

Animoji have been around on iOS since iOS 12.1, but the latest version adds support for all iPhones and iPads. From your iPhone’s keyboard, tap on the status bar and you’ll see all your available faces. You can then select them, swap them, and record your own custom voice message.

Find the people you’re interested in

If you’re looking for a new face to add to your Animoji collection, one of your contacts could be your go-to person. You can swipe across on iOS Photos to browse your contact’s faces and add them to your Apple’s Animoji pool.

To quickly search for your friends, you can swipe on their profile picture and swipe down from the top left-hand corner to show a list of different options. From here, you can tap on the options you like, then tap on a contact to immediately get a list of faces associated with that one person. Tap on the person’s name to see more faces that look like that person.

Pressing and holding on the camera icon in the status bar gives you the option to switch to iPhone X or iPhone 8.

App menus have some big new elements

The iOS menu system has been a constant source of criticism since it was introduced. Some of the icons, most notably the Control Center, could often be out of touch with the way you use your iPhone. Now, there are very few menus that have a dodgy look to them, making navigating through your iPhone a much faster experience.

The share charm can now be removed from the menu bar. Swipe up on the signal bar from the home screen and you’ll find the charm in a horizontal white line.

You can now have the Photos app replaced with the Activity app, available as a folder in the Control Center. Swipe up from the Home app, you’ll find an Activity folder. You can select an Activity, right-click on it, and then choose “Create Activity” to start using it.

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