iOS 16 was unveiled yesterday at WWDC 2022 with a huge redesign for the Lock Screen. Apple has given the Lock Screen a complete revamp allowing users to customize it to their liking by adding different widgets, changing the font, dynamic wallpapers, and more. That does not seem to be all. New references to an always-on display have recently been discovered in iOS 16 suggesting the feature could come to the iPhone 14 Pro.
iOS 16 contains new frameworks related to an always-on display
Prior to Apple’s WWDC 22 keynote, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman reported that the tech giant is working on an always-on display that will show information on the screen when it is locked, similar to the Apple Watch and Android smartphones. This glanceable information can include new emails, messages, or calendar information. Unfortunately, the functionality will be restricted to the iPhone 14 Pro models.
As discovered by 9to5Mac, there are multiple references in iOS 16 that confirm the existence of support for an always-on display. The publication reports, “Within iOS 16, there are three new frameworks that have been added that relate to backlight management of the iPhone’s display.” Backlight management is a significant element of making an always-on feature work.
While it could be argued that the references relate to the always-on display of the Apple Watch, 9to5Mac reports that is not the case as it specifically references components of iOS.
All of the frameworks discovered by 9to5Mac are used by different components of iOS, including the Lock Screen. Additionally, and most notably, there are multiple references to an always-on display within the Springboard — which is what manages the Lock Screen (and home screen) of iPhone. Apple Watch does not use Springboard.
Lastly, there are also hidden flags within the code of iOS 16 which could allow Apple engineers to test the functionality on unsupported devices i.e. the iPhone 13 Pro since the iPhone 14 Pro models are currently under production.
The software update will be released to the general public in the fall alongside the iPhone 14 lineup. The first developer beta of iOS 16 has been released for developers and a public beta will become available in July.
- iOS 16 updates Apple Maps with new Multistop routing, Pay for Transit and other features
- iOS 16 brings smarter and more intuitive Siri, Dictation, and Live Text features
- iOS 16 privacy features: Safety Check, lock hidden photo albums, and others
- Messages in iOS 16: edit and undo sending messages, SharePlay and more
- iPadOS 16 announced – Weather app, Freeform, Pro features, improvements to multitasking and more
- watchOS 9 introduces new watch faces, sleep stages, AFib History feature and more