Apple launches iOS 16.2 with new FreeForm app, Apple Sing and Always-On Display without wallpaper

Apple has kept its promise and released the new iOS 16.2 which adds some of the features long awaited by users. Some of these capabilities were first announced back in the summer at WWDC, where iOS 16, iPadOS 16 and macOS Ventura were unveiled, and others were announced just a few days ago. This is the biggest iOS 16 update to date and also fixes many issues and vulnerabilities reported lately.

New iOS 16.2 release adds many new capabilities

One of the most important additions in iOS 16.2, coming to the iPad as well as the Mac, is the Freeform app, a new “whiteboard” app where multiple users, regardless of platform, can collaborate to work on projects. The app allows both drawing and handwriting with an Apple Pencil, as well as inputting text, videos, photos and other content.

Then, Apple introduces the Apple Sing karaoke feature, which can use AI to remove the voice from songs in the Apple Music catalog and display in real time lyrics that can be highlighted by syllable.

The lock screen also gets improvements, after being criticized at launch. So users will be able to hide the background of the screen and leave only important information displayed. The update also limits AirDrop to 10 minutes after activation to avoid privacy issues. This feature debuted a few months ago in China.

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iOS 16.2 is compatible with all iPhone models from iPhone 8 onwards. Along with the new iOS, iPadOS 16.2, WatchOS 9.2, tvOS 16.2 and macOS 13.1 have also been released, adding similar features.

Here’s the full list of changes in iOS 16.2

This update includes the premiere of Freeform, an app that provides a great environment for brainstorming and bringing ideas to life. In addition, the update brings Apple Music Sing, lock screen improvements, and other iPhone functionality and bug fixes.

Freeform

  • Freeform is a new app that helps you work creatively with friends or colleagues on Mac, iPad and iPhone
  • Flexible workspace lets you add files, images, sticky notes and more
  • Drawing tools let you sketch anywhere on your workspace using a finger

Apple Music Sing

  • A new way to sing along to your favorite songs from the millions available in Apple Music
  • Fully adjustable vocal volume options let you sing duets with the original artist, sing solos, or alternate performances
  • New way of displaying lyrics in sync with the beat of the music makes it easy to follow along during playback
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Lock screen

  • New settings allow you to hide the background or notifications when “Always On Screen” is enabled on iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max
  • The Sleep widget lets you view the latest data about your sleep.
  • The Medication Widget gives you the ability to view reminders and quickly access your medication schedule

Game Center

  • Game Center’s multiplayer game compatibility with SharePlay allows you to play multiplayer games with people you are FaceTime chatting with
  • Activity Widget lets you see what your friends are playing and what they’re achieving in games, right from your home screen

Housing

  • Increased reliability and efficiency of communications between smart home accessories and Apple devices

This update also includes the following enhancements and bug fixes:

  • Improved search in the Messages app allows you to find photos based on their content, such as a dog, car, person, or text
  • IP address reload and display option allows iCloud private streaming users to temporarily disable the service for a specific site in Safari
  • The Notes app’s participant tracker displays real-time indicators that signal when other people make changes to a shared note
  • AirDrop configuration now automatically reverts to the “Contacts Only” option after 10 minutes to prevent unwanted requests to send you content
  • Optimizations to “Crash Detection” functionality on iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro models
  • Fixes an issue that could prevent some notes from syncing with iCloud after updates were made

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