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Apple iOS 15 now available. Should you upgrade right away? Maybe not.
In the past some iOS upgrades broke important things like Wifi or sometimes it broke some of your favorite apps.
Please break Facebook please break Facebook.
Okay, so maybe not. Developers were given ample access to the beta releases of iOS 15. Betas you may recall are pre-release versions of software that folks who are brave are often encouraged to try out.
But the new version of iOS comes out with new features such as ads for Ted Lasso saying you should watch it on Apple TV. And I admit I am a huge fan of this show. Everyone but the main character cusses like a sailor and that is rough but I love this show. Every episode except for the September 17th episode focused on Coach Beard has made me laugh out loud so many times.
Let’s talk about new features:
Focus is probably my new feature. Think of it as “Do Not Disturb” for the waking hours. You can tell your device which apps you want to allow to notify you while you are “Focusing” . I don’t know about you but there are games that send notifications that I could just not care about when I am supposed to be working. Okay, apps I need to not tempt me while I am working I should say. So with Focus, you can tell it what apps you want to allow while you are busy but can’t set your phone to Do Not Disturb.
The enhancements to Facetime are exciting. You can blur your background, group chat, schedule chats a la Zoom style. Share a link with your Windows and Android friends so they can join your Facetime.
And now there is SharePlay, which is a way to have watch or listening parties using Facetime and most apps on your phone. Say Apple+ to watch “Ted Lasso”. Or maybe sharing HBO Max viewing parties? And you can share your Keynote presentation if you really want to do business while using Facetime. Think of Facetime as Zoom Meetings Lite.
Apple Maps got a big upgrade though I think the screens look a little like the game Civilization IV. I prefer Google Maps but they have a new walking feature and I haven’t tried it yet as it is too new but it could be Apple Maps when you are on a walking tour is a better option than Google Maps in a metro area or a well visited location.
iCloud+ is now easier to share with family, also they have “Private Relay” that is kind of like VPN (virtual private networks) that allows you to private browse on Safari and potentially other apps. I will have to get back to you on that but so far only Safari seems to be involved.
Speaking of Safari, Safari on your mobile device will now allow extensions. You can use the Honey extension to find deals on your mobile device. There are other extensions as well. They also updated Safari on the Mac so you will be able to do Private Relay on the Mac as well.
If you are an Apple Wallet fan and your state allows it, you can store your driver’s license on your phone. Let’s hope they have it secured well or it could be the next big security story. You can of course store your Covid-19 Vaccine card as well if you happen to have one.
Should you upgrade?
Firsts, backup. To me Photos are the most important thing. If you use Google Photos or iCloud to backup your photos, do it before you update.
Make sure you have enough space for a 4 Gig install. Granted it will overwrite the old OS but you have to be able to download the new update before it installs
If you are brave, make sure your phone is fully charged before you start
Make sure you are on WIFI as it is too big to do via Mobile unless you have unlimited and true 5G.
- Be sure you can afford to be without your phone for about 30 – 45 minutes