Following an extended app testing cycle that began in February, iOS 14.5 will be available for iPhone and iPad the week of April 26th seven months after iOS 14 was released.
iOS 14.5 is a much-anticipated update for iPhones that is currently in beta 6 and available to developers. The iOS 14.5 update is scheduled to reach all users later this year.
Despite the fact that it’s a .5 release, this is a major software update that brings a range of new features to all iOS devices. The most recent software update adds a slew of new features, including two new Siri voices, enhanced app tracking security, a revamped Podcasts experience, and more.
Here’s a rundown of all the features that are supposed to be included in iOS 14.5:
Siri has been updated
Apple is upgrading its voice assistant with two new voices, according to the current beta. Apple is preparing to release two new Siri voices, one for female users and the other for male users, both of which are optimized for US English users. These will be in addition to the Siri voices that are already available.
If you already have iOS 14.5 beta installed, go to Settings > Siri & Search > Siri Voice to change your Siri’s voice.
The latter update comes after a United Nations report in 2019 stated that by having Siri’s voice female by default, Apple reinforces gender disparity and sends the message that “women are obliging, docile, and eager-to-please helpers.”
Battery health reporting has been re-calibrated
Unexpected battery drain behavior or, in a limited number of cases, decreased peak performance capability are symptoms of this issue. Apple emphasizes on its help page that this inaccurate battery health reporting does not indicate a problem with the battery itself.
Users can see a warning in Settings > Battery > Battery Health as the battery health reporting system is recalibrating. During daily charge cycles, full capacity and peak output capability are re-calibrated, which can take a few weeks.
During recalibration, the displayed maximum capacity percentage will not change. While peak performance capability may have been updated, most users are unlikely to notice. If you have a previous damaged battery alert, it will be removed after you update to iOS 14.5.
The recalibration message will be removed for most users until the recalibration is complete. The battery service alert will appear if the battery health monitoring shows that your battery health has substantially deteriorated. “An Apple Authorized Service Provider can replace the battery free of charge to restore full performance and capacity,” Apple says in that case.
Unlock your iPhone using your Apple Watch
Apple iPhone users will be able to unlock their smartphones via Apple watch while wearing a face mask, according to the iOS 14.5 beta 1. To use the feature, users will need an Apple Watch, which, according to the changelog in the latest iOS 14.5 beta 1, should be upgraded to watchOS 7.4.
As Face ID senses a mask on a face, Apple claims the iPhone can unlock using your Apple Watch. The Apple Watch must be nearby or on the wrist for this to work. This is a significant improvement over the iOS 13.5 feature, which allowed users to bypass the Face ID prompt when wearing a face mask and instead be taken to the passcode screen.
App Tracking Transparency
Apple’s latest App Tracking Transparency functionality will be included in iOS 14.5. This beta will be a last reminder to software developers to follow the latest guidelines. The function will be accessible via the system settings menu, where users will be able to see a list of apps that have requested permission to monitor data.
Users will be able to select which applications to monitor their data through various apps or websites operated by different companies using this feature.
Apple launched its own website last month to demonstrate how its own apps collect data on users.
With Apple Arcade becoming increasingly popular, iOS 14.5 will provide support for the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series S controllers. Neither of these new controllers is supported in the most recent versions of iOS or iPadOS, but 14.5 adds support for both.
This follows Apple’s announcement last year that it was collaborating with Microsoft to fund Xbox Series X controllers.
Includes over 200 new emojis and shortcut actions
Over 200 new emojis will be included in iOS 14.5 along with a new AirPods Max-inspired headphone design. According to Emojipedia, the new emojis include a face exhaling, a face in clouds, a heart on fire, a mending heart, a face with spiral eyes, and a variety of people with beards, among other things.
New shortcut behavior such as “Take Screenshot,” “Orientation Lock,” and “Voice & Data mode” were also suggested in iOS 14.5 beta 2.
According to reports, iOS 14.5 will also address the iPhone’s green tint problem.
Update to Apple Music
New swipe gestures and pop-over menus for other controls will be available in the Apple Music app on iOS 14.5 to enable users to easily add songs to their list. Apple will also enable you to use Siri to set third-party music streaming services such as Spotify and YouTube Music as your default music player. Siri currently uses Apple Music as the default music player.
How to sign up for the iOS 14.5 beta software program
You can enroll your device in Apple Beta Software Program if you want to check out iOS 14.5 or iPadOS 14.5. If you’re still using the public beta of iOS 14, go to Settings > Software Update to get the new version. It should go without saying that this is a developer update with its own set of risks.
In beta updates, there is a high likelihood of bugs and glitches. Before you enter the beta software program, make sure you have a complete backup of your data.