34 Apple TV Tips & Tricks
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34 Apple TV Tips & Tricks

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This awesome list of 34 Apple TV tips and tricks will help users learn to do more with the tvOS streaming set-top box without having to spend a lot of time dabbling through settings trying to figure things out.

While we’ve discussed some nifty Apple TV features in the past, we thought it might be a good idea to compile a good list of some solid tips and tricks that you may not know about for the new fourth-generation Apple TV.

Like many Apple products, the Apple TV is a simple device, but it contains a lot of potential that many users have yet to unleash.

You can do things like mirror your Mac’s screen or your iPad’s screen to your television, customize the Apple TV home screen to your liking, play games through the Apple TV, and even use your iPhone or iPad as an Apple TV remote.

Without further ado, here are 34 Apple TV tips and tricks that you can use to make your living room entertainment experience way better.

Use Your iPhone or iPad to Set Up Your Apple TV

Just like the third-generation Apple TV, you can set up your new Apple TV the easy way without having to navigate through on-screen menus manually by using your iPhone to set it all up.

All you need to do is make sure that your iPhone or iPad is running at least iOS 9.1 and connected to your preferred WiFi network and that Bluetooth is on. Then, simply just set your iPhone or iPad on top of the Apple TV and it will detect the automatic setup. We have a more thorough guide that you can go over.

Rearrange Home Screen Apps

If you’re not quite happy with how your home screen apps are laid out, you can actually rearrange them to better suit your needs.

Simply just highlight the app that you want to move and then press and hold down on the trackpad on the Apple TV remote. The app icons will begin to jiggle, and from there all you need to do is use is swipe across the trackpad to move the app to the desired location on the home screen.

Mirror Your Mac’s Display to Your TV

Apple has a feature called AirPlay that allows you to stream content from a Mac or iOS device to your Apple TV to play on your television. You can also use it to mirror your Mac’s display to your television.

Simply click on the AirPlay icon in your Mac’s menu bar and then select your Apple TV from the list. From there, your Mac’s display will show up on your television and you can use that to show off photos to friends and family and what not.

Mirror Your iPhone or iPad’s Screen to Your TV

Similar to how you can mirror your Mac’s display to your television, you can do the same thing with your iPhone or iPad.

Simply bring up Control Center on your iPhone or iPad and tap on AirPlay. From the list that pops up, click on your Apple TV and then enable Mirroring. Your iPhone or iPad’s screen will now appear on your television.

Play Games on Your Apple TV

One big feature of the new Apple TV is the ability to play games right on the set-top box, and many of the popular games that you’ve played on your iPhone in the past can now be played on your television.

Galaxy-on-Fire-3-Manticore-Rising-Screen

The best part is that you don’t need to AirPlay the games to your TV. The games are stored locally on the Apple TV and you simply use the remote as a controller, or you can buy a third-party gamepad.

Download Third-Party Apps

On previous Apple TV models, you only had the apps that were available, and many of them you probably didn’t use. However, the new Apple TV allows you to download third-party apps, providing much more content to watch on the device.

There are a ton of Apple TV apps available, and we made a huge list of some that you should check out.

Use Your iPhone or iPad as a Remote

The remote that comes with your Apple TV is pretty cool, especially with it having a trackpad and a Siri button, but it can easily become lost. If you can’t find your Apple TV remote, you can actually use your iPhone or iPad as a remote.

iphone-remote

By downloading and installing the Remote app, you can turn your iOS device into an Apple TV remote and control the streaming box using your iPhone or iPad.

Use a Universal Remote with Your Apple TV

If you’re not a big fan of the Apple TV remote or would just rather use the universal remote that you already have, you can program it to work with your Apple TV.

Using the Apple remote, navigate to Settings > Remotes and Devices and choose Learn Remote. Select a setting on your universal remote that doesn’t control any of your current devices and then hit Start.

Rename Your Apple TV

If you have more than one Apple TV in your house, it may be a good idea to rename them so that you know which one is which.

To do this, navigate to Settings > AirPlay > Apple TV Name and choose from the list depending on where that particular Apple TV box is located, such as Living Room, Bedroom, etc.

Put Your Apple TV to Sleep Immediately

There’s a way that you can shut off your Apple TV, or rather, put it to sleep. However, it involves a few steps and navigation menus to go through before you can actually turn it off.

However, there’s a quick way you can immediately put your Apple TV to sleep, and all you have to do is press and hold down on the Home button on your Apple TV remote and then select Sleep.

Get Back to the Home Screen Quicker

If you’re sick of pressing the Menu button down five times to finally get back to the home screen, there’s a quicker way of doing so.

New-Apple-TV-Setup-Guide-10

On the older Apple TV, you would hold down the Menu button to get back to the home screen, but on the new remote you can simply click the Home button to get back to the main screen.

Set Up Parental Controls

If you have kids and don’t want them to watch just anything on the Apple TV in your living room, you can set up restrictions so that they can only watch content that you approve.

Navigate to Settings > General > Restrictions. This is where you can set up all sorts of restrictions for movies and TV shows, like restricting content based on rating, and preventing your kids from purchasing or renting any movies or TV shows without your permission.

Access Your Photos on Your Apple TV

Any photos that you’ve taken on your iPhone or iPad can be immediately available to view on your Apple TV by enabling My Photo Stream on both your iOS device and your Apple TV.

First, to enable it on your Apple TV, simply open the Photos app and click on Turn on iCloud Photos.

Next, to turn on My Photo Stream on your iOS device, navigate to Settings > iCloud > Photos and turn on My Photo Stream. Now whenever you take a photo, it will show up on your Apple TV in the Photos app.

Use Your Photos as a Screensaver Slideshow

Your Apple TV can use Apple’s own Aerial wallpapers, which are really cool and fun to watch. However, if you want to use your own photos, you can make that happen as well.

apple-tv-screensavers

Since you already enabled iCloud Photos in the previous tip, all you need to do is navigate to Settings > Screensaver > Type and select My Photos. From there, you can select to use your own photos as your Apple TV’s screen saver.

Watch Trailers to All the Latest Movies

You could technically go to YouTube and search for a movie trailer you want to watch, but it’s not the best option when it comes to watching from a collection of trailers.

If you’re simply just interested in watching some random movie trailers of the latest movies, the Trailers app is a good app to use if you’re wanting to find a movie that you might want to go see in theaters. While it used to be a default app on older Apple TV models, you’ll have to download it from the App Store on the new Apple TV.

Purchase and Rent Movies & TV Shows

While this technically isn’t a hidden tip or trick of any kind, many new Apple TV users might not be aware that you can purchase or rent movies and TV shows right on the Apple TV and begin watching it immediately.

The Movies and TV Shows app toward the top of the home screen allow you to browse the iTunes catalog of video content that you can either buy or rent. After you make a purchase, you can start watching it right away on your Apple TV. It’s perhaps the easiest way to buy or rent movies and TV shows.

Quickly Pair a Remote with Your Apple TV

Do you have more than one Apple TV in your house, but can only seem to find one Apple TV remote? You can use it to control any Apple TV box.

New-Apple-TV-Review-8

Since the new Apple TV remote uses Bluetooth, you’ll need to pair a new remote to the box, which can be done by simply holding the Menu button and the Volume Up button at the same time.

Bring Up the App Switcher

Just like on the iPhone and iPad, the new Apple TV now has an app switcher.

To activate it, simply double-click the Home button. From there, you can swipe through all the apps that are open. If a particular app is frozen or acting up, you can highlight it and then swipe up to force-close it.

Manually Start the Screensaver

In the settings you can set how long it takes for the screensaver to activate, but if you want to manually start it at any time, there’s a quick shortcut to make that happen.

Double-clicking the Menu button while you’re at the home screen will force the screensaver to start if you don’t want to wait for it to automatically appear.

Quickly Restart Your Apple TV

If your Apple TV is acting up in general, it might be a good idea to restart it and give it a fresh start.

New-Apple-TV-Setup-Guide-2

You can restart your Apple TV from the settings, but the easiest way is to press and hold the Menu and Home buttons at the same time.

Quickly Change to Uppercase/Lowercase

The on-screen keyboard on the Apple TV is rather lacking — it’s just not that great, but here’s a neat trick that can make it easier to use.

Simply clicking the Play/Pause button will change the keyboard from lowercase to uppercase, and vice versa. You can also hover over any letter and hold down the trackpad to bring up a menu, which includes the uppercase or lowercase version of that letter.

Delete an App from the Home Screen

Did you download an app or game, but no longer use it? There’s a way to quickly delete them from your Apple TV right from the home screen.

Simply hover over the app you want to delete and then hold down the trackpad until all of the apps start to jiggle. From there, click the Play/Pause button to delete the highlighted app or game.

Skip Ahead 10 Seconds in Any Video

On the Apple TV remote, you can swipe to scrub through a video, but if you only want to fast forward a few seconds, you can click on the right side of the trackpad to skip ahead 10 seconds. The same can be done on the left side of the trackpad to rewind 10 seconds.

New-Apple-TV-Setup-Guide-3

Make the Trackpad More Touch Sensitive

If you feel like the trackpad isn’t as sensitive as you’d like, you can raiser or lower the sensitivity in the settings.

Go into Settings > Remotes and Devices and select Touch Surface Tracking to change the sensitivity of the remote’s trackpad.

Quickly Jump Back to the Music App

The Music app on the Apple TV is the only app that can play content while on currently being open, so when you play a song and exit out of the app, that song will continue to play.

However, there’s a quick trick to use that can get you back to the Music app instantly. Simply hold down the Play/Pause button for a few seconds until it takes you directly to the Music app.

Check the Remote’s Battery Level

Your Apple TV remote uses an internal battery and it can last for months on one charge, but you can view how much battery life it has left.

Apple-TV-Black-Friday-2015-Deals

To check the battery level, navigate to Settings > Remotes and Devices > Bluetooth.

Allow the Remote to Adjust Your TV’s Volume

A really cool feature of the Apple TV remote is that it can control the volume of your TV or audio receiver.

Go into Settings > Remotes and Devices and select Volume Control. From here, the Apple TV can learn the volume buttons on your regular remote and replicate it with the volume buttons on the Apple TV remote.

Connect Bluetooth Headphones

If you want to watch a movie on your Apple TV but don’t want to bug anyone else in the house, you can connect a Bluetooth pair of headphones to your Apple TV for quiet listening.

Go to Settings > Remotes and Devices > Bluetooth and your Apple TV will begin to look for devices in range. Make sure your headphones are in pairing mode and you can then connect them to your Apple TV.

Add Another Apple ID

You may have not known this, but you can add another Apple ID to your Apple TV and have multiple Apple IDs associated with your Apple TV box.

Go to Settings > Accounts > iTunes and App Store > Add New Apple ID. After you add a second account, you can switch between them by going into Settings > Accounts > iTunes and App Store and then selecting the account you want to use at that time.

Equalize Movie Volume

If you’re watching a movie that includes both loud explosions and quiet dialogue, you might benefit from a unique Apple TV feature.

New Apple TV Review - 4

Go to Settings > Audio and Video and select Reduce Loud Sounds. You can also tell Siri to “reduce loud sounds” during a movie without going into settings.

View a Complete List of Siri Commands

Siri can do all sorts of things on the Apple TV, but if you’re not sure where to start, you can simply click the Siri button once and a list of commands will pop up that you can use with Siri.

From there, holding down on the Siri button will activate Siri and you can then say a command.

Check the Strength of Your Apple TV’s Internet Connection

If your content is stuttering and you might think it’s your WiFi signal to the Apple TV that’s the culprit, you can go into Settings > General > About and see your WiFi signal strength at the bottom. It will display in five circles just like on the iPhone.

Play Unsupported Video Files

The Apple TV can only play a handful of video file formats that Apple allows, but with an app called Infuse, you can play any video you throw at the Apple TV.

new-apple-tv-4

However, since you can’t plug in an external hard drive, Infuse will instead play videos from another device, like your laptop or NAS, or even a hard drive plugged into your router via USB.

Watch Live TV

If you don’t want to switch back and forth between your Apple TV and watching live TV, you can get your Apple to play live television using an app called Channels and plugging in an ethernet HD tuner.

Something like the HD Homerun TV tuner can work great, and the Channels app brings the live TV capabilities to life.

9 Comments

9 Comments

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  2. Marlene Oles

    09/25/2015 at 7:58 am

    I want to view my Apple TV through my MacBook Pro. How can I do that? Everything seems geared towards viewing my Mac, iPhone and iPad through Apple TV, I’m trying to do the reverse.

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  4. Bilal Ahmad

    01/19/2016 at 7:31 am

    I am big fan of Apple TV. Thanks for sharing this massive list of very useful tips and tricks.

  5. Ray Kuni

    02/08/2016 at 5:46 pm

    Thank you for this response.

  6. Marc Hamman

    02/19/2016 at 7:37 pm

    Great list! Very informative.

  7. Donna T

    05/10/2016 at 7:22 pm

    As a newbie to Apple TV this is a great list. Thanks very much :)

  8. Rachel

    08/08/2016 at 11:49 am

    I’ve been thinking about investing in Apple TV, and after seeing all of these tips and tricks I’m definitely going to have to get one. I love that they are just as versatile as the Macbooks, and there’s so many shortcuts you can use. Thanks for sharing!

  9. tech

    08/02/2019 at 3:34 am

    if you have more doubts about Apple Tv refer to this articleHow does Apple TV 4K work?

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Apple

iPadOS 14 Problems: 5 Things You Need to Know

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The iPadOS 14 beta squashed a good number of bugs, but issues are present in the first official version of the new operating system.

At long last iPadOS 14 is available for iPad. The software is compatible with all iPad, iPad mini, iPad Air, and iPad Pro models capable of running iPadOS 13.

While much of the talk is about iPadOS 14’s new features, the new software also has numerous under-the-hood improvements on board and some iPad users are noticing a big difference in performance after making the jump.

A lot of the feedback about iPadOS 14 is good, but we’re also hearing about some of the early issues plaguing the firmware. Some of these problems are brand new, others have carried over from iPadOS 13.

In this guide to iPadOS 14 problems we’ll take you through the current state of the software. We’ll show you where to find potential fixes for the most common iPadOS 14 problems and provide you with some resources that could help if you do happen to run into trouble.

We’ll also touch on the state of the iPadOS 13 downgrade and outline what you can expect from Apple and iPadOS 14 down the road.

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iPadOS 14 Problems

iPad mini, iPad Pro, iPad Air, and iPad users are complaining about a variety of bugs and performance issues including some that appear every time Apple releases a new operating system.

The early list of iPadOS 14 problems includes download and installation problems, UI lag, crashes, issues with first and third-party apps, Face ID problems, Wi-Fi issues, and Bluetooth issues.

iPadOS 14 lets users set third-party applications as alternatives to the company’s default mail and browser apps. However, iPad users have discovered that the software reverts these apps to Apple’s whenever a device is restarted. Fortunately, Apple is working on a fix.

The company recently told CNET that it is “aware of an issue that can impact default email and browser settings in iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 and that a “fix will be available to users in a software update.”

If you haven’t downloaded iPadOS 14 yet, we recommend preparing yourself, and your iPad, for the move. A little prep work ahead of time could help you avoid major headaches.

We’ve put together a step-by-step pre-installation process and it will help you get ready for the installation.

Where to Find Feedback

If you’re currently running iPadOS 13 and you’re feeling leery about the move to iPadOS 14, you’ll want to dig into feedback from early adopters.

We also recommend digging around on YouTubeApple’s discussion forums, social media sites like Twitter/Facebook, and the MacRumors forums for additional feedback about the update’s performance.

We’ve also released our list of reasons to, and not to, make the jump to iPadOS 14.

How to Fix iPadOS 14 Problems

Before you contact Apple, have a look at our list of fixes for the most common Apple software problems. You might find the fix you’ve been looking for.

We’ve also released a list of tips that could help you improve your device’s performance and a guide that will show you how to fix  battery life problems.

If you can’t find a fix in those guides, head on over to Apple’s discussion forums. If you don’t find what you’re looking for there, you might want to get in contact with Apple Support via Twitter or via the the company’s website.

If nothing works, you’ll probably want to make an appointment to see a Genius at your local Apple Store if it’s open.

You Can Downgrade from iPadOS 14

If you can’t stand the iPadOS 14 update’s performance on your iPad, you can try downgrading back to iPadOS 13.

Apple is currently signing on iPadOS 13.7 which means you can use a loophole and bring your iPad’s software back if you think it could help improve performance.

Unfortunately, Apple’s no longer signing on iPadOS 13.6.1 or any older versions of iPadOS which means there’s no way back to those updates.

For more about how the downgrade process works, take a look at our detailed walkthrough.

What’s Next

If you’re struggling on iPadOS 14, or you’re nervous about upgrading to Apple’s new operating system, you might want to wait for Apple’s first batch of bug fixes for iPadOS 14 problems.

Apple is currently working on iPadOS 14.2, a new milestone update. The update is currently in beta and it should carry new features and bug fixes.

We don’t have an iPadOS 14.2 release date to look forward to just yet. If you can’t wait for the official release you can download the beta.

There’s a good chance we see another version of iPadOS 14 (iPadOS 14.0.1 or iPadOS 14.1) roll out sooner than iPadOS 14.2 so keep an eye out as we push toward the end of the month.

For more on iPadOS 14.2, take a look at our guide.

4 Reasons Not to Install iPadOS 14 & 11 Reasons You Should

Install iPadOS 14 for Better Security

Install iPadOS 14 for Better Security

If security is important to you, and it should be, think about installing iPadOS 14 right now. 

iPadOS 14 has 11 new security patches on board. If you're interested in the exact nature of these improvements, you can read about them over on Apple's website

If you skipped iPadOS 13.7 or any older versions of iPadOS 13, you'll get the security patches from those updates with your upgrade. They're baked in.

In addition to those patches, iPadOS 14 comes with some security and privacy upgrades including improvements to Home/HomeKit and Safari. 

For instance in Safari, you can now tap the Privacy Report button to better understand how websites handle your privacy.

With iPadOS 14 on board you can now get information on the App Store that will help you understand the privacy practices of apps before you download them. 

There is also a new recording indicator that will appear at the top of your screen whenever an app is using your microphone or camera. You can see if an app has used them recently in Control Center.

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Apple

5 Things to Know About the iPadOS 14.2 Update

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Apple’s confirmed a new iPadOS 14.2 update and the firmware is currently in beta ahead of a release for iPadiPad ProiPad Air, and iPad mini.

iPadOS 14.2 is a milestone upgrade (x.x) for iPadOS which means it should bring a mix of new features and under-the-hood improvements to Apple’s new operating system.

iPadOS 14.2’s arrival came as a bit of a surprise because Apple hasn’t confirmed iPadOS 14.1 yet. There’s a chance iPadOS 14.2 serves as iPadOS 14.0’s successor, but we should see another version of iPadOS 14 arrive before it.

iPad users who don’t want to wait for the official iPadOS 14.2 release don’t have to. The iPadOS 14.2 update is available to try right now via Apple’s beta program.

With iPadOS 14.2 confirmed, we want to take you through everything there is to know about the firmware.

In this guide to iPadOS 14.2 we’ll take you through the update’s known changes, what you can expect from the iPadOS 14.2 release date and release time, key information about the iPadOS 14.2 beta, and more.

iPadOS 14.2 Beta

If you can’t wait for the official release you can download an early version of the iPadOS 14.2 update right now.

Apple’s pushed an iPadOS 14.2 beta to developers. We expect it to release a beta to those enrolled in the Beta Software Program, but it’s unclear when that will happen.

The company’s Beta Software Program is free to anyone with a working Apple ID.

Before you download the iPadOS 14.2 beta on your tablet remember that pre-release software is almost always plagued with bugs and performance issues.

These issues could impact the performance of your core apps, your device’s battery life, and its overall speed which makes the software less than ideal for a daily driver.

You should be able to fix some of these problems on your own, but some bugs and performance problems will probably require a fix from Apple in a future beta or in the official release.

If you can’t stand the beta’s performance you can downgrade back to older software though Apple is only signing on iPadOS 14.0 and iPadOS 13.7. The downgrade path to other updates is closed.

iPadOS 14.2 Release Date

Apple hasn’t confirmed a iPadOS 14.2 release date.

Nothing is confirmed, but the company is reportedly planning to launch iOS 14.1 alongside the new iPhone 12 series in October.  The iPhone 12 launch is expected to take place sometime during the first half of the month.

If that pans out, Apple could release iOS 14.1/iPadOS 14.1 shortly before they arrive on shelves with the iPadOS 14.2 release coming sometime later.

We could also see the iPadOS 14.1 update drop first followed by an iPadOS 14.2 release alongside the new iPhones in late October.

Apple recently told CNET that it is “aware of an issue that can impact default email and browser settings in iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 and that a “fix will be available to users in a software update.”

Given the nature of the bug, we could see a new version of iPadOS 14 (perhaps iPadOS 14.0.1 or iPadOS 14.1) roll out before iPadOS 14.2 arrives.

We’ll let you know when we learn more.

iPadOS 14.2 Release Time

The iPadOS 14.2 release date isn’t known, but we know exactly when Apple will roll the software out on release day.

The official version of iPadOS 14.2 will probably arrive in and around 10AM Pacific. It sometimes takes a few minutes for software updates to show up so don’t be surprised if your update appears after the clock strikes 10AM.

Apple will also release iPadOS 14.2 beta updates in and around 10AM Pacific. The company typically releases new beta updates every 1-2 weeks.

Here’s what you can expect from the iPadOS 14.2 release time in other U.S. timezones:

  • Eastern – 1 PM
  • Central – 12 PM
  • Mountain – 11AM

Keep these times in mind if you plan to install new iPadOS 14.2 betas, or the official version of iPadOS 14.2, right away.

iPadOS 14.2 Update: What’s New

Apple’s x.x updates always bring a mix of features, security patches, and under-the-hood improvements and that’s what you can expect from iPadOS 14.2.

Developers digging through the first iPadOS 14.2 beta have discovered a new Music Recognition control for Control Center. The feature will let users discover music around them.

Apple could add, or subtract, from the iPadOS 14.2 change log as the beta progresses so keep an eye out for changes as the software makes progress behind the scenes.

iPadOS 14.2 Jailbreak

If you still jailbreak, make sure you avoid the iPadOS 14.2 beta. The only way you can jailbreak a device right now is if it’s running an older version of iPadOS 13 or iOS 12.

We don’t expect them to release a tool that’s compatible with the iPadOS 14.2 beta.

4 Reasons Not to Install iPadOS 14 & 11 Reasons You Should

Install iPadOS 14 for Better Security

Install iPadOS 14 for Better Security

If security is important to you, and it should be, think about installing iPadOS 14 right now. 

iPadOS 14 has 11 new security patches on board. If you're interested in the exact nature of these improvements, you can read about them over on Apple's website

If you skipped iPadOS 13.7 or any older versions of iPadOS 13, you'll get the security patches from those updates with your upgrade. They're baked in.

In addition to those patches, iPadOS 14 comes with some security and privacy upgrades including improvements to Home/HomeKit and Safari. 

For instance in Safari, you can now tap the Privacy Report button to better understand how websites handle your privacy.

With iPadOS 14 on board you can now get information on the App Store that will help you understand the privacy practices of apps before you download them. 

There is also a new recording indicator that will appear at the top of your screen whenever an app is using your microphone or camera. You can see if an app has used them recently in Control Center.

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Apple

5 Things to Know About the iPadOS 14.0 Update

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Apple’s pushed its long-awaited iPadOS 14 update to iPad users around the world and the new software could have a big impact on your tablet’s performance.

After several months of testing, iPadOS 14 is finally out of beta and ready to download. It’s a massive upgrade for iPad, iPad Pro, iPad Air, or iPad mini.

If your iPad is currently running iPadOS 13.7, you get the smallest list of changes. If you’re moving up from an older version of iPadOS, your iPadOS 14 update will be more substantial because you’ll get the features and fixes from any software updates you skipped in your upgrade.

With iPadOS 14 out of testing, we want to take you through everything there is to know about Apple’s latest and greatest operating system.

In this guide to the first version of iPadOS 14 we’ll take you through the update’s performance, the current list of iPadOS 14 problems, the best places to find feedback about bugs and performance issues, the iPadOS 14 jailbreak status, and more.

We’ll start with our impressions of iPadOS 14 update’s performance.

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iPadOS 14 Review

If your tablet is currently on iPadOS 13.7, you’ll see a large download.

For iPadOS 13.7 users, the iPadOS 14.0 update requires a 2GB+ download. The exact download size will vary based on your device and the version of iPadOS 13 your device is running. If your slate is on an older version of iPadOS 13 you could see a larger download size.

The iPadOS 14 installation will probably take at least 10 minutes to complete. It took about 15 minutes to install on an older iPad Pro.

For more on the iPadOS 14 download and installation, take a look at our guide.

We’ve been using the iPadOS 14 update on the iPad Pro for a short time and here’s what we’ve learned thus far:

Connectivity

  • Battery life is currently stable.
  • Wi-Fi connectivity is fast and reliable.
  • Bluetooth is working fine.
  • GPS and cellular data are both working normally.

Apps

  • Third-party apps like Netflix, Dark Sky, Twitter, Slack, Asana, Gmail, Chrome, and Spotify are behaving normally.
  • First party apps like Safari, Podcasts, and Calendar are stable as well.

Speed

  • iPadOS 14 feels a bit faster than iPadOS 13.

If you’re dealing with problems on iPadOS 13.7 or an older version of iPadOS 13, you might want to install the iPadOS 14 update on your iPad right now. It could help.

If you need help making a decision, take a look at our list of reasons to, and not to, install iPadOS 14 today.

iPadOS 14 Problems

iPad users are unsurprisingly running into problems with the operating system.

The current list of problems includes some of most common iPadOS issues. The current list includes installation issues, issues with first and third-party apps, issues with Face ID, UI lag, Wi-Fi issues, and Bluetooth issues.

Apple recently told CNET that it is “aware of an issue that can impact default email and browser settings in iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 and that a “fix will be available to users in a software update.”

If you encounter a problem after upgrading, take a look at our list of fixes for the most common software issues. We’ve also released tips that will help you improve performance and some tips that should help you improve battery life.

If you can’t stand the iPadOS 14 update’s performance on your device, you can try downgrading back to iPadOS 13 in an attempt to improve performance. Apple is currently signing on iPadOS 13.7.

You can’t move your iPad’s software back to anything older than iPadOS 13.7. So those of you jumping up from iPadOS 13.6.1 and below need to approach iPadOS 14 with caution. Once you move, there’s no getting back.

New Apple iPad Pro (12.9-inch, Wi-Fi, 512GB) - Space Gray (4th Generation)
  • 12.9-inch edge-to-edge Liquid Retina display with ProMotion, True Tone, and P3 wide color
  • A12Z Bionic chip with Neural Engine
  • 12MP Wide camera, 10MP Ultra Wide camera, and LiDAR Scanner
  • 7MP TrueDepth front camera
  • Face ID for secure authentication and Apple Pay

iPadOS 14 Update: What’s New

Like iOS 14, iPadOS 14 is a huge upgrade and it brings a long list of new features, improvements, and security patches with it.

Here are Apple’s full release notes:

Redesigned Experience

  • Small, medium and large widget sizes allow you to pick the amount of information to display
  • Widget stacks make the most of your Home Screen space and the Smart Stack uses on-device intelligence to surface the right widget at the right time
  • App sidebars have a new look that deliver more of the app’s functionality in the main window
  • New app Toolbars, Pop-Overs and Pull-Down menus make it easier to get to all of the controls for an app

Compact Design

  • Siri has a compact design that allows you to refer to information onscreen and seamlessly launch into your next task
  • Compact Search has a simpler design that works on the Home Screen or over any app
  • Incoming Phone and FaceTime calls appear as a banner at the top of the screen

Search

  • One place where you can find everything: search for apps, contacts, files, quick information like weather and stocks, common knowledge questions about people or places, or even quickly start a web search
  • Top Hit results show the most relevant information including apps, contacts, knowledge, points of interest and websites
  • Quick Launcher allows you to launch an app or website by typing a few characters
  • As-you-type search suggestions show more relevant results as soon as you start typing
  • Web search suggestions to launch Safari and get the most relevant web results
  • Start a search in apps like Mail, Messages and Files

Scribble

  • Write in any text field with Apple Pencil and your writing automatically converts to typed text
  • Scratch to delete a word or space
  • Circle a word to select it for editing
  • Press and hold between words to add space for additional writing
  • Shortcut Palette offers commonly used actions for the app you are using
  • English, Simplified Chinese and Traditional Chinese are supported as well as mixed Chinese and English

Note-taking with Apple Pencil

  • Smart selection makes it easy to select text, distinguishing handwriting from drawings
  • Copy and paste as text converts your handwritten notes into typed text for use in other documents
  • Make space is a new gesture to create more room for handwritten notes
  • Data detectors allow you to take action on phone numbers, email addresses and other handwritten information
  • Shape recognition enables drawing perfect lines, arcs and other shapes

Siri

  • An all-new compact design surfaces results in the bottom right corner of the screen in a new layout
  • Expanded knowledge brings 20x more facts than three years ago
  • Web answers help find answers to a broader set of questions using information from across the internet
  • Audio messages can be sent with Siri on iOS and CarPlay
  • Expanded language support for the new Siri voice and Siri translation

Messages

  • Pinned conversations keep up to nine of your favorite message threads at the top of the list
  • Mentions let you direct a message to an individual in a group conversation
  • Inline replies let you reply to a specific message and see all related messages in their own view
  • Group photos can be customized for a shared group look

Memoji

  • 11 new hairstyles and 19 new headwear styles to customize your Memoji
  • New Memoji stickers to send a fist bump, hug or blush
  • Six added age options
  • Face covering options

Maps

  • Cycling directions provide routes along bike lanes, bike paths, and bike-friendly roads, taking into consideration elevation or how busy a street is
  • Guides offer recommendations for places to eat, meet friends, or explore, curated by a selection of trusted brands
  • Electric vehicle routing helps you plan trips with supported electric vehicles and automatically adds charging stops along your route
  • Congestion zones help you route around or through active zones in cities like London or Paris
  • Speed cameras let you know when you’re approaching speed and red-light cameras along your route
  • Refine Location enables a highly accurate location and orientation when in urban areas with a poor GPS signal

Home

  • Suggested automations help you set up automations with just a tap
  • A visual status at the top of the Home app gives you a summary of accessories that require your attention
  • Dynamic suggestions of the most relevant accessories and scenes appear in Home controls in Control Center
  • Adaptive Lighting automatically adjusts the color of your smart light bulbs throughout the day to maximize comfort and productivity
  • Face Recognition for video cameras and doorbells uses on-device intelligence to let you know who is there based on the people you’ve tagged in your Photos app and recent visitors you identify in the Home app
  • Activity Zones for video cameras and doorbells captures video or sends you a notification only when motion is detected in areas you define

Safari

  • Improved performance with an even faster JavaScript engine
  • A Privacy Report shows cross-site trackers that are being blocked by Intelligent Tracking Prevention
  • Password monitoring securely screens your saved passwords for any that may have been involved in a data breach
  • Web page translation (beta) translates entire web pages in English, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, French, German, Russian or Brazilian Portuguese

AirPods

  • Spatial audio with dynamic head tracking on AirPods Pro places sounds anywhere in space, creating an immersive surround sound experience
  • Automatic device switching transfers audio from your iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, and Mac
  • Battery notifications let you know if you need to charge your AirPods

Augmented Reality

  • Depth API provides more precise distance measurements captured by the LiDAR Scanner on iPad Pro to allow more realistic interactions between virtual and real-world objects
  • Location Anchors in ARKit 4 enables apps to place AR experiences at a specific geographic coordinate
  • Face Tracking is available to support AR experiences through the front camera on iPad Pro 12.9-inch (3rd generation) and later, iPad Pro 11-inch and later
  • Video textures in RealityKit enable apps to apply video to any part of a scene or virtual object

App Clips

  • An App Clip is a small part of an app that developers can create and that is discoverable at the moment you need it, and focused on a specific task
  • Small by design, App Clips are usable in a few seconds
  • Discover app clips at the right moment through scanning QR codes, from Messages, Maps, and Safari
  • Recently used App Clips show up in App Library’s Recently Added category, and you can download the full version of the app if you want to keep it around

Privacy

  • A recording indicator is displayed whenever an app has access to the microphone or camera
  • Approximate location can now be shared with an app, rather than sharing your precise location
  • Limited Photos library access gives you the option to share only selected photos with an app whenever an app asks for access
  • App and web developers can now offer the option for you to upgrade your existing accounts to Sign in with Apple

Accessibility

  • Headphone accommodations amplify soft sounds and adjust certain frequencies, customized for an individual’s hearing
  • Sign language prominence in FaceTime detects when a participant is using sign language and makes the person prominent in a Group FaceTime call
  • Sound Recognition uses on-device intelligence to detect and identify important sounds such as alarms, and alerts you to them using notifications
  • VoiceOver Recognition uses on-device intelligence to recognize elements on your screen to improve VoiceOver support for app and web experiences
  • Image descriptions read complete-sentence descriptions of images and photos within apps and on the web
  • Text recognition speaks the text identified within images and photos
  • Screen Recognition automatically detects interface controls to aid in navigating apps

This release also includes other features and improvements.

App Store

  • Important details about each app are displayed in a glanceable, scrollable view, including a way to see the games your friends are playing

Apple Arcade

  • Coming Soon gives you a sneak peek at upcoming Apple Arcade games and you can automatically download them as soon as they’re released
  • See All Games is improved with sorting and filtering by release date, updates, category, controller support and more
  • Achievements are browsable right from within the Apple Arcade tab
  • Continue Playing makes it easy to resume recently played games across devices
  • Game Center dashboard showcases your profile, friends, achievements, leaderboards and more, all from within your game

Apple Cash Family

  • Apple Cash can be enabled for up to five family members under 18
  • Send money to your child through Messages or by asking Siri
  • Notifications for purchases or person to person payments as they occur
  • Parental controls to limit who your children can send money to
  • Option to turn off Apple Cash for family members under 18
  • Shared oversight with another adult in your Family Sharing group

Camera

  • Quick toggles in Video mode to change video resolution and frame rate from the Camera app
  • Mirror front camera lets you capture selfies that match the front camera preview
  • Improved QR code reading to scan codes, even if they are small or wrapped around objects

FaceTime

  • Improved video quality with up to 1080p resolution on iPad Pro 10.5-inch, iPad Pro 11-inch (1st generation) and later, and iPad Pro 12.9-inch (2nd generation) and later
  • New eye contact feature uses machine learning to subtly adjust the position of your eyes and face to make video calling more natural even when you’re looking at the screen instead of the camera

Files

  • New sidebar and toolbar consolidate controls for quicker access to files and functions
  • APFS encryption support for external drives

Keyboard and International

  • On-device dictation helps protect your privacy by performing all processing completely offline. Dictation in search uses server-based dictation in order to recognize terms you may be searching for from across the Internet.
  • Search within the Emoji keyboard using a word or phrase
  • Keyboard displays AutoFill suggestions from Contacts for email addresses, phone numbers, and more in apps
  • New dictionaries for French-German, Indonesian-English, Japanese-Simplified Chinese, and Polish‑English
  • Wubi input method for Simplified Chinese
  • Autocorrection support for Irish Gaelic and Norwegian Nynorsk
  • Redesigned Japanese Kana keyboard with easier input for numbers
  • Mail supports email addresses using non‑Latin languages

Music

  • A new Listen Now tab for playing and discovering your favorite music, artists, playlists and mixes
  • Autoplay keeps music playing when you reach the end of a song or playlist by finding similar songs to play
  • Search now showcases music for your favorite genres and activities, and shows helpful suggestions as you type
  • Library filtering helps you find artists, albums, playlists and other items in your library even faster

Notes

  • Enhanced actions menu provides easy access to locking, scanning, pinning and deleting
  • Top Hits in search surfaces your most relevant search results
  • Pinned Notes list can be collapsed or expanded
  • Enhanced scanning captures sharper scans and more precise auto-cropping

Photos

  • New sidebar gives you quick access to Albums, Search and Media Types, and makes it easy to edit the order of albums under the My Albums view
  • Filter and sort your collection to more easily locate and organize your photos and videos
  • Pinch and zoom to quickly find your photos and videos in more places, like Favorites and Shared Albums
  • Photos and videos caption support
  • Live Photos taken using iOS 14 or iPadOS 14 will autoplay with improved stabilization in Years, Months and Days View
  • Memories enhancements provide a more relevant selection of photos and videos and a larger music selection for Memory movies
  • Redesigned image picker in apps uses the same smart search from the Photos app to help you easily find content to share

Podcasts

  • Listen Now is smarter and includes your personal episode queue and new episodes picked for you

Reminders

  • Assign reminders to people you share lists with
  • New reminders can be created from the lists screen without having to enter a specific list
  • Smart suggestions let you add dates, times and locations with a tap
  • Personalized lists with emoji and newly added symbols
  • Rearrange or hide smart lists

Settings

  • Option to set your default email and web browser

Shortcuts

  • Starter Shortcuts let you get started with a built-in folder of shortcuts, tailored for you
  • Shortcuts automations are suggested based on your usage patterns
  • Folders let you organize your shortcuts and can be added as widgets to the Home Screen
  • New compact design for running shortcuts keeps you in context while you use another app
  • New Automation triggers can run shortcuts based on receiving an email or message, your battery level, closing an app and more
  • Wind Down Shortcuts provide a collection of relaxing shortcuts to help you get ready for a good night’s sleep

Voice Memos

  • Folders help organize your Voice Memos recordings
  • Favorites lets you mark your best recordings and quickly access them later
  • Smart Folders automatically group together Apple Watch recordings, recently deleted recordings and recordings you marked as Favorites
  • Enhance Recording reduces background noise and room reverberation

iPadOS 14 also has 11 security patches on board and you can read more about those over on Apple’s website.

iPadOS 14 Jailbreak

If you jailbreak your iPad, you’ll have to skip iPadOS 14 for now.

Earlier this year, the developers behind the “unc0ver” jailbreak tool released a new version that’s compatible with iPadOS 13.5 and most versions of iOS/iPadOS going all the way down to iOS 11.0. iOS 12.3-12.3.2 and iOS 12.4.2-12.4.5 are excluded. So are iPadOS 13.5.1, iPadOS 13.6, iPadOS 13.6.1, and iPadOS 13.7.

Unfortunately, we haven’t heard anything about a public iPadOS 14 jailbreak and it could be weeks before we see a tool get released to the public.

What’s Next

If your device is struggling on iPadOS 14, keep your eyes peeled for a new version.

Apple is currently working on iPadOS 14.2. iPadOS 14.2 is currently in beta testing and the milestone upgrade should carry new features and bug fixes.

We don’t have an iPadOS 14.2 release date to look forward to just yet. If you can’t wait for the official release you can download the beta.

For more on iPadOS 14.2, take a look at our guide.

There’s a good chance we see another version of iPadOS 14 (iPadOS 14.0.1 or iPadOS 14.1) roll out sooner than iPadOS 14.2 so keep an eye out.

If you’re feeling leery about the move to iPadOS 14.0, you might want to wait for the next version of iPadOS 14, and its batch of bug fixes, to arrive.

4 Reasons Not to Install iPadOS 14 & 11 Reasons You Should

Install iPadOS 14 for Better Security

Install iPadOS 14 for Better Security

If security is important to you, and it should be, think about installing iPadOS 14 right now. 

iPadOS 14 has 11 new security patches on board. If you're interested in the exact nature of these improvements, you can read about them over on Apple's website

If you skipped iPadOS 13.7 or any older versions of iPadOS 13, you'll get the security patches from those updates with your upgrade. They're baked in.

In addition to those patches, iPadOS 14 comes with some security and privacy upgrades including improvements to Home/HomeKit and Safari. 

For instance in Safari, you can now tap the Privacy Report button to better understand how websites handle your privacy.

With iPadOS 14 on board you can now get information on the App Store that will help you understand the privacy practices of apps before you download them. 

There is also a new recording indicator that will appear at the top of your screen whenever an app is using your microphone or camera. You can see if an app has used them recently in Control Center.

Last update on 2020-09-18. This post may contain affiliate links. Click here to read our disclosure policy for more details. Images via Amazon API

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Apple

5 Things to Know About the iOS 14.0 Update

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Apple’s released its long-awaited iOS 14 update and the software a long list of features and under-the-hood improvements to the iPhone.

After several months of testing, iOS 14 is out of beta and ready to download. As expected it’s a huge upgrade for the iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone SE, iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X, iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max, and the iPhone SE 2.

If your phone is currently running iOS 13.7, you get the smallest list of changes. If you’re moving up from an older version of iOS, your iOS 14 update will be more substantial because you’ll get the features and fixes from the updates you skipped in your upgrade.

Now that iOS 14 is out of beta, we want to take you through everything there is to know about Apple’s latest operating system for iPhone.

In this guide to the first version of iOS 14 we’ll take you through the update’s performance, the current list of iOS 14 problems, the best places to find feedback about bugs and performance issues, the iOS 14 jailbreak status, and more.

We’ll start with our impressions of iOS 14 update’s performance on iPhone.

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iOS 14 Review

If your iPhone is currently running iOS 13.7, you’ll see a large download.

For iOS 13.7 users, the iOS 14.0 update requires a 2GB+ download. The exact download size will vary based on your device and the version of iOS 13 your iPhone is currently running.

If your iPhone is running an older version of iOS 13 you’ll likely see a larger download size because, again, your iOS 14 update includes the changes from any iOS updates you skipped.

If your phone is on iOS 13.7, the iOS 14 installation will probably take at least 10 minutes to complete. It took about 15 minutes to install on an iPhone X.

For more on the iOS 14 download and installation, take a look at our guide.

We’ve been using the final version of iOS 14 for a short time and here’s what we’ve learned about its performance thus far:

Connectivity

  • Battery life is currently stable.
  • Wi-Fi connectivity is fast and reliable.
  • Bluetooth is working normally.
  • GPS and cellular data are stable.

Apps

  • Third-party apps including Netflix, Dark Sky, Twitter, Slack, Asana, Gmail, Chrome, and Spotify are running fine at the moment.
  • First party apps like Safari, Podcasts, and Calendar are also stable right now.

Speed

  • iOS 14 feels faster than iOS 13.7 did.

If your iPhone is struggling with bugs or performance issues on iOS 13.7 or an older version of iOS 13, you should think about installing iOS 14 right now.

If you need help making a decision, please check out our reasons to, and not to, install the iOS 14 update. It will help you decide if upgrading is worth it.

We’re in the process of publishing our mini iOS 14 reviews for the iPhone 11, iPhone XS, iPhone XR, iPhone X, iPhone 8, iPhone 7, iPhone 6s, and iPhone SE so make sure you check those for additional feedback when they’re live.

New Apple MacBook Pro (13-inch, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD Storage, Magic Keyboard) - Space Gray
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New Apple MacBook Pro (13-inch, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD Storage, Magic Keyboard) - Space Gray
  • Tenth-generation quad-core Intel Core i5 processor
  • Brilliant Retina display with True Tone technology
  • Backlit Magic Keyboard
  • Touch Bar and Touch ID
  • Intel Iris Plus Graphics

iOS 14 Problems

The iOS 14 update is already causing problems for some iPhone users. Some of these issues are brand new, others have carried over from iOS 13.

The current list of iOS 14 issues includes installation problems, lag, Exchange issues, problems with first and third-party apps, hotspot problems, weird battery drain, issues with Touch ID and Face ID, and various other bugs.

The company recently told CNET that it is “aware of an issue that can impact default email and browser settings in iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 and that a “fix will be available to users in a software update.”

If you run into an issue on iOS 14, take a look at our list of fixes for the most common iOS 14 problems. We’ve also released tips that could help you improve your phone’s performance and tips to help fix bad iOS 14 battery life.

If you can’t handle the iOS 14 update’s performance, you can try moving back to iOS 13. Apple is signing on the previous version of iOS 13 (iOS 13.7).

The company isn’t signing on iOS 13.6.1, or any older versions of iOS 13, so there’s no way back to those updates.

iOS 14 Update: What’s New

iOS 14 is a massive upgrade and brings a long list of new features, improvements, and security patches to the iPhone.

Here are Apple’s release notes:

All-new widgets

  • Redesigned widgets can be placed right on the Home Screen
  • Small, medium and large widget sizes allow you to pick the amount of information to display
  • Widget stacks make the most of your Home Screen space and the Smart Stack uses on-device intelligence to surface the right widget at the right time
  • Widget gallery includes all available widgets to browse and choose from
  • Redesigned Apple widgets for Weather, Clock, Calendar, News, Maps, Fitness, Photos, Reminders, Stocks, Music, TV, Tips, Notes, Shortcuts, Battery, Screen Time, Files, Podcasts, and Siri Suggestions

App Library

  • The App Library automatically organizes all of your apps into categories
  • The Suggestions category uses on-device intelligence to show apps you’re likely to be looking for based on factors like time of day or location
  • The Recently Added category shows apps that were recently downloaded from the App Store, as well as App Clips that were recently launched
  • Ability to hide Home Screen pages to get to the App Library even faster by tapping on the dots at the bottom of the screen while in jiggle mode

Compact design

  • Incoming Phone and FaceTime calls appear as a banner at the top of the screen
  • Siri has a compact design that allows you to refer to information onscreen and seamlessly launch into your next task
  • Picture in Picture enables watching a video or taking a FaceTime call while you use another app

Messages

  • Pinned conversations keep up to nine of your favorite message threads at the top of the list
  • Mentions let you direct a message to an individual in a group conversation
  • Inline replies let you reply to a specific message and see all related messages in their own view
  • Group photos can be customized for a shared group look

Memoji

  • 11 new hairstyles and 19 new headwear styles to customize your Memoji
  • New Memoji stickers to send a fist bump, hug or blush
  • Six added age options
  • Face covering options

Maps

  • Cycling directions provide routes along bike lanes, bike paths, and bike-friendly roads, taking into consideration elevation or how busy a street is
  • Guides offer recommendations for places to eat, meet friends, or explore, curated by a selection of trusted brands
  • Electric vehicle routing helps you plan trips with supported electric vehicles and automatically adds charging stops along your route
  • Congestion zones help you route around or through active zones in cities like London or Paris
  • Speed cameras let you know when you’re approaching speed and red-light cameras along your route
  • Refine Location enables a highly accurate location and orientation when in urban areas with a poor GPS signal

App Clips

  • An App Clip is a small part of an app that developers can create and that is discoverable at the moment you need it, and focused on a specific task
  • Small by design, App Clips are usable in a few seconds
  • Discover App Clips through tapping NFC tags or scanning QR codes, from Messages, Maps, and Safari
  • Recently used App Clips show up in App Library’s Recently Added category, and you can download the full version of the app if you want to keep it around

Translate

  • The new Translate app is designed for conversations and can work completely offline so your conversations stay private
  • A split-screen design in conversation mode has a single microphone button that automatically detects which of the selected languages is being spoken and transcribes the original and translated text on the correct sides of the screen
  • Attention mode shows translations in larger text so you can capture someone’s attention
  • Voice and text translations are supported for any combination of 11 languages

Siri

  • A new compact design allows you to refer to information onscreen and seamlessly launch into your next task
  • Expanded knowledge brings 20x more facts than three years ago
  • Web answers help find answers to a broader set of questions using information from across the internet
  • Audio messages can be sent with Siri on iOS and CarPlay
  • Expanded language support for the new Siri voice and Siri translation

Search

  • One place where you can find everything: search for apps, contacts, files, quick information like weather and stocks, common knowledge questions about people or places, or even quickly start a web search
  • Top Hit results show the most relevant information including apps, contacts, knowledge, points of interest and websites
  • Quick Launcher allows you to launch an app or website by typing a few characters
  • As-you-type search suggestions show more relevant results as soon as you start typing
  • Web search suggestions to launch Safari and get the most relevant web results
  • Start a search in apps like Mail, Messages and Files

Home

  • Suggested automations help you set up automations with just a tap
  • A visual status at the top of the Home app gives you a summary of accessories that require your attention
  • Dynamic suggestions of the most relevant accessories and scenes appear in Home controls in Control Center
  • Adaptive Lighting automatically adjusts the color of your smart light bulbs throughout the day to maximize comfort and productivity
  • Face Recognition for video cameras and doorbells uses on-device intelligence to let you know who is there based on the people you’ve tagged in your Photos app and recent visitors you identify in the Home app
  • Activity Zones for video cameras and doorbells captures video or sends you a notification only when motion is detected in areas you define

Safari

  • Improved performance with an even faster JavaScript engine
  • A Privacy Report shows cross-site trackers that are being blocked by Intelligent Tracking Prevention
  • Password monitoring securely screens your saved passwords for any that may have been involved in a data breach
  • Web page translation (beta) translates entire web pages in English, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, French, German, Russian or Brazilian Portuguese

Weather

  • Next-hour precipitation chart shows a minute-by-minute forecast of the intensity of rain or snow over the coming hour for the U.S.
  • Severe weather information displays government-issued alerts about certain severe weather events including tornados, winter storms, flash floods and more, for the U.S., Europe, Japan, Canada, and Australia

AirPods

  • Spatial audio with dynamic head tracking on AirPods Pro places sounds anywhere in space, creating an immersive surround sound experience
  • Automatic device switching transfers audio from your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac
  • Battery notifications let you know if you need to charge your AirPods

Privacy

  • A recording indicator is displayed whenever an app has access to the microphone or camera
  • Approximate location can now be shared with an app, rather than sharing your precise location
  • Limited Photos library access gives you the option to share only selected photos with an app whenever an app asks for access
  • App and web developers can now offer the option for you to upgrade your existing accounts to Sign in with Apple

Accessibility

  • Back Tap is a quick way to trigger accessibility features by tapping on the back of your iPhone
  • Headphone accommodations amplify soft sounds and adjust certain frequencies, customized for an individual’s hearing
  • Sign language prominence in FaceTime detects when a participant is using sign language and makes the person prominent in a Group FaceTime call
  • Sound Recognition uses on-device intelligence to detect and identify important sounds such as alarms, and alerts you to them using notifications
  • VoiceOver Recognition uses on-device intelligence to recognize elements on your screen to improve VoiceOver support for app and web experiences
  • Image descriptions read complete-sentence descriptions of images and photos within apps and on the web
  • Text recognition speaks the text identified within images and photos
  • Screen Recognition automatically detects interface controls to aid in navigating apps

This release also includes other features and improvements.

App Store

  • Important details about each app are displayed in a glanceable, scrollable view, including a way to see the games your friends are playing

Apple Arcade

  • Coming Soon gives you a sneak peek at upcoming Apple Arcade games and you can automatically download them as soon as they’re released
  • See All Games is improved with sorting and filtering by release date, updates, category, controller support and more
  • Achievements are browsable right from within the Apple Arcade tab
  • Continue Playing makes it easy to resume recently played games across devices
  • Game Center dashboard showcases your profile, friends, achievements, leaderboards and more, all from within your game

Apple Cash Family

  • Apple Cash can be enabled for up to five family members under 18
  • Send money to your child through Messages or by asking Siri
  • Notifications for purchases or person to person payments as they occur
  • Parental controls to limit who your children can send money to
  • Option to turn off Apple Cash for family members under 18
  • Shared oversight with another adult in your Family Sharing group

Augmented Reality

  • Location Anchors in ARKit 4 enables apps to place AR experiences at a specific geographic coordinate
  • Extended face tracking support is extended to the new iPhone SE
  • Video textures in RealityKit enable apps to apply video to any part of a scene or virtual object

Camera

  • Improved shot-to-shot performance speeds up the time to first shot and makes shooting photos even faster
  • QuickTake video can now also be captured on iPhone XS and iPhone XR when in Photo mode
  • Quick toggles in Video mode to change video resolution and frame rate from the Camera app
  • Updated Night mode capture experience on iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro provides guidance to help you stay steady throughout the capture, as well as an option to cancel the shot mid-capture
  • Exposure compensation control lets you lock an exposure value for an entire camera session
  • Mirror front camera lets you capture selfies that match the front camera preview
  • Improved QR code reading to scan codes, even if they are small or wrapped around objects

CarPlay

  • New categories of supported apps for parking, EV charging, and quick food-ordering
  • Wallpaper options
  • Share ETA and send audio messages with Siri
  • Horizontal status bar support for cars with portrait screens
  • Chinese and Japanese keyboard support gives users an additional option to search for points of interest

FaceTime

  • Improved video quality with up to 1080p resolution on iPhone X and later
  • New eye contact feature uses machine learning to subtly adjust the position of your eyes and face to make video calling more natural even when you’re looking at the screen instead of the camera

Files

  • APFS encryption support for external drives

Health

  • Wind Down helps you create a pre-bedtime routine with apps and shortcuts, like listening to a relaxing playlist
  • Custom sleep schedules help you meet your sleep goals with bedtime reminders and wakeup alarms
  • Sleep mode minimizes distractions during Wind Down and Bedtime by turning on Do Not Disturb and simplifying your Lock screen
  • Health Checklist helps you track and manage health and safety features in one place
  • New Mobility category in the Health app, including metrics like walking speed, double support time, step length, and walking asymmetry

Keyboard and International

  • On-device dictation helps protect your privacy by performing all processing completely offline. Dictation in search uses server-based dictation in order to recognize terms you may be searching for from across the Internet.
  • Search within the Emoji keyboard using a word or phrase
  • Keyboard displays AutoFill suggestions from Contacts for email addresses, phone numbers, and more in apps
  • New dictionaries for French-German, Indonesian-English, Japanese-Simplified Chinese, and Polish‑English
  • Wubi input method for Simplified Chinese
  • Autocorrection support for Irish Gaelic and Norwegian Nynorsk
  • Redesigned Japanese Kana keyboard with easier input for numbers
  • Mail supports email addresses using non‑Latin languages

Music

  • A new Listen Now tab for playing and discovering your favorite music, artists, playlists and mixes
  • Autoplay keeps music playing when you reach the end of a song or playlist by finding similar songs to play
  • Search now showcases music for your favorite genres and activities, and shows helpful suggestions as you type
  • Library filtering helps you find artists, albums, playlists and other items in your library even faster

Notes

  • Enhanced actions menu provides easy access to locking, scanning, pinning and deleting
  • Top Hits in search surfaces your most relevant search results
  • Pinned Notes list can be collapsed or expanded
  • Shape recognition enables drawing perfect lines, arcs and other shapes
  • Enhanced scanning captures sharper scans and more precise auto-cropping

Photos

  • Filter and sort your collection to more easily locate and organize your photos and videos
  • Pinch and zoom to quickly find your photos and videos in more places, like Favorites and Shared Albums
  • Photos and videos caption support
  • Live Photos taken using iOS 14 or iPadOS 14 will autoplay with improved stabilization in Years, Months and Days View
  • Memories enhancements provide a more relevant selection of photos and videos and a larger music selection for Memory movies
  • Redesigned image picker in apps uses the same smart search from the Photos app to help you easily find content to share

Podcasts

  • Listen Now is smarter and includes your personal episode queue and new episodes picked for you

Reminders

  • Assign reminders to people you share lists with
  • New reminders can be created from the lists screen without having to enter a specific list
  • Smart suggestions let you add dates, times and locations with a tap
  • Personalized lists with emoji and newly added symbols
  • Rearrange or hide smart lists

Settings

  • Option to set your default email and web browser

Shortcuts

  • Starter Shortcuts let you get started with a built-in folder of shortcuts, tailored for you
  • Shortcuts automations are suggested based on your usage patterns
  • Folders let you organize your shortcuts and can be added as widgets to the Home Screen
  • New compact design for running shortcuts keeps you in context while you use another app
  • New Automation triggers can run shortcuts based on receiving an email or message, your battery level, closing an app and more
  • Wind Down Shortcuts provide a collection of relaxing shortcuts to help you get ready for a good night’s sleep

Voice Memos

  • Folders help organize your Voice Memos recordings
  • Favorites lets you mark your best recordings and quickly access them later
  • Smart Folders automatically group together Apple Watch recordings, recently deleted recordings and recordings you marked as Favorites
  • Enhance Recording reduces background noise and room reverberation

iOS 14 also has 11 security patches on board and you can read more about those over on Apple’s website.

iOS 14 Jailbreak

If you jailbreak your iPhone, you’ll have to skip iOS 14 for now.

Earlier this year, the developers behind the “unc0ver” jailbreak tool for iOS released a new version that’s compatible with iOS 13.5 and most versions of iOS going all the way down to iOS 11.0. iOS 12.3-12.3.2 and iOS 12.4.2-12.4.5 are excluded. So are iOS 13.5.1, iOS 13.6, iOS 13.6.1, and iOS 13.7.

The jailbreak tool is compatible with all iOS 13-powered devices including newer iPhone models.

Unfortunately, we haven’t heard anything about a public iOS 14 jailbreak and it could be weeks before we see a tool released to the public.

What’s Next

If your device is struggling on iOS 14, know that help is on the way.

Apple is currently working on iOS 14.2. iOS 14.2 is currently in beta and the milestone upgrade should carry new features and bug fixes for initial iOS 14 problems.

We don’t have an iOS 14.2 release date to look forward to just yet. If you can’t wait for the official release you can download the beta.

For more on iOS 14.2, take a look at our guide.

There’s a good chance we see another version of iOS 14 (iOS 14.0.1 or iOS 14.1) roll out sooner than iOS 14.2 so keep an eye out as we push deeper into the month.

Bottom line, if you’re feeling leery about the move to iOS 14.0, you might want to wait for the next version of iOS 14, and its batch of bug fixes, to arrive.

4 Reasons Not to Install iOS 14 & 11 Reasons You Should

Install iOS 14 for Better Security

Install iOS 14 for Better Security

If security is important to you, think about installing the iOS 14 update right away.

iOS 14 brings 11 new security patches to your iPhone. If you're interested in the exact nature of these improvements, you can read about them over on Apple's website.

If you skipped iOS 13.7 or any older versions of iOS 13, you'll get the security patches from those updates with your iOS 14 update. 

In addition to those patches, iOS 14 comes with some security and privacy upgrades including improvements to Home/HomeKit and Safari. 

For instance in Safari, you can now tap the Privacy Report button to better understand how websites handle your privacy.

With iOS 14 on board you can now get information on the App Store that will help you understand the privacy practices of apps before you download them. 

There is also a new recording indicator that will appear at the top of your screen whenever an app is using your microphone or camera. You can see if an app has used them recently in Control Center.

Last update on 2020-09-18. This post may contain affiliate links. Click here to read our disclosure policy for more details. Images via Amazon API

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7 Things to Know About the iPhone 7 iOS 14 Update

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Apple’s finally released its iOS 14 update and the new operating system could have a tremendous impact on your iPhone 7’s performance.

After a year on iOS 13, the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus have made the move to Apple’s new iOS 14 software.

As expected, iOS 14 is a huge upgrade for both models as it’s chock full of new features, upgrades, and under-the-hood improvements. It also has important security patches on board.

Many iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus users have made the jump up to iOS 14 and we’ve seen a lot of positive feedback in the early going.

We’ve also heard about a number of problems with the software with some users encountering an early batch of bugs and performance issues.

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If you make the decision to download iOS 14, note that it requires a lot of free space on your internal storage. It’s a 2GB+ download.

If you’re running an older version of iOS, your iOS 14 upgrade could be larger because the features and fixes from iOS updates you skipped are baked in.

With that in mind, we want to take you through the most important things to know, right now, about the iPhone 7’s iOS 14 update.

Our walkthrough will guide you through the software’s initial problems, the downgrade status, the iOS 14 jailbreak, and the iPhone 7 iOS 14 update’s performance.

We’ll start with the operating system’s early performance. We’ve been testing the iPhone 7’s iOS 14 update for a short time and here’s what we’ve learned thus far.

iPhone 7 iOS 14 Impressions & Performance

We’ve been testing the official version of iOS 14 on an iPhone 7 for a very short time and we’ve come away pretty impressed with the software’s performance.

While some iPhone 7 users have noticed bugs and performance issues, iOS 14 is performing at a high level on the device in our possession.

The software feels extremely snappy. It’s noticeably faster than iOS 13. Apps open faster and the software’s animations and transitions are crisp.

We haven’t noticed any slowdown in problem areas like Notification Center, Control Center, or the keyboard. There are areas where we’ve seen sluggish performance in the past.

Battery life is very strong at the moment and we haven’t noticed any issues with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and GPS. All of these connections are strong.

Our core apps, a list that includes apps like Netflix, Chrome, Gmail, Dark Sky, Asana, and Slack, are all stable. We haven’t noticed any hiccups.

App developers are currently rolling out iOS 14 support updates so if you’re having issues with your apps, make sure you’re running the latest version.

Overall, iOS 14 is treating our iPhone 7 well. We haven’t stumbled upon any massive bugs nor have we run into any catastrophic performance issues. It’s early, but this is a good sign.

As of right now we’re recommending iOS 14 to most users. That said, if you’re having a good experience on iOS 13, you might want to wait for more longterm feedback.

If you need more help making a decision, have a look at our reasons to, and not to, install iOS 14 right now.

How to Prepare for iOS 14

If you’re planning to make a move to iOS 14, make sure you prepare for the upgrade.

While some of you might see a performance boost after upgrading, many others will run into trouble. This is why it’s important to prepare yourself, and your device, for the transition.

To assist you we’ve released a pre-installation guide that will take you step-by-step through the process we typically use before we install new iOS software on our phones.

If you’re new to iOS or you just want to play it safe, it could help. If you don’t have a ton of time to devote to the pre-installation process you’ll at the very least want to make sure your files are backed up before you tap download.

iPhone 7 iOS 14 Problems & Fixes

We’re having a very good experience on iOS 14, some iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus users are running into problems.

The current list includes abnormal battery drain, connectivity issues, UI lag, issues with first and third-party apps, issues with Touch ID, Exchange issues, and many more. Note that this is extremely common after a major iOS release.

If these problems have you feeling leery about an upgrade to iOS 14, you might want to hang back and wait for Apple’s first batch of bug fixes.

If you’re already running iOS 14, and you’re dealing with issues, have a look at our fixes for the most common iOS 14 problems. It’s a great place to start.

We’ve also released tips to improve iOS 14 battery life and a guide to fixing bad iOS performance.

iOS 13 Downgrade Open

If you move your iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus to iOS 14, and you hate the performance, you might try moving your phone back to iOS 13.

Apple is currently signing on iOS 13.7 which means you can drop your iPhone’s software back to the final version of iOS 13. If you were having a good experience on iOS 13.7, it could help.

The company won’t sign on iOS 13 forever so if you really want to get your iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus off of iOS 14, you’ll need to move soon. Once Apple stops signing on iOS 13.7, there won’t be a way back to the operating system.

If you’re unfamiliar with the downgrade process, take a look at our guide.

iPhone 7 iOS 14 Update: What’s New

The iPhone 7’s version of iOS 14 is robust. The devices miss out on a few features, but all of iOS 14’s key components are on board.

The list includes Widgets on the home screen, improvements to Messages and Maps, the new Translate app, and a laundry list of changes to Siri.

We’ve put together a guide that will take you through some of iOS 14’s best features and it’s worth a look if you haven’t been following along.

If you’re moving to iOS 14 from an older version of iOS 13 you’ll, again, get the features and fixes from any updates you skipped. We also have a guide that goes over the latest iOS 13 features and you should check it out if you’re playing catchup.

What’s Next for the iPhone 7 & iPhone 7 Plus

We probably won’t have to wait long for the next version of iOS 14.

Apple recently told CNET that it is “aware of an issue that can impact default email and browser settings in iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 and that a “fix will be available to users in a software update.” It didn’t call the version out by name.

The company recently confirmed iOS 14.2 and there’s also been chatter about an iOS 14.1 release alongside the iPhone 12 series in October. We could also see a fast iOS 14.0.1 release.

One way or another, we should see a new version of iOS 14 roll out soon and that should be music to the ears of iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus users dealing with issues on the current version.

iPhone 7 iOS 14 Jailbreak

Developers have released an iOS 13 jailbreak tool that’s compatible with iOS 13.5 and older versions of iOS 13. However, we haven’t seen anything on the iOS 14 front just yet.

Earlier this year the developers behind the “unc0ver” jailbreaking tool released version 5.0.0. It’s compatible with iOS 13.5 and most versions of iOS that fall between iOS 13.5 and iOS 11.0.

It doesn’t work with iOS 12.3-12.3.2, iOS 12.4.2-12.4.5, or iOS 13.7-iOS 13.5.1. It doesn’t work with the current version of iOS 14 either.

For more on the iOS 13 jailbreak, head here.

4 Reasons Not to Install iOS 14 & 11 Reasons You Should

Install iOS 14 for Better Security

Install iOS 14 for Better Security

If security is important to you, think about installing the iOS 14 update right away.

iOS 14 brings 11 new security patches to your iPhone. If you're interested in the exact nature of these improvements, you can read about them over on Apple's website.

If you skipped iOS 13.7 or any older versions of iOS 13, you'll get the security patches from those updates with your iOS 14 update. 

In addition to those patches, iOS 14 comes with some security and privacy upgrades including improvements to Home/HomeKit and Safari. 

For instance in Safari, you can now tap the Privacy Report button to better understand how websites handle your privacy.

With iOS 14 on board you can now get information on the App Store that will help you understand the privacy practices of apps before you download them. 

There is also a new recording indicator that will appear at the top of your screen whenever an app is using your microphone or camera. You can see if an app has used them recently in Control Center.

Last update on 2020-09-18. This post may contain affiliate links. Click here to read our disclosure policy for more details. Images via Amazon API

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This article may contain affiliate links. Click here for more details.

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