What you need to know about iOS 14.5

Published on 23 Apr 2021

Apple has announced that the new iOS 14.5 update will be released in the week starting 26th April. The update will come with a host of exciting features. We've highlighted some of the most important ones below.

Updated features with iOS 14.5

1. Unlock with Apple watch

The pandemic has changed the way we do a lot of things. It will also change how some users choose to unlock their phones. Over the past year, many iPhone users have reported facing difficulties unlocking their iPhones while wearing a mask. The new 14.5 update will allow users to use their Apple Watch to unlock their iPhones in such a situation. The iPhone will check to see if the person using the phone is wearing a mask, once the phone registers the presence of a mask it will allow users to unlock the phone using their Apple watch. The conditions mentioned below will need to be met for this feature to work:

  1. Face ID detects a mask
  2. Your Apple Watch is nearby
  3. Your Apple Watch is on your wrist
  4. Your Apple Watch is unlocked
  5. Your Apple Watch has a passcode enabled

2. Select your own default music player

Until now Apple Music was the default music player for the iPhone. Things are about to change with the 14.5 update. When you ask Siri to play music she will check your phone for available music players and list them out. You can choose which player you want to set as your default. Spotify is a popular choice for music streaming and if you are a Spotify fan you can set it as your default. Though Apple Music can more than hold its own, so maybe you will choose to keep things as they are. It's interesting to note that Google is currently facing an antitrust lawsuit in the United States for anti-competitive practices, which include setting Google search as the default for Android devices.

3. New voices for Siri

The voice of Siri is iconic. However, in recent years virtual assistants like Siri, Alexa, and Google Assistant have come under criticism for choosing white female voices. Critics say the use of female voices for assistants was reinforcing negative gender role biases. They also note that the voices chosen for 'serious business' like law or finance tended to be male. The fact that Siri's voice sounds like that of a white affluent woman has also been criticized. It seems Apple has been paying attention to what is being said. Apple has had a male voice option for Siri for a white, but it will not introduce two more voices for users to choose from. Siri will no longer default to the female voice we are used to associating the AI with and instead will ask users to choose their preference. In settings, the voices have not been labeled as Male 1 and 2 or Female 1 and 2 but instead are simply called Voice 1, 2, 3, and 4. Watch this video by Appleinsider to hear Siri's new voices. You can skip ahead to the 2-minute mark or watch the full video.

4. Privacy prompts

Perhaps the most controversial feature to accompany the new update is app tracking transparency. After the new update is released, apps will need to ask users for permission to track data and activity. Many people were surprised to find out exactly how much of their behavior was being tracked by apps without their knowledge. The new feature has many digital advertising companies like Facebook and Google worried. These companies rely on user behavior data to serve targeted ads. Facebook even considered suing apple over the new feature. Regardless, you will now have greater transparency from apps that want to track your data and will be able to opt-out.

5. Other features

Other features that will accompany the update are improved support for PS5, X Box X controllers, addition of 200 new emojis, and the ability for Siri to call emergency services. Subscribe to whitepapers.online and stay updated with the latest news from the world of tech.

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Featured image: Apple