The first major update to theiOS 16 operating system since it was released in September will be released by Apple in a few weeks.
With iOS 16.1, Apple is bringing several new changes, features, and bug fixes to iPhone users. We've highlighted five noteworthy changes below. iOS 16.1 is currently still in beta testing with developers and public beta testers.
Live Activities are enabled on the Dynamic Island on the iPhone 14 Pro and on the redesign of the Lock Screen in the latest version of Apple's mobile operating system. Live Activities are notifications that show real-time information from apps without the need to open an app.
The estimated time of arrival of a car can be shown in a Live Activities notification on the lock screen. Live activities will allow sports apps to show game scores in real time.
On the latest iPhone 14 Pro models, Live Activities are also integrated into the Dynamic Island, which allows users to see real-time information from apps as they use their phone. Live Activities are also shown on the Lock Screen in always-on display mode. Once iOS 16.1 is released to the public, apps will begin to adopt support for Live Activities.
Over the summer, Apple added a battery percentage indicator to the status bar for iPhones with a notch. The initial version of the battery indicator included a battery icon that remained visually full, regardless of the iPhone's actual charge. In iOS 16.1, Apple is changing the behavior of the battery icon to accurately reflect the iPhone's charge level when the percentage is shown. iOS 16.1 also expands the battery indicator to more devices, including the iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 13 mini.
Starting with iOS 16.1, iPhone users will be able to subscribe and use Apple Fitness+ without needing an Apple Watch. Fitness+ is a subscription from Apple that provides a wide catalog of workout videos and programs with different trainers. At launch, an Apple Watch was needed to use Fitness+ to display real-time metrics on the screen.
When lower carbon emission electricity is available, Apple has added a new Clean Energy Charging option that will charge the phone when the electricity is less harmful to the environment. The feature can be turned off if desired, as Apple says the phone will still reach a full charge before it's needed.
iOS 16.1 adds a new toggle for apps downloaded from the App Store that can automatically run newly downloaded apps in the background to download content before you first launch them. The new toggle is meant to make it faster for users to begin using an app immediately after downloading without waiting for the in-app content to load.
iOS 16.1 is the first major update to iOS 16, so as expected, several smaller but noteworthy changes and bug fixes are included in the update.