What does iPadOS

iOS 14.5 is here: all new features

Halyna Kubiv, Peter Müller, Kris Wallburg

A seldom long beta phase for point updates has ended: iOS 14.5 brings many major innovations.

Eight beta versions, over a period of two and a half months, are otherwise only available for main versions. From the WWDC to the final version of iOS 15 in September, we will see that again, otherwise interim budgets will get much faster from Apple's laboratories via the beta test to end-user devices, sometimes it's just a matter of a few weeks.

iOS 14.5 and the closely related systems iPadOS 14.5 and tvOS 14.5 bring a lot of essential innovations that justify the effort. These include important security updates, a recently introduced white balance feature for televisions, and Ad Tracking Transparency, which was announced almost a year ago. There are also some security updates and support for the new airtags. Here is an overview of all the new features:

More security for everyone

Apple wants to offer security updates or other stand-alone installers for iOS and iPadOS separately in the future, as is already the case with macOS. This has the advantage that Apple could also maintain older systems without immediately applying point updates. Only in rare cases did Apple update the previous version once or twice after the release of a new version of iOS, but most recently the need arose to upgrade iOS 12 to a new version so that the Corona warning app could also be used on iPhone 6 and 5S becomes usable. You can read more details about the separate security updates here.

New emojis

Apple continues to expand its emoji collection, new variations of the couple emojis have been added, which can now also have different skin colors, there are now around 200 variations. An emoji for a bearded woman is completely new, a certain singer from Austria will be happy about it. The syringe emoji now works without blood, which is perfect for depicting vaccinations. The headphone emoji is now reminiscent of the Airpods Max. Still sorely missed: Emojis for white wine, wheat beer and white sausages. We wanted to add borscht to this series, but that would destroy the beautiful alliteration. But we don't give up and every year we remind the responsible consortium of our wishes.

iPadOS 14.5 recognizes handwriting in German

Unlock despite mask

Israel was able to lift the mask requirement in public, until it is so far with us, several months will pass. In the meantime, however, you can unlock your Face ID iPhone despite the mask if you have paired it with an Apple Watch. This requires watchOS 7.4. More here:

From iOS 14.5: Unlock iPhone with Face ID despite the mask

Fixed color cast bug

Some users report that iOS 14.5 fixes the greenish or yellowish bug on some iPhones 12. The first reports came in November 2020, Apple has promised an improvement.

Set the white balance

While most of the new features had already become known through the public beta tests, a new one was only added a week ago. Apple had presented it together with the new Apple TV 4K on its show "Spring Loaded": With the help of the iPhone and Apple TV you can't really color calibrate your TV, but you can set the white balance so that the Apple TV outputs better colors. This also works with older set-top boxes, as long as they have tvOS 14.5 installed and an iPhone with a True Depth camera, i.e. Face ID, as we have known it since the iPhone X. Read here how it works in detail.

Siri shortcuts

There are a few new options for Siri shortcuts: On the one hand, the automation app can be used to take a screenshot, and this action can be integrated into your own shortcuts. There's a new shortcut that locks the screen orientation and one that toggles between 4G and 5G.

Bug fixes

In addition to the obvious innovations on the surface, Apple has fixed some bugs in the background. Carplay works as intended, even if the iPhone shares contacts via Carplay. iPad Pro 11 and iPad Pro 12.9 (from third generation) could not connect to an external monitor via the USB-C multiport adapter, this has now been fixed.

Data protection for iPads

As of iPadOS 14.5, tablets with a Smart Folio will hijack the connection to the built-in microphone as soon as the smart case is closed.

Start screen in landscape mode

Not for the iPhones, but for the iPads with iPadOS 14.5, the system will display an alternative graphic if the device is in landscape mode when it is started, for example on a keyboard. So far, the system has only recognized the landscape format when the iPad is docked to a Magic Keyboard. Without the keyboard attached, the iPad will start up in portrait format as usual, even if the user holds the device horizontally.

The emoji search also comes to the iPad keyboard a little late. The field for this appeared on the iPhones in the fall with iOS 14.

safari

For advertisers, Apple will bring a way to identify the original pages and apps, where the users come from. Apple promises in its developer notes to make this identification in a privacy-friendly way.

Software updates

The corresponding screen in the Settings app has been almost empty most of the time: If there was no update from Apple available, the user could only read the standard sentence "Your software is up to date". A green tick will now appear to indicate that this is actually the case. The standard sentence is expanded to include information about fixed security vulnerabilities, and the screen also shows when the user last checked for updates.

Apple Music

The developer sums up all suggestion algorithms from already existing automated playlists and brings "For you" into the media library area as a single playlist. In addition, Apple Music can show the release dates of the individual songs and albums a little more precisely, so far only the year is shown. From iOS 14.5, the month and day can also be seen.

Apple Music presents "city charts" for 100 cities worldwide, ie the most popular streams in New York, Rio, Tokyo and other cities. NFC tags, which Apple could install in its stores around the world, will bring information about Apple's subscription services such as Apple Music, Apple TV + or Apple Arcade directly to the iPhone's screen.

EnlargeYou can't hear the Spider Murphy gang in Munich anymore? Scandal!

Apple Music remains the standard app for music, as does the "Podcasts" app for podcasts. But Siri now remembers whether you prefer to listen to music or podcasts on another app. As soon as you say, for example, "Play Steve Lukather's new album on Spotify", Siri will automatically redirect you to Spotify the next time you ask about the next piece of music. This is equivalent to podcasts.

Siri

Apple is consistently taking the path of giving Siri less and less screen surface. Since the start in autumn, the answers of the personal assistant have appeared in the form of a notification and no longer cover the entire screen. Now Apple has also revised the fields for "Type Siri Requests". These appear in the form of several bars at the top and bottom of the screen, the center remains empty.

In the USA, Apple will in future give the choice of which voice Siri should speak when setting up the system, previously the female voice was preset. Some new voice options have now been added to the digital assistant, but they have no gender, but are only called voice 1 to 4. For the time being, this only applies to US English, in all other languages ​​there is a choice between "female" and "male".

"Where is?" for third parties

What used to be "Find my iPhone" and now "Where is?" is no longer just used to find a misplaced phone, the app also finds iPad, Mac and Airpos, and also names the position of family members, if they have allowed the location. Since last Friday you can now order the Airtags that you can put in your wallet, hang on your suitcase or bunch of keys or leave in your car. In the "Where is?" There is a new "Objects" tab for the Airtags and others. Apple opened its "Where is?" Network to everyone weeks ago: Those who meet Apple's criteria can integrate their hardware into the system so that they can be found again. This is interesting for bicycles, among other things, the e-bike manufacturer Van Moof is already there with some models, including Chipolo with its key fobs and Belkin with headphones.

EnlargeThe objects in the "Where is?" are already there, Apple has yet to deliver the Airtags. The first will arrive on Friday of this week.

Dual SIM and 5G

If you wanted to use the 5G standard connection with iPhone 12, you had to limit yourself to operation with a SIM card. A second installed SIM card set the connection back to 4G for both providers, now you can control the selection between the cellular standards more granularly. In the USA, 5G standalone is still supported from iOS 14.5. This is a type of mobile connection where the device uses the antenna that has already been upgraded to 5G. In Germany, 5G non-standalone, i.e. 5G NSA, is currently still operated. A 4G antenna is used even for 5G connections.

Data protection and privacy

Apple has been announcing for weeks that the next version of iOS will switch on the app tracking transparency, in iOS 14.5 trackers are switched off ex works and the user has to activate himself in order to be able to track him across apps and across the network. Read more about this here.

More training options and controllers

The new Fitness + service, which does not yet exist in Germany, now receives support for Airplay 2, so it can not only be used on iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch and Apple TV, but also on the Mac or Smart TV, if you can stream the workout instructions from your iPhone.

In addition, from iOS 14.5, Siri can also inform the emergency contacts by voice command, the update will also support the latest game controllers for Xbox and Playstation.

Battery health recalibrated

IPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max users will find that the battery health setting is recalibrated after the update, which could lead to incorrect displays on the models.

Apple's release notes are as follows:

Unlock iPhone with Apple Watch

• Ability to unlock iPhone X (and later) with Apple Watch Series 3 (and later) when trying to use Face ID while wearing a face mask

AirTag and app "Where is?"

• AirTag support for private and secure tracking and finding of important objects such as keys, wallet or backpack in the "Where is?" App

• The “exact search” function with visual, acoustic and haptic feedback to help locate an AirTag in the vicinity - using the ultra-broadband technology of the U1 chip in iPhone 11 and iPhone 12 models

• AirTags can be located by playing a sound through the integrated loudspeaker.

• Network for the “Where is?” App with millions of devices to support the search for an AirTag - even if it is not nearby

• In Lost Mode, you will be notified when your AirTag is found. You can enter a phone number where you can be reached.

Emoji

• Support of separate skin colors for individuals in all variations of the emoji "kissing couple" and "couple with a heart"

• New emoji faces, heart emojis and "woman with a beard" emoji

Siri

• If you have AirPods or compatible Beats headphones, Siri can announce incoming calls using the caller's name and answer them with your voice.

• FaceTime group calls are supported using a Siri command to call a contact list or a group name in the Messages app.

• Emergency contacts can be called using Siri.

privacy

• With the ATT framework (App Tracking Transparency) you can control which apps are allowed to track your activities in apps and on websites of other companies in order to offer you advertising or to pass your data on to data brokers.

Apple Music

• You can now share the lyrics of your favorite songs via the "Messages" app, Facebook and Instagram Stories. Subscribers can play the song snippet in the Messages app without leaving the current conversation.

• City charts show which titles are currently trending in more than 100 cities around the world.

Podcasts

• The pages for the programs in the “Podcasts” app have been redesigned and make listening easier.

• For quick access, episodes can be loaded and automatically added to your library and saved.

• Download behavior and settings for notifications can be adjusted separately for each podcast.

• Charts and popular categories in the search function make it easier to discover new programs.

5G optimizations

• “Dual SIM” support enables 5G connectivity on the line that uses the mobile data network on iPhone 12 models.

• Improvements to the “Smart Data” mode optimize the user experience in 5G networks through longer battery life and intelligent mobile data usage on iPhone 12 models.

• International 5G roaming with supported carriers on iPhone 12 models

cards

• With Siri or by tapping on the route map at the bottom of the screen and then tapping on “Share arrival time”, you can tell others your estimated time of arrival when you are traveling by car, bike or on foot.

memories

• Reminders can be sorted by title, priority, date or creation date.

• Option to print reminder lists

Translate

• The playback speed of the translations can be adjusted by long pressing the playback button.

Games

• Support for Xbox Series X | S wireless controllers or Sony PS5 DualSense ™ wireless controllers

CarPlay

• New Siri commands or buttons in CarPlay make it easy to share the estimated time of arrival in the “Maps” app while driving.

This version also fixes the following issues:

• Messages at the end of a conversation were hidden by the keyboard under certain conditions.

• Deleted messages were still showing up in Spotlight search in some cases.

• In some conversations, texts in the "Messages" app could not be sent permanently.

• For some users, the Mail app did not load new emails until the device was restarted.

• The sections for blocking and identifying calls were missing in the iPhone settings.

• iCloud tabs were not displayed in Safari in some cases.

• In some cases it was not possible to turn off the iCloud Keychain.

• Reminders created with Siri were mistakenly scheduled for the early hours of the morning.

• The battery health reporting system will recalibrate the maximum battery capacity and maximum power for iPhone 11 models to correct inaccurate estimates in some users' battery health reports (https://support.apple.com/HT212247).

• Optimizations to prevent the display of a faint glow that could occur with reduced brightness and a black background on iPhone 12 models

• The AutoSwitch feature was routing audio from the AirPods to the wrong device.

• The notifications for the "Auto switch" function were missing or duplicated on the AirPods.

For more information about the security aspects of Apple software updates, see https://support.apple.com/kb/HT201222