Apple iOS 16.1: iPhone Users Urged To Update For Dazzling New Features
Apple iOS 16.1 is here and has been much-anticipated. Here’s how to install it, who it’s for and what’s in the update.
Make Forbes your destination for all-things iOS. Read full details of what’s in the release from me the moment it lands. Kate O’Flaherty looks at the security considerations of each new release. And then read Gordon Kelly’s analysis of whether you ought to install or wait.
Which iPhones can run iOS 16.1?
The new software will run on all iPhones from iPhone 8 onwards. To be exact, that’s iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X, iPhone Xs, iPhone Xs Max, iPhone Xr, iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max, iPhone SE second generation, iPhone 12, iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 12 Pro, iPhone 12 Pro Max, iPhone 13, iPhone 13 mini, iPhone 13 Pro, iPhone 13 Pro Max, iPhone SE, iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus, iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max. And breathe.
For iPads, you need iPadOS which, for the first time, is on a different release schedule than iOS. The first version is iPadOS 16.1, also just-released.
How to get it
You’ll have done this before but just in case: open the Settings app on the iPhone and then choose General, then Software Update. Once you’ve clicked on Download and Install, it’ll do everything for you.
What’s in the release
There’s a lot to unpack here. First of all, the new iPhone software is timed not alongside just the new iPad release, iPadOS 16.1, but also the latest software for the Mac, macOS Ventura. There are bug fixes, of course, but also lots of new stuff.
First, there’s iCloud Shared Photo Library which means that you can share photos with friends and family members easily. You and up to five other people can add, editor or remove photos in a shared library.
Live Activities is a very cool feature and it now expands to third-party apps. It means that as you’re waiting for a food delivery order, a ride share or your next flight, the iPhone display will update in real-time on the iPhone lock screen—or in the Dynamic Island if you have an iPhone 14 Pro or iPhone 14 Pro Max. Apps like Flighty, a brilliant flight tracking experience, can take advantage of this with iOS 16.1. Then there’s Clean Energy Charging (for the U.S. only) which is designed to help you ensure that your iPhone recharges when the grid is using cleaner energy sources.
If you’ve always wanted to use Apple Fitness+, you can now subscribe to Apple Fitness+ without Apple Watch. Of course, you can’t see your real-time heart rate and calories metrics live on screen, as you can with the Watch, but you get access to nearly all the workout and meditation videos which you can watch on your iPhone, iPad or Apple TV.
Apple Card Savings Account is a new savings account for Apple Card users—again, this is for U.S. users only. Dynamic Island now gets integration with Reachability, the feature that lets you use the iPhone more easily with one hand by bringing the top half of the display down to the bottom. Wallet now allows key sharing, so those virtual keys that work for cars, hotel rooms and more can be shared with others. Matter is a smart home connectivity standard designed to make smart home accessories work together more easily and it’s supported in iOS 16.1.
Bug fixes include an issue where deleted conversations were still appearing in the conversations list in Messages. There’s also a fix for CarPlay not connecting when using a VPN app and for Dynamic Island content not being available when Reachability is invoked.
Apple’s changelog follows:
iCloud Shared Photo Library
- Separate library for seamlessly sharing photos and videos with up to five other people
- Setup rules allow you to easily contribute past photos based on a start date or people in the photos when you set up or join a library
- Library filters for quickly switching between viewing the Shared Library, your Personal Library or both libraries together
- Shared edits and permissions let everyone add, edit, favourite, caption and delete photos
- Sharing toggle in Camera lets you choose to send photos you take straight to the Shared Library, or enable a setting to share automatically when other participants are detected nearby using Bluetooth
- Live Activities from third-party apps are available in the Dynamic Island and on the Lock Screen for iPhone 14 Pro models
- Apple Fitness+ is supported on iPhone even if you don’t have an Apple Watch
- Key sharing enables you to securely share car, hotel room and other keys in Wallet using messaging apps such as Messages and WhatsApp
- Matter, the new smart home connectivity standard, is supported, enabling a wide variety of smart home accessories to work together across ecosystems
- Reader controls are automatically hidden as you start reading
This update also includes bug fixes for your iPhone:
- Deleted conversations may appear in the conversations list in Messages
- Dynamic Island content is not available when using Reachability
- CarPlay may fail to connect when using a VPN app
Some features may not be available in all regions or on all Apple devices. For information on the security content of Apple software updates, please visit this website: support.apple.com/kb/HT201222