iOS 16 to feature upgraded lock screen, revamped messaging and health apps

iOS 16 is expected to feature an upgraded lock screen with interactive wallpapers, social networking capabilities in messages, always-on display support, an enhanced Health app, and more, while iPadOS 16 is expected to feature improvements to multitasking, with potential windows mode for apps. These details have come from the latest Power On newsletter by Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman.

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iOS 16 features

Apple’s upcoming mobile operating system iOS 16, is codenamed Sydney. Unlike previously speculated, it is indeed a major upgrade. Changes are expected in features ranging from notifications to the Messages app, Health app, and lock screen. iPad features like multitasking are also expected to receive some attention yet again.

Lock screen

With iOS 16, Apple is working on always-on display support. This will help show information on the screen when it is locked, similar to how Apple Watch and various Android smartphones work right now. These are usually glanceable notifications such as new emails, messages, or calendar information. However, this feature is expected to be limited to just the new iPhone 14 models.

Gurman’s explanation for this limitation is that the feature would require the iPhone to turn down the frame rate considerably so that it would save battery life when the feature is enabled. One would expect that iPhone 13 Pro with ProMotion display support would also be able to support the feature but it does not seem so.

The newsletter also mentions new interactive wallpapers for the lock screen, which will have widget-like functionality. This would be a great feature if Apple opens it up to third-party developers too.

Messages

The Messages app will be getting new social network-like features focused on audio messages. It is unclear what exactly this means. Apple’s previous foray into a social network, Ping, was not exactly a success but it will be interesting to see the company provide social networking features focused on privacy which would be useful for customers using iOS and macOS.

Health

The Health app will still not make its way to iPad, despite support for Fitness+. This is unfortunate as users who own an iPad would love to have their information accessible from the device. However, the Health app will be getting a number of new features for iPhone and Apple Watch. Gurman has not shared any specific details regarding the features though.

Updates to tvOS, macOS and watchOS

The newsletter also shares some minor tidbits on other operating system updates that Apple will be announced at WWDC 2022:

  • tvOS will get improved support for smart home features. This could likely include support for Matter.
  • macOS update will include redesigned default apps and a revamp to System Preferences to make it similar to the iOS Settings app.
  • watchOS will get a new low-power mode, as well as improved watch faces, as well as user interface improvements.

We are almost a week away from WWDC 2022, which will start on June 6. Stay tuned as we share the latest updates through the event.

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