iOS 15 beta on iPhone: 3 things you absolutely need to know before you install

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CNET 04 July, 2021 - 04:17am 65 views

Should I download IOS 15 public beta?

As always, we never recommend downloading a beta version of any software on your primary device due to bugs. In the case of iOS 15, you should only download this public beta if you have a second iPhone that you can use for testing -- not on your main phone. CNETApple's iOS 15 beta is here, but watch out for these bugs

You may find apps not working properly, poor battery life, device crashes, and features that don't do what they're supposed to. Fortunately, you can restore your iPhone or iPad to the previous version of iOS.

If you made an archived backup before you installed the beta, you can remove the ‌‌iOS 15‌ beta and restore the backup. If you didn't make a backup, you can still downgrade, but you won't be able to restore your device to its original state before you upgraded.

One you've followed the above steps, you can restore a backup of your device from ‌iOS 14‌ or iPadOS 14 using your Mac or iCloud.

Apple Card Family, podcast subscriptions, and upcoming Apple Music support for Spatial Audio and Lossless.

Learn all about Apple's new location trackers.

Everything to know about the Apple Silicon M1 Chip

New features for FaceTime calls, tools to reduce distractions, a new notifications experience, added privacy features, complete redesigns for Safari, Weather, and Maps, and more.

Updates for Safari, FaceTime, and many other apps, Universal Control to let a single mouse or trackpad control multiple devices, new Shortcuts app, machine-learning Live Text detection and Visual Lookup, and more.

Redesigned with flat edges, Apple silicon, more ports, improved display, no Touch Bar, and the return of MagSafe charging.

Rumored design changes include shorter stems like current AirPods Pro, but without advanced features like active noise cancellation.

Read full article at CNET

Apple iPadOS 15 Public Beta hands-on: 3 little things that make a big difference

The Indian Express 03 July, 2021 - 10:36am

For years, the iPad has served me well as my work machine. In all those years, Apple too has improved iPad software to make it adapt better to the work needs of users like me. But the thing is the iPad isn’t Mac and the iPadOS isn’t macOS. And that could be the gap Apple is trying to plug with iPadOS 15, the latest version of its tablet software that brings improved multitasking features to the iPad.

The iPadOS 15 isn’t a massive update, but it does show a clear direction where the device is increasingly becoming a laptop replacement for many, especially in the current remote work environment. Even though Apple will officially release iPadOS 15 in the fall, we tried the public beta version of the new OS update. Here are our first impressions.

I use both the iPad and Mac for work, and the latter is a clear winner when it comes to multitasking. With iPadOS 15, Apple is taking a small step at refining the multitasking experience on the iPad. So now Apple is adding a multitasking menu at the top of the screen with three buttons — a full-screen button, a Split View button, and a Slide Over button. The Split View slides your existing app to the left and lets you choose the second app from your home screen.

For me, though, the new multitasking button works better than the iPadOS 14’s gestures that let you put two apps side-by-side. I think this approach is a better way to find the app you wish to open, though I did initially struggle to get used to this new arrangement. Then there is a “shelf” feature that is useful for managing multiple windows of the same app. While I don’t expect a more Mac-like multitasking experience on the iPad anytime soon, for now, Apple seems to be focusing on smaller updates.

One of my favourite features in iPadOS 15 is Quick Note, and I’ll tell you why. There are times when I am reading News or going through my Twitter timeline, and suddenly I spot something interesting that I would like to highlight and save for future reference. It happens to me all the time. Now with Quick Note, if I highlight a text on a page in Safari, it can be clipped to my note and that text stays highlighted as a tiny square in the bottom-right corner, even if I open that page three months later.

The best part is all Quick Notes you create are automatically saved to the Notes app. It’s a useful feature for people like me who spend a lot of time researching a subject. All you need to do is swipe up from a corner and start writing a quick note, either with a keyboard or Apple Pencil.

I always find widgets useful for some reason because they make the Home Screen more effective. You can edit them, move them, and stack them the way you want. Android has had these for about a decade, and last year Apple allowed you to add and resize widgets on the home screen of the iPhone. Now it’s the iPad’s turn. Widgets on the iPad are no different on the iPhone except for their size because of the larger display.

I can place these widgets anywhere on the iPad home screen and Apple has even added bigger-sized widgets keeping the iPad’s screen real estate in mind. Widgets, in my opinion, make more sense on the iPad than on the iPhone. The App Library too is coming on the iPad. You can hide and reorder app pages too, just like on the iPhone. Both Widgets and App Library are part of home screen improvements.

While the iPadOS 15 is in the right direction, it still hasn’t solved the core issues many pro users have with the software like the use of an app dock to access multitasking and the ability to open more than two apps side-by-side. With the iPad’s screen size continues to increase and the tablet getting more powerful with the M1 chip, it’s time for Apple to elevate the iPadOS experience.

Maybe the future versions of iPadOS might bring a more Mac-like multitasking experience for users who really want it, this year’s update focuses on smaller but useful functions. In fact, there are a lot of new features in iPadOS 15 I haven’t discussed in my first impressions. FaceTime changes, Focus mode, the all-new Safari, an iMessage redesign, and a new version of the Translate app will also be included in iOS 15. I won’t say I am blown away with iPadOS 15 but sometimes the smallest step in the right direction ends up being the biggest step.

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iOS 15: How to use FaceTime on Android, Focus mode and other features you need to know

CNET 03 July, 2021 - 10:36am

Apple announced iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 in early June, detailing new features and capabilities set to arrive on everyone compatible iPhone and iPad this fall. We're a couple of months away from an official release, but if you're feeling brave you can get a taste of the new software by joining the public beta

The installation process is easy peasy, but testing unreleased software isn't for everyone. Apps will break and some features simply won't work. That said, whether you've decided to install the beta or not, there are plenty of features 

With iOS 15 and iPadOS 15, not only will you be able to FaceTime someone who uses Android, but you'll have new Do Not Disturb tools at your disposal, and notifications will be less of a headache. Here are six of the many features coming to iOS 15 that you're sure to love. 

However, most of us spent a year during the pandemic using Zoom on a regular basis, Apple is finally expanding FaceTime to include Android and Windows owners

Instead of releasing an app for either platform, you'll send a FaceTime link via your preferred non-iMessage platform to your Android or PC using contacts who can then use a browser for the video call. To create a link, open FaceTime and tap either the Create Link or New FaceTime button at the top of the screen. Create Link will automatically generate a FaceTime link and open the Share Sheet for you to pick how you want to send the link to someone else, while New FaceTime will ask you to enter a contact's name and then send the link through Messages and open the FaceTime call on your iPhone or iPad. 

The person who receives the FaceTime link will need to open it, enter their name when prompted and then tap Join after previewing their video. 

Better late than never, right? 

Forget a cluttered notification tray. iOS 15 attempts to fix it. 

Google Lens has been around for a while now, using your phone's camera to identify text in a photo, translate foreign languages or identify real-world items like animals or plants. And now, your iPhone is getting its own version of Lens called Live Text. 

There are multiple ways to use Live Text. You can use it before taking a photo in the viewfinder by tapping on the Live Text button that shows up, or you can go into the Photos app and open any picture in your library. Whether you enabled Live Text before taking the photo or opened an old picture, you should be able to highlight any text, including items like phone numbers, email addresses or street addresses, and then share, call or use that information however you want. I haven't stopped using Live Text since I installed iOS 15 a few weeks ago. 

The iPhone or iPad's notification tray can look overwhelming at the end of the day as your phone receives countless alerts from random apps. With iOS 15, there's a new Notification Summary feature that's designed to help tidy up your notifications. The first time an app asks for permission to send you alerts right away, or if they should be included in your summaries. 

To customize your notification summary, go to Settings > Notifications > Scheduled Summary. You can add as many scheduled summaries as you want, and pick the exact time they'll be present under the Schedule section. Select Apps in Summary to view all of your installed apps, including the average number of notifications you receive from each app daily. Slide the switch to the On position for each app you want to delegate to your summary. 

When it's time for a summary to show up on your lock screen or in your notification shade, you'll see the number of alerts you've received in a clean preview card that even shows you previews of some of the alerts. Tap on the number to expand the card and see your individual alerts. It's a welcome addition to the iPhone and iPad if you ask me. 

Focus modes make it easier to pay attention to what's important. 

Do Not Disturb is a convenient feature when you want your phone or tablet to be completely silent and avoid any interruptions, but the all-or-nothing approach isn't ideal in every situation. 

Apple added a new Focus mode in iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 that takes DND to the next level. You can create custom Focus profiles that will allow only the apps you select to alert you while keeping the other apps quiet. 

You can even select which contacts you'll still receive alerts, be it messages or phone calls. Everyone else who messages you while you have a Focus profile enabled will see a status notification letting them know you're currently busy and you'll see the message at a later time. 

Shared With You makes it easy to find anything that a friend has sent you in Messages. 

Whenever a friend or family member shares a photo with you in Messages or sends a link to a recipe you've been bugging them for, it's good practice to save the shared item right away. Otherwise, you'll be forced to scroll back through your conversation history to find it. It's a hassle. 

Shared With You is a new feature that is debuting in iOS 15 that will make it easier to find, well, whatever's been shared with you. More specifically, your iPhone and iPad will now automatically show you photos and videos that a close friend has shared with you in the Photos app. Links sent to you will be present in a new Shared With You section on the homepage in Safari. The same can be said about links to news articles in the Apple News app and TV shows and movies in the Apple TV app. 

Better yet? You don't have to do anything for it to start working. There's no setup, no remembering to toggle a button. After updating to iOS 15, it'll start showing you all the stuff you used to lose track of and forget. 

I'm most excited about the Photos integration. I have so many pictures in conversations that I should have been saving to my Photos library, but now that will automatically be done for me. 

Companies use these tools to measure and track if emails are being opened, links are being clicked and other important metrics. However, some people don't like the idea of being tracked. 

So Apple built a new privacy tool into its Mail app. You can find it by going to Settings > Mail > Privacy Protection, which should be on by default. Mail Privacy Protection hides your IP address so the person who sent the email can't see where you're located, and it also stops the tracking pixels from letting the sender know you've opened it. 

There are plenty -- and I mean plenty -- more features in iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 that I haven't even touched on yet. If you're brave enough, you can install it right now, but I wouldn't recommend it quite yet. Until then, you can learn more about iOS 14 and its hidden features. There are more than enough to hold you over. 

5 new iOS 15 features in the Public Beta that make the biggest impact

Digital Trends 03 July, 2021 - 10:36am

Most of the new features introduced during Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference 2021 are available, with five making the biggest impact on me so far. Here’s a closer look at how they perform.

Safari has really changed, and upon opening it for the first time, I was very confused as to where to find anything. The search bar, traditionally at the top of all browser screens, is now at the bottom of the screen in a floating panel. It’s less intrusive and provides a lot more screen for webpages, but it’s very easy to miss the first time you open the app.

When you tap the URL, the search bar pops up, with access to tabs, bookmarks, Read Later, and other options gained through just two buttons. It’s all very minimalist, but the larger viewing area is very welcome, as is the speed. Safari has always been fast on an iPhone, but in iOS 15, it absolutely flies. I can see people swapping to Safari from Chrome or their other regular browser after trying it in iOS 15.

The Do Not Disturb feature has evolved in iOS 15 to become Focus, which has gained its own space right at the top of the Settings screen. In it, you can set up times where you want to concentrate on work or personal time, with options to exclude people and apps from interrupting you, or to allow notifications to be delivered. You can also add “time sensitive” notifications to the green list, which includes alerts from home security equipment or delivery apps.

It’s very easy to set up, and there’s plenty of customization options, ranging from dimming the lock screen to only letting you see a single Home page when Focus is active. This is an interesting feature, but needs some adjustment to be really helpful. Say you’re working and only want to see messages from Outlook and Teams, along with access to the browser and camera. If you create a separate home screen with only those apps on it, you can force the iPhone to only show that home screen and no others when Focus is active.

The problem is, you’ve then got a single home screen with only Outlook and Teams on it all the time. It’s unfortunate you can’t make it a Focus-only screen, with the icons integrated back into a normal home screen when the feature is switched off. Focus is activated using a button in the Control Center, where you can choose which Focus mode to switch on, or create an entirely new Focus mode that suits a situation other than work or personal time.

It’ll take some time to get exactly the right setup and to create separate Focus systems, plus I’d expect to tweak the settings a few times before you’re happy with the results, but having this level of control over your phone is really welcome. Focus will be worth the time you have to invest in it, especially since work hours have blended into personal hours a lot over the past year as many of us work from home more.

The standard Weather app has been given a redesign. It contains most of the same information as before, just presented in a new way. For example, the wind speed and direction is shown in a compass-like tile with an arrow pointing in the direction of the wind and the speed displayed in the middle. This style is repeated for rainfall, humidity, air pressure, and more.

New look animated backgrounds reflecting the weather conditions are very attractive, with richer, deeper colors, and more obvious images. There’s a big sun complete with lens flare when it’s sunny, and thick gray clouds when it’s cloudy. In iOS 14, the images and animations were more subtle. Conveniently, there’s also a general outlook for the region included, to save you from scanning through the hourly forecast.

Apple’s new Optical Character Recognition (OCR) feature is really intriguing, and technically very impressive, but it doesn’t seem to be fully working in Public Beta Version 2. It allows you to capture text with the camera and insert it into messages, emails, or Notes. Text can also be grabbed from photos in your gallery, screenshots, or even online.

It’s incredibly fast. In Facebook Messenger, long press the message line and a “Text from Camera” option is shown. Tap it and a viewfinder window opens over the keyboard. Show it some text and it instantly grabs it and pastes it into the Messenger window. In my brief tests, it has a 100% hit rate, so there’s no need to edit what it captures before sending. It also works in the same way in the Notes app.

Capturing text from images online is similar to how you’d copy and paste text normally — just tap and hold, then choose Copy from the pop-up menu. It works best when the text isn’t too small and hasn’t been formatted in an unusual way. It struggled with a very detailed restaurant menu, for example, but was fine with the explainer text about social distancing rules from the same image.

However, I couldn’t get the feature to work in the camera app. It’s supposed to show a Live Text button when the camera recognizes text in the viewfinder, but it has so far refused to do so. The languages available are also limited at the moment. Live Text doesn’t recognizes Korean or Japanese at the moment, for example, but is fine with Chinese, French, Italian, German, Spanish, and Portuguese.

I haven’t really been able to try out Shareplay much, and if you’re in the same situation as me, you won’t be able to either. Shareplay is Apple’s answer to many of us not being able to watch movies or listen to music in person with friends recently, as it lets you share your screen with others and watch or listen virtually instead.

It’s operational in the latest beta version of iOS 15, but to use it, you have to have friends with an iPhone because it’s activated through a FaceTime video call. It’s only compatible with Apple TV and iTunes content for now, but we expect other apps to be available when iOS 15 launches later in the year. It’s also dependent on both parties meeting regional requirements.

When you start a FaceTime call, there’s a small button showing a screen and a person. Tap that to start screen sharing, and then open Apple’s TV app or Apple Music. I couldn’t share a movie purchased through iTunes in the U.K. on a FaceTime call to the U.S., and even Apple TV Original shows wouldn’t play across regions. Music did play, though, whether it was stored locally or purchased through Apple Music. Operation is also a little confusing, with screen sharing having to be accepted before content plays, but this requirement not being immediately clear.

It’s a typically Apple feature, in that you and those around you have to be part of the club. If your friend has a Galaxy S21 Ultra, they won’t be able to join your watch party. Their messages of shame will appear in a green bubble, too, of course. However, when it does work, the potential is obvious. You can hear the music and still hold a conversation, and the album art is shown alongside both video images (blacked out for privacy in our images above). There’s definitely fun to be had with Shareplay, but it’s unfortunate the ingenious feature is hobbled by regional restrictions.

This is not the final version of iOS, and while it’s certainly stable and usable enough to test — FaceTime when using Shareplay is the only app that crashed on me — I wouldn’t say it’s ready for everyday use just yet. In my time trying it out, it’s obviously using a lot more battery power than I would expect, indicating it still needs refining. I wouldn’t recommend installing it on your everyday phone for this reason alone.

Don’t expect any major changes regarding the way iOS looks, either. There are some subtle changes to various apps, such as the Information display in the Photo Gallery, and to the way notifications appear on the lock screen. I haven’t used iOS 15 long enough to see how the new Notification Summary works yet.

Apple’s iOS 15 introduces several useful, well-designed, and speedy new features that already work well in this early version of the software, and there’s plenty more to come. Consider it a refined version of iOS 14 rather than a big step forward, but there are several features that still make a big impact whether it’s due to impressive tech or everyday convenience.

If you’ve got a spare iPhone and want to install the Public Beta version of iOS 15, we’ve got instructions on how to do so.

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How to install iOS 15 public beta on iPhone

How To Do It All 03 July, 2021 - 10:36am

Poll: Are you installing the iOS 15, iPadOS 15, watchOS 8, macOS Monterey, or tvOS 15 public betas?

9to5Mac 03 July, 2021 - 10:36am

- Jul. 2nd 2021 11:31 am PT

Apple this week released the first public betas of its upcoming operating systems iOS 15, iPadOS 15, watchOS 8, macOS Monterey, and tvOS 15. Are you planning to test these new systems?

Last week, Apple released beta 2 of iOS 15, iPadOS 15, and watchOS 8 for developers. Now, the same build has been available to the public to test it out.

It’s still unclear whether, going forward, Apple will release public betas a few hours after developer betas, the following day, or even the next week. Apple has seeded its upcoming operating system through the Beta Software Program for a few years now.

Although it’s a great opportunity for those who want to try the new functions of the operating system before its final release, betas in general usually have a lot of bugs, apps crashing, and battery draining super fast, so it’s not suggested for the average user to install them in his main devices.

iOS 15 brings a handful of new features with SharePlay, improvements in FaceTime, Messages, and even a redesigned Weather app. One of the best functions is called “Focus,” which helps users focus on what matters the most depending on their tasks. Learn more about iOS 15 here.

iPadOS 15 on the other hand finally brings the App Library and widgets to the Home Screen. It’s also easier to use Split View and Slide Over in iPadOS 15. You can learn more about iPad’s upcoming operating system here.

watchOS 8, for example, focuses more than ever on the user’s well-being. With a new Mindfulness app, the Watch reminds you to take some time to breathe and think about your day. It also receives a new Find My app with Items support, a Focus section, and a new Portraits Watch Face. Learn more about watchOS 8 here.

Lesser promoted, tvOS 15 public beta is also available, and you can learn more about it here.

On the 1st of July, Apple also released the public beta of macOS Monterey. With a redesigned Safari and focus on privacy, you can learn more about it here.

Are you installing any of the new public betas? Vote in the poll and tell us in the comment section below.

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Brazilian tech Journalist. Author at 9to5Mac. Previously at tv globo, the main TV broadcaster in Latin America.

Got tips, feedback, or questions? jose@9to5mac.com

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