Apple released the new iOS 15.4 with the ability to unlock iPhone in a mask
Yesterday Apple released iOS 15.4 and iPadOS 15.4, the fourth major updates to the iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 operating systems that were first released in September. iOS and iPadOS 15.4 are huge updates that bring quite a few new useful features to the iPhone and iPad.
Face Mask Identification.
In iOS 15.4, it's now possible to unlock an iPhone with a mask without additional hardware, such as the Apple Watch. Apple warns that full face identification is a safer option, but Face ID mask is now available.
"Face ID" with a mask can be enabled after updating to iOS 15.4, and is designed to use the area around your eyes for authentication purposes. It works with glasses, but is not compatible with sunglasses and you must look at "iPhone" to unlock it while wearing a mask.
Face ID with a mask is limited to iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 models , so it's not available on iPhone 11 . Unlike the "iPhone" unlock feature, which uses the Apple Watch to authenticate when you wear a mask, "Face ID" with the mask option can be used to authenticate Apple Pay transactions and log into third-party apps.
Spring iOS updates often bring new emoji characters, and iOS 15.4 is no exception. The update introduces support for Emoji 14, adding 37 emoji and 75 skin tone additions for a total of 112 new characters.
New faces include a melting face, a greeting face, a face with eyes open and a hand covering the mouth, a face with an eye peeking out, a face with a diagonal mouth and a face with a dotted line, and new emoticons include biting lips and bubbles.
There are several new hand emojis, such as heart hands, right hand, left hand, palm down hand, palm up hand, hand with index finger and thumb crossed, index finger pointing at the viewer, and an update of the handshake emojis.
The egg nest, empty nest, x-ray, crutch, playground slide, wheel, life preserver, hamsa, mirror ball, jar, ID card and low battery are new items, and plants and animals will include corals and lotuses. As for fantasy characters, we can expect new troll emojis, and eggs, beans, and pouring liquid make up the new food items.
Disabling notification for personal automations in shortcuts
For personal automations set up in the Shortcuts app, there's a new option called "Notify at Startup" that allows you to turn notifications on and off for activated shortcuts. With this option, you may not receive notifications when a shortcut is activated, which was not possible in earlier versions of iOS 15.
Notify at startup is only displayed when the Prompt before startup option is disabled.
The Shortcuts app also supports adding, removing, or prompting tags with reminders.
Apple Map Widget.
The Today view now has an Apple Card widget that you can add to your Home screen. The Apple Card widget shows your current balance and your daily expenses in different categories.
iCloud Keychain Notes
iCloud Keychain users can now add notes to any password entry, making the iCloud Keychain more in line with other password storage options such as 1Password.
On iPhone and iPad, the iCloud keychain is available in the Settings app in the Passwords section.
Hiding password warnings in the iCloud keychain
Apple provides security advisories for weak or compromised passwords that are stored in the iCloud Keychain, but you won't be able to change those passwords in some situations.
If so, in iOS 15.4 you can dismiss these alerts by tapping the "x" button next to the alert. This action will hide the security advisory so that it does not appear in the main "Passwords" section of the Settings app.
If you need to view the warning again, you can find it under "Hidden Security Advice" in your password settings.
120Hz animation in third-party apps on iPhone 13 Pro
Since the release of the iPhone 13 Pro models, users have noticed that third-party apps are not displaying the full 120Hz ProMotion animation. Apple has stated that there is a Core Animation bug that will be fixed in a future update, and it looks like iOS 15.4 is that update.
In iOS 15.4, all animations in the app will be displayed at 120 Hz for a smoother, more comfortable use of the app.
Custom email domains
iOS 15.4 expands support for the custom email domain feature available for "iCloud+" paid plans by adding the ability to set up your own domain with "iCloud Mail" directly on your "iPhone."
If you go to Settings">"Apple ID">"iCloud", "iCloud Mail" is now clickable and includes a section for setting up a custom email domain.
Apps that support SharePlay now have the ability to activate it directly from the share sheet.
TV App Settings
Under "TV" in the Settings section of the app, you can now select the "Still Frame" or "Poster Art" options for the next display in the app. Still Frame shows still frames from what you're watching, and Poster Art shows basic headline images for shows or movies.
Passkey website login
Apple says the iOS 15.4 and iPadOS 15.4 updates add a new password feature that allows users to log in to keycard-compatible websites and apps on the Mac and "iPad" using an "iPhone" with a stored passkey.
This means that on websites that allow "Face ID" or "Touch ID" authentication, you can authenticate using the "iPhone" instead of entering a password.
By default, Emergency SOS now uses the call on hold feature to make an emergency call. To initiate an emergency call, press and hold the side button and the volume button until the countdown begins. The iPhone will then call emergency services.
The previous five-touch to initiate a call is also still available, but you must turn it on under "SOS Emergency Call" in the Settings app.
Vaccination information in the Health app
Verifiable medical records now support adding COVID digital EU certificate of vaccination records to the Health and Wallet apps, so EU residents can add their vaccination cards to the Wallet app for quick access.
The Apple News app provides improved detection of audio content in both the Today feed and the Audio tab.
When viewing shows in your library, you can filter episodes by played, unplayed, downloaded or saved. You can also go to any show and filter for a specific season.
Siri offline updates
Apple says Siri can provide time and date information offline on the iPhone XS, iPhone XR, iPhone 11 or newer.
Siri's new voice
iOS 15.4 adds a new Siri voice for U.S. users, which can be selected in the Settings app by selecting Siri and Search and then selecting Siri Voice.
Cosmetic scan in exchange for trade-in
Code in iOS 15.4 suggests that Apple is working on a "cosmetic scan" feature that will be used when trading in "iPhones." Cosmetic scanning will likely be used to check the iPhone for damage such as scratches and dents to provide a more accurate trade-in value.
According to Apple, the close-up in the magnifier can now use the ultra-wide-angle camera on the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max to better highlight small objects.
This update also includes several bug fixes, as described below.
- The keyboard can insert a dot between typed numbers
- News widgets in the Today view may not open articles when clicked
- Photos and videos may not sync to iCloud
- The Special Features screen aloud feature may end unexpectedly in the Books app.
- Live Listen may not turn off when turned off in Control Center
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