Apple releases iOS 16.1 with support for iCloud Shared Photo Library, Matter, Live Activities and more

Apple today released iOS 16.1, the first major update to the iOS 16 operating system. iOS 16.1 comes more than a month after the launch of ‌iOS 16‌, released in September.

Apple’s ‌iOS 16‌ update can be downloaded to eligible iPhones over-the-air by going to Settings > General > Software Update. Propagating updates to all users may take a few minutes due to high demand.

With this update, Apple adds several features that were not included in the launch version of ‌iOS 16‌. iCloud Shared Photo Library is supported for managing a photo library with your friends and family, and it adds Live Activities to the Lock screen and Dynamic Island on iPhone 14 Pro models.

Apple Fitness+ can now be used on iPhone without Apple Watch, and the update adds support for Matter, among other features. Apple’s full release notes are below.

This update introduces iCloud Shared Photo Library, making it easier to update your family photos. This release also adds support for third-party apps in Live Activities, support for Apple Fitness+ on iPhone even if you don’t have an Apple Watch, and includes other features and bug fixes for your iPhone.

iCloud Shared Photo Library
– Separate library to seamlessly share photos and videos with up to five other people
– Setup rules allow you to easily contribute past photos based on start date or people in photos when you set up or join a library
– Library filters to quickly switch between viewing the shared library, your personal library, or both libraries together
– Shared edits and permissions allow anyone to add, edit, favourite, caption and delete photos
– The in-camera sharing toggle lets you choose to send photos you take directly to the shared library or enable a setting to automatically share when other participants are detected nearby via Bluetooth

Live Activities
– Third-party app live activities are available in dynamic island and lock screen for iPhone 14 Pro models

Fitness+
– Apple Fitness+ is supported on iPhone even if you don’t have an Apple Watch

Wallet
– Key sharing allows you to securely share car, hotel room and other keys in Wallet using messaging apps like Messages and WhatsApp

House
– Matter, the new smart home connectivity standard, is supported, allowing a wide variety of smart home accessories to work together across ecosystems

Clean energy charge
– New setting that can try to reduce your carbon footprint by selectively charging when low carbon electricity is available

Books
– Player controls are automatically hidden when you start reading

This update also includes bug fixes for your iPhone:
– Deleted conversations can appear in the list of conversations in Messages
– Dynamic Island content is not available when using accessibility
– CarPlay may not connect when using a VPN app

‌iOS 16‌ fixes a long list of vulnerabilities, including a kernel issue that Apple says could have been actively exploited. More information is available in Apple’s security support document.

iOS 16.1 is accompanied by iPadOS 16.1, the first launch of iPadOS 16 software. Apple delayed iPadOS 16.1 because it wanted to do additional work on Stage Manager, a new multitasking feature. More information on all the features introduced with the ‌iOS 16‌ update can be found in our roundup.

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