Today Apple released significant updates across all of their operating systems. These are pretty big refinement updates, so I recommend everyone update as soon as you can, especially if you have already upgraded to this generation of software. The corresponding updates for Apple TV and HomePod are expected to be released on Wednesday, likely at 10am Pacific/1pm Eastern.
There are a handful of small new features, but nothing earth-shattering for most people. Most new features are related to HomePod and HomeKit. In addition to general security, performance, and bug fixes, here are some of the new features:
- New Unity wallpaper for Black History Month.
- Ability to use a hardware security key to further secure your Apple ID.
- Ambient sounds on HomePod can now be utilized by Scenes and Shortcuts.
- HomePod ambient sounds are redesigned to add more depth.
- Temperature and Humidity sensor enabled on HomePod Mini.
- Advanced Data Protection is now available worldwide.
- HomePod volume adjustments are more granular at low volume levels.
- Changes to reduce accidental emergency SOS calls.
- Can now ask HomePod for the location of friends and family who have shared location with you.
- You can now create recurring Home automations by voice (“Hey Siri, turn on my bedroom lights every morning at 7am”).
- Better clarity for voice playback on non-Mini HomePod models.
- Minor improvements to Siri’s listening ability, particularly while using CarPlay.
- Mac (macOS 13 Ventura or later): Click the Apple menu > System Settings > General > Software Update.
- Mac (macOS 12 Monterey or earlier): Click the Apple menu > System Preferences > Software Update. Apple Support Article HT201541
- iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch: Open the Settings app > General > Software Update. Apple Support Article HT204204
- Apple Watch: First update your iPhone, then on your iPhone tap the Watch app > General > Software Update. Apple Support Article HT204641
- Apple TV: Go to the Settings app > System > Software Update. Apple Support Article HT202716
- HomePod: Updates will install automatically. To push the update along faster see the instructions in Apple Support Article HT208247
If you are an existing customer who needs help with this or if you have other questions, or if you are in San Francisco and interested in becoming a client I invite you to book an appointment with me. Otherwise, you may wish to contact Apple Support or find a local Apple consultant.
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