If you thought iOS 14.3 would be the next Apple iPhone update, well, you were sort of right. If you have an iPhone 11 or earlier, you won’t be troubled by today’s update. It’s only for the latest models of iPhones, that is, iPhone 12, iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max.
Here’s how to go about downloading it, exactly what’s in it and what was in previous updates, followed by the complete Apple changelog.
How to get it
It’s just become available to download on compatible iPhones, which in this case is just the four phones that make up the iPhone 12 range: iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 mini, plus the two Pro versions, iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max.
To get it on one of these phones, just go to the Settings app, select General, then Software Update. Choose Download and Install, it’ll crack on and sort you out in no time at all.
What’s in the update?
This update is just two weeks after the last one, iOS 14.2, so it came as a bit of a surprise. The main event is a fix for Messsages. Many users had reported that messages had gone missing from group text message threads. That’s put right in this update, Apple says.
Similarly, issues of sound quality for Made for iPhone hearing devices when playing back audio from the iPhone, a serious problem, for sure, has been addressed.
The third issue was a lock screen that could become unresponsive was sorted in this update. Intriguingly, this problem wasn’t limited just to iPhone 12 models but was even more specific: it’s for iPhone 12 mini only.
Previous iOS 14 updates
Released on November 5, 2020, this update brought over 100 brilliant new emoji, new wallpapers with light and dark mode versions, support for the upcoming iPhone 12 leather sleeve, and an improvement to HomePod and the upcoming HomePod mini’s new Intercom feature.
The original HomePod gained connectivity to the Apple TV 4K for stereo surround sound and Dolby Atmos audio.
The Magnifier app gained People Detection, using the LiDAR sensor included in iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max to reveal how far away people are. This is a real benefit for people with limited vision and is especially useful at a time when social distancing is important.
And now, AirPods battery charging is optimized for the first time, and there was a timely option to give statistics about Exposure Notifications, without identification, to Public Health Authorities. Plus, lots of bug-squishing.
This was released on October 20, 2020 and, like the next iOS update this one included stuff for the HomePod.
Other benefits are focused on fixes and bug squishes. For instance, it means there’s now support for 10-bit HDR video playback, applying to Photos for iPhone 8 and later. Issues with reduced-size icons, folders and widgets were addressed, along with other Home screen problems such as apps disappearing from folders when widgets were dragged was fixed. Mail issues, such as messages sent from an incorrect alias have been sorted. Incoming calls regional info that wasn’t working is now all fixed. Other issues included a screen redraw problem with an emergency call overlap, songs that wouldn’t download and a Calculator app issue were sorted
There were a couple of Apple Watch problems such as the iPhone not identifying the case material on your timepiece have been addressed.
Released on September 24, this update fixed an issue where the default browser and mail settings reset after restarting your iPhone, sorted an issue that prevented camera previews from displaying on, specifically, iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus and a problem where the iPhone wouldn’t connect to wi-fi.
A problem sending emails with certain providers and images not appearing in the News widget, were also addressed.
The first version of iOS 14 was released on September 16, 2020.
The Home Screen added Widgets – smart app icons with changing information – on the home screen, revealed an App Gallery to help sort where your apps sit and added Compact Designs. These mean that Siri just sits at the bottom of the screen instead of taking it over completely while calls coming in will be announced just at the top of the screen.
App Clips are something completely new. If you need something an app delivers but really don’t have time to download the whole app, register, set up an account, verify your credentials and so on, then App Clips can help. They’ll work well with something like a parking app, say, when you’re next to the meter and short on time. Instead, you’ll scan the QR code, or tap the NFC tag, on the meter. App Clips downloads just the bit of the app you need and since you log in through Apple, all those things like payment details are sorted, too. This could be amazing as more apps come on stream.
The Messages app is now more capable, so you can now pin conversations you want to find easily at the top of the list, new Memoji options and better layouts for replies.
Maps has been improved, as on the Apple Watch, by the addition of cycle routes, routing for electric vehicles, edited guides to find new restaurants and more.
Translate is designed to make it easy to translate conversations in real time across 11 modes. You can even do this offline, which should save data costs when you’re traveling.
The Weather app can show you how much it’s going to rain in the next hour as well as advising on severe weather events.
New Accessibility features include Back Tap which lets you configure shortcuts when you tap on the back of the iPhone in a particular way.
AirPods Pro get in on the action, too, thanks to extra features which appear on the earbuds when your iPhone has moved to iOS 14. These include Spatial Audio so you can have a surround-sound effect as you watch a movie, say, and seamless device switching. More details here.
Apple full changelog follows.
iOS 14.2.1 addresses the following issues for your iPhone:
- Some MMS messages may not be received
- Made for iPhone hearing devices could have sound quality issues when listening to audio from iPhone
- Lock Screen could become unresponsive on iPhone 12 mini
For information on the security content of Apple software updates, please visit this website: support.apple.com/kb/HT201222
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