APPLE has issued a security alert to all iPhone users: update your handset as soon as possible.
The tech giant is urgent iPhone owners to “keep your software up to date” as a brand new iOS release arrives.
Yesterday Apple began rolling out the latest iOS 16.1 update, which is packed with new features.
But Apple says that the new software update also fixes a number of flaws that would allow hackers to take control of your iPhone.
“An app may be able to execute arbitrary code with kernel privileges,” Apple warned.
Apple added: “Keeping your software up to date is one of the most important things you can do to maintain your Apple product’s security.”
To get iOS 6.1 on your iPhone, go to Settings > General > Software Update.
Thankfully, iOS 16.1 is much more than just a security update.
“This update introduces iCloud Shared Photo Library, making it easy to keep your family photos up to date,” said Apple.
“This release also adds support for third-party apps in Live Activities, support for Apple Fitness+ on iPhone even if you don’t have an Apple Watch, and other features and bug fixes for your iPhone.”
You can download the update for free, and it’ll get you these four features…
Back in September, Apple rolled out iOS 16 – giving users the ability to massively customise their iPhone Lock Screens.
This included the ability to add widgets to the Lock Screen for the first time.
And in the upcoming iOS 16.1 upgrade, Apple is adding a brand new type of widget.
They’re called Live Activities and they offer up real-time info on ongoing events.
The big advantage of this is that live sports scores can be display directly on your Home Screen.
Live Activities aren’t just limited to sporting fixtures, of course.
“Live Activities is a new feature that helps users stay on top of things that are happening in real time, such as a sports game, workout, ride-share, or food delivery order, right from the Lock Screen,” Apple explained.
That means you’ll also be able to track how far your food delivery is from your address, or how you’re getting on during exercise.
These Live Activity widgets will be temporary and live at the bottom of your iPhone Lock Screen – as opposed to the current widgets that persist at the top of the display.
Apple Fitness+ is finally coming to iPhone without the need for an Apple Watch.
The service provides personalised workouts beamed to your eyes and ears through your iPhone, iPad, or Apple TV – but previously required Apple Watch ownership.
It costs £9.99 / $9.99 a month or £79.99 / $79.99 for a year’s subscription.
And in iOS 16.1, it’s available to use on iPhone even you don’t have an Apple-branded smartwatch.
New battery icon
Apple is also tweaking the iPhone’s new battery symbol with a slightly slicker design.
It follows Apple fan complaints over the fact that the battery icon didn’t deplete as it drained.
The new icon – introduced last month with iOS 16 – finally added a number to represent battery percentage.
This was a long-requested feature, but some iPhone users weren’t entirely happy.
Currently the battery icon appears full right down until below 20% – no matter what the number percentage says.
Now a new version of the battery symbol depletes as it’s drained.
Clean Energy Charging
Apple is also adding a new Clean Energy Charging option for the eco-friendly.
“In your region, iPhone will try to reduce your carbon footprint by selectively charging when lower carbon emission electricity is available,” Apple explained.
“iPhone learns from your daily charging routine so it can reach full charge before you need to use it.”
The feature is optional, so you don’t have to use it if you don’t want to.
The bad news is that not all users can get iOS 16.1.
If you can upgrade to iOS 16 then you’re fine, but anyway with a very old iPhone model will miss out.
Here’s a list of all the iOS 16 (and iOS 16.1) supported devices:
- iPhone 14
- iPhone 14 Plus
- iPhone 14 Pro
- iPhone 14 Pro Max
- iPhone 13
- iPhone 13 mini
- iPhone 13 Pro
- iPhone 13 Pro Max
- iPhone 12
- iPhone 12 mini
- iPhone 12 Pro
- iPhone 12 Pro Max
- iPhone 11
- iPhone 11 Pro
- iPhone 11 Pro Max
- iPhone Xs
- iPhone XS Max
- iPhone XR
- iPhone X
- iPhone 8
- iPhone 8 Plus
- iPhone SE (2nd generation or later)
Not being able to get the latest iOS means you’ll lose access to the most up-to-date security fixes.
These are vital patches that close holes used by hackers to access your systems.
So using a very old iPhone that can’t be updated could put you at risk.
If you can’t update to iOS 16, consider upgrading your iPhone sooner rather than later.
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