As expected, Apple today has released iOS 13.3, iPadOS 13.3, tvOS 13.3, and watchOS 6.1.1 to the public. These updates include bug fixes and performance improvements, as well as some notable new features and customization options.
iOS 13.3 and iPadOS 13.3
For the iPhone and iPad, iOS 13.3 and iPadOS 13.3 include support for Communication Limits in Screen Time. This allows you to set specific limitations on who and when you can communicate with. During allotted screen time, you can allow communication with everyone, but during downtime you could limit communication to certain people.
This feature is especially useful for parents. For example, parents can block their kids from communication with everyone except themselves after a certain time of day. Screen Time Communication Limits apply to the Phone app, Messages app, and FaceTime.
Another change in iOS 13.3 is a new setting that allows you to disable the Memoji and Animoji stickers from always appearing on the emoji keyboard. With iOS 13, Apple increased the prominence of its Memoji stickers by placing them directly alongside regular emojis. Following complaints from many users about this change, Apple has added this new setting with iOS 13.3. This option can be found in Settings > General > Keyboard > Emoji.
iOS 13.3 also has new security features. The Safari browser also supports FIDO2 security keys over Lightning, USB or NFC. You can read more about that change here.
Other changes in iOS 13.3 include a variety of bug fixes and performance improvements, updates to Apple News, wireless charging improvements, and more. Here are the full release notes:
- New parental controls provide more communication limits over who their children can call, FaceTime, or Message
- Contact list for children lets parents manage the contacts that appear on their children’s devices
- New layout for Apple News+ stories from The Wall Street Journal and other leading newspapers
- Easily like or dislike stories with a tap
- Stories from Apple News are now available in Canada in English and French
- Continue reading with links to related stories or more stories from the same publication
This update also includes bug fixes and other improvements. This update:
- Enables the creation of a new video clip when trimming a video in Photos
- Adds support for NFC, USB, and Lightning FIDO2-compliant security keys in Safari
- Fixes issues in Mail that may prevent downloading new messages
- Addresses an issue that prevented deleting messages in Gmail accounts
- Resolves issues that could cause incorrect characters to display in messages and duplication of sent messages in Exchange accounts
- Fixes an issue where the cursor may not move after long pressing on the space bar
- Addresses an issue that may cause screenshots to appear blurry when sent via Messages
- Resolves an issue where cropping or using Markup on screenshots may not save to Photos
- Fixes an issue where Voice Memos recordings may not be able to be shared with other audio apps
- Addresses an issue where the missed call badge on the Phone app may not clear
- Resolves an issue where the Cellular Data setting may incorrectly show as off
- Fixes an issue that prevented turning off Dark Mode when Smart Invert was enabled
- Addresses an issue where some wireless chargers may charge more slowly than expected
For information on the security content of Apple software updates, please visit this website:
Meanwhile, tvOS 13.3 adds a new setting to revert one of the more annoying changes made to the Apple TV with tvOS 13.
Apple redesigned the Apple TV home screen with tvOS 13 to allow for fullscreen panoramic previews in the Top Shelf area. At the same time, it also changed the content of the Top Shelf for the TV app. The area originally showed your personalized “Up Next” queue, but that was changed to a “What to Watch” selection of video trailers and previews this year.
A new setting in tvOS 13.3, however, lets you bring back the “Up Next” queue to your Apple TV Home screen. To change the setting, update to tvOS 13.3 Then, go into the Settings app. Select Apps, then select the TV app.
The new setting is under the “Home Screen” section. You can switch between showing “What to Watch” or “Up Next” in the Top Shelf. Click the remote to switch between the options.
Lastly, Apple is also releasing watchOS 6.1.1 to the public. This update does not include any new features for users, but it does offer performance improvements and bug fixes.
HomePod OS 13.3
Apple has also released a software update for HomePod. Here are the release notes:
- Improves the ability of HomePod to recognize the voice profile of family members
- Allows individual family members to enable/disable personal requests
- Fixes an issue that could prevent music playback from resuming on a stereo pair after a phone call