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Here’s What Can Be Expected From The Upcoming iOS 18 Update

Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) started on June 10, and since then, more and more features regarding the upcoming iOS 18 update have surfaced.

Now, with the iOS 18 beta released, information surrounding these features has come out, giving Apple users waiting for the update a look inside what they can expect.

First up, Apple announced it will introduce Messaging via Satellite as a key feature of this update. It will allow “off-the-grid” communication even without great reception.

It follows the Emergency SOS tool, which uses satellites to connect iPhone owners with emergency services. This was launched with the iPhone 14, back in 2022.

The company will also bring hiking routes to Apple Maps with this update. There will 63 US hiking routes introduced for national parks, which can be sorted by length, elevation, and route type.

These can also be saved for offline use. It’s currently unclear how many Australian routes will be added.

Users will also get the chance to create custom walking routes, which can be saved to the new ‘Places’ library in Maps. Personal notes can also be added here.

Finally, Apple is also bringing the topographic maps from watchOS 10 to iOS 18.

A Reddit user, who experimented with the first beta of this update, has spotted that the iPhone’s clock remained in the status bar, even when the phone’s battery was dead.

The current versions of iOS keep the iPhone discoverable using Find My technology, and now it appears Apple has made it so the iPhone can continue telling the time.

This Reddit user also claims the clock remains visible when the phone is charging but not switched on.

Some have noted it won’t be available on all models, including the 2020 iPhone SE.

This means it will only support phones that include Find My support when off, such as the iPhone 11, iPhone 12, iPhone 13, iPhone 14, and iPhone 15 ranges.

The Apple AirPods Pro 2 are also getting a significant update, with the company announcing iOS 18 will allow users of these earbuds to answer calls hands and voice-free.

There will also be new voice isolation tools that make sure the other person can hear the user loud and clear.

Personalised Spatial Audio will also improve the gaming experience. Additionally, when there’s an incoming announcement from Siri via these earbuds, the user can gently nod yes or shake their head no to tell Siri whether to respond.

Apple has yet to explain how it will work but says it’ll only work with the second-generation AirPods Pro.

Apple will also be rolling out better wireless audio latency for gaming via the new Game Mode for iPhone for the AirPods Pro, giving users better voice quality (16bit, 48kHz).

Additionally, users will also soon be able to lock and hide apps on the home screen. This feature is expected to help keep banking apps private and prevent kids from accessing certain apps.

The feature will allow users to obscure the app’s icon and name on the home screen and pause notifications.

Creating a “Hidden App” folder will display as such on the home screen, and users can also lock apps already programmed into phones, which can be set only to be opened with a Face ID.

Apple has also revealed that users will be able to customise home screens, where they we be able to rearrange icons and change the colour of app icons.

This update is also expected to come with Apple Intelligence, a new AI-powered system that responds to prompts, creates new text and images, and solves problems.

It will feature a Rewrite tool, which can be used to reword tricky messages, and can be adjusted to sound friendly, professional, or concise.

Finally, Apple has revealed which phones will be gaining the update.

  • iPhone 15, Pro, Pro Max, Plus
  • iPhone 14, Pro, Pro Max, Plus
  • iPhone 13, Pro, Pro Max, Mini
  • iPhone 12, Pro, Pro Max, Mini
  • iPhone 11, Pro, Pro Max
  • iPhone XS, XS Max
  • iPhone XR
  • iPhone SE (2nd & 3rd Generation)

Also expected to get the iOS 18 update is the iPhone 16 series (iPhone 16, 16 Plus, 16 Pro, 16 Pro Max).

The 2018 iPhone XR, iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max will be supported until at least September 2025.

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