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Apple Seeds Second Betas of iOS 18 and iPadOS 18 to Developers

Apple today seeded the second betas of upcoming iOS 18 and iPadOS 18 updates to developers for testing purposes, with the software coming two weeks after the release of the first betas after the WWDC 2024 keynote event.

Registered developers are able to opt into the betas by opening up the Settings app, going to the Software Update section, tapping on the “Beta Updates” option, and toggling on the ‌‌iOS 18‌/‌iPadOS 18‌‌ Developer Beta setting. Note that an Apple ID associated with a developer account is required to download and install the beta.

‌iOS 18‌ introduces Apple Intelligence, a set of AI features that are built deeply into the operating system. Apple Intelligence won’t be coming until later in the beta testing process, but it includes features for refining and editing writing, generating images and emoji, and most notably, improving Siri and search. ‌Siri‌ is gaining a better understanding of natural language, improved contextual awareness, and the personal assistant will integrate with ChatGPT to answer more complex queries.

Apple Intelligence features are limited to the iPhone 15 Pro models and iPads with an M-series chip, but there are a number of other features that are coming. Apple is allowing users to rearrange Home screen apps to have open spaces, plus there’s a dark mode for app icons and tinting options.

The Control Center is customizable and third-party developers can add controls for their apps, with the Lock Screen Flashlight and Camera icons able to be replaced or removed. Messages is gaining Rich Communication Services support to improve conversations with Android users, the option to schedule texts to be sent later, new text effects, messages over satellite when there’s no cellular, and the option to use any emoji for Tapback responses.

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There’s a dedicated Passwords app for logins, passkeys, Wi-Fi passwords, and verification codes, and there’s now an option to lock and hide apps, which means they can’t be opened without secondary Face ID or Touch ID authentication even when your phone is unlocked.

Safari has a highlights feature that summarizes articles and surfaces key information on websites, the Photos app interface has been overhauled, and there’s a new Tap to Cash feature for privately and securely transferring money using Apple Cash. Other features include equation solving and voice memo transcription in Notes, a game mode for improving game performance, and an option to respond to ‌Siri‌ on AirPods with head gestures.

‌iOS 18‌ is only available to registered developers at the current time, but Apple plans to make a public beta available in July. ‌iOS 18‌ and ‌iPadOS 18‌ will see a public launch this fall.

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