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iOS 15.4, macOS 12.3, watchOS 8.5 now available for download: What’s new?

Apple‘s latest update is now available for download, and it includes new features across all its platforms. iOS 15.4, which is preinstalled in the green iPhone 13, iPhone 13 Pro, and iPhone SE (2022), is released along with tvOS 15.4, macOS 12.3, and watchOS 8.5, making its one of the more significant updates since January. What’s new from the update?

Using FaceID while wearing a mask

For those who are using iPhone 12 or newer, FaceID can now be used even if you have a mask on. It also follows that Apple Pay, log-in, and autofill features can also be accessed via FaceID while wearing the mask. Although it might be less reliable when you are also wearing glasses on top of the mask, iOS 15.4 puts a premium in recognizing the upper half of the face when you have your masked appearance scanned.

New Siri voice

Since last year, Apple’s digital assistant Siri no longer has the female voice iOS users may have been accustomed to as its default. This has been carried over in iOS 15.4. A fifth American voice was also added called Quinn. It is a more “gender neutral” voice that Apple confirmed to be recorded by a member of the LGBT+ community. In addition, Siri can now provide time and date information while offline for iPhone 11 or newer.

Vaccine card support

EU Digital COVID Certificate support in the Health and Wallet apps allows you to download and store verifiable versions of Covid-19 vaccination, lab results, and recovery records.

Universal control

This is more of an iPadOS feature that goes along with the macOS update. Unveiled in a beta released last January, it allows the use of keyboard and mouse across iPad and Mac, which is more unified than just having a second monitor. You can also drag and drop files between devices. On another note, Python 2 has been removed from macOS.

Supported devices include MacBook and MacBook Pro released in 2016 or later, iMac released in 2017 or later, and MacBook Air introduced in 2018 or later. The iPad needs to have iPadOS 15.4 for this function to work.

Apple Watch restore

With iOS 15.4 and watchOS 8.5, Apple has introduced support to restore Apple Watch firmware through your iPhone. On this note, Apple advises to try using a 2.4GHz network instead of 5GHz, and to avoid 802.1X or captive Wi-Fi networks when using this feature.

To have Apple’s latest update, go to the Settings app, and then to General. In Software Updates, iOS 15.4 is available.

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Avatar for Arius Lauren Raposas

A public servant with a heart for actively supporting technology and futures thinking, responding accordingly to humanity's needs and goals, increasing participation of people in issues concerning them, upholding rights and freedoms, and striving further to achieve more despite our limited capacities. In everything, to God be all the glory.

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