Apple officially released iOS 13.5 on Wednesday (20th May) with a couple of major new features including a streamlining Face ID system for mask wearers and a raft of bug fixes and other improvements.
Insiders revealed earlier this month that Apple was working to improve Face ID for people wearing masks amid the outbreak of the coronavirus.
Before the latest update, Face ID would fail when a user was wearing a mask and they would then have to struggle to get to the passcode screen to unlock an iPhone.
This laborious method is not best suited to the ‘new normal’ where users are wearing masks and face shields to commute to work and buy groceries in shops.
Apple said in a statement that the latest changes will speed up access to the passcode field.
Face ID will now recognise that a user is wearing a mask and quickly move to the passcode input automatically when a user swipes up from the bottom of the screen.
Apple says that this will work when authenticating payments using Apple Pay and for purchases made on the App Store.
Basically, any app that requires Face ID will support the new system moving forward.
The new update also brings the Exposure Notification API to iPhone.
This will enable public health authorities around the world to implement contact-tracing apps to limit the spread of the coronavirus.
iOS 13.5 also includes a couple of other features that are not directly related to COVID-19.
Apple Music now has a new feature that allows users to share songs from the service directly to Instagram Stories.
FaceTime has also been updated with new controls for ‘automatic prominence’ in group chats.
Apple also rolled out iPadOS 13.5 on Wednesday with many of the same new features including Face ID and passcode improvements and several other iPad-specific bug fixes.
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