Apple initiated the release of new iPhones in 2023, but there’s another iPhone update accessible for all iPhones from the iPhone XR up: iOS 17. The iOS 17 update went live for hundreds of millions of iPhones on Monday, September 18, 2023.
Additional features in iOS 17 involve interaction posters, NameDrop, StandBy, Live Voicemail, FaceTime video voicemail, an entirely new Siri voice recognition model, substantial enhancements to autocorrect and dictation, and much more.
It’s nearly like possessing a new iPhone without shelling out any money. In this article, we explore everything you require to comprehend about iOS 17, comprising all the features and any problems that come up, as well as checking on the latest version and what to expect in the next update.
Update: On January 25 Apple produced a press release outlining adjustments coming to iPhones and iPads in the EU that should enable apps to be downloaded and payments processed outside the App Store. This should promote apps like Xbox Game Pass and GeForce Now to the iPhone. There will also be a new collection of emoji arriving in iOS 17.4. More below.
iOS 17: What’s the latest version?
The first iOS 17 release was on September 18, but shortly afterward on September 21 Apple introduced iOS 17.0.1 with three zero-day security patches that “may have been actively exploited”. More information here: Apple pushes out critical iOS 17.0.1 update just days after iOS 17 release.
That same day, there was an iOS 17.0.2 update for iPhone 15 models that fixed a bug for new iPhone buyers. Some users who purchased new iPhone 15 models found that they were unable to transfer data from an old iPhone during the new iPhone setup process. This same repair was then issued for other iPhones on September 27. All new iPhones should be updated to iOS 17.0.2 before attempting a data transfer from an old iPhone.
iOS 17.0.3 arrived on October 4 with a remedy for a problem that was causing iPhones to overheat–particularly the iPhone 15 Pro. There are also two security fixes, more here: iOS 17.0.3 is out with iPhone 15 Pro overheating fix and security updates.
Following that, iOS 17.1 arrived on October 25. Fresh features comprise improvements to AirDrop (file transfers continue over the internet when you are out of range), new StandBy options, Favorites in Music and numerous bug and security fixes.
Next in line was iOS 17.1.1, which was a minor update fixing a couple of bugs. One bug pertaining to Apple Pay and other NFC capabilities becoming unavailable on iPhone 15 models after wireless charging in BMW cars, the other bug related to the Weather Lock Screen widget which might not correctly display snow.
Then iOS 17.1.2 on November 30 fixed a couple of WebKit security vulnerabilities that have been exploited in the wild. WebKit being the browser engine used by Safari.
iOS 17.2 arrived on December 11 and featured the Journal app, new Weather and Clock widgets, and Stickers for Message reactions.
The present version of iOS 17 is iOS 17.3, introduced on January 22. The update includes a new Stolen Device Protection feature that should make it harder for thieves to access your digital life using a stolen passcode. iOS 17.3 also includes a crucial security patch for a zero-day vulnerability that may have been exploited.
There will be numerous updates over the forthcoming months, both minor point releases for bug fixes and security updates and major releases that append new features. Here’s a look at just a few of the iOS 17 features coming in later updates.
iOS 16 and iOS 15 are still getting security updates.
iOS 17 beta: What’s the latest iOS beta?
Apple has run a beta program since it revealed the details of iOS 17 at WWDC. Despite the full version of iOS 17 being available to the public, the beta testing continues.
Apple has started development of iOS 17.4, with the first beta of iOS 17.4 being issued on January 25.
If you’d like to receive iOS 17 beta updates read How to get the iOS 17 beta on your iPhone. We also describe how to revert from iOS 17 beta to a non-beta version of iOS for those testers who wish to use the non-beta version of iOS 17.
iOS 17.4 Release date and new features
Apple started work on iOS 17.3 on December 12, issuing the final version six weeks later on January 22. The six-week turnaround seems typical: iOS 17.2 was first released to developers on October 26 and then became available for download on iPhones on December 11. It can be quicker though: iOS 17.1 was first released to developers on September 27 and was made available for download just four weeks later on October 25, which was a fast turnaround, perhaps because of pressure from France to address an issue with iPhone 12 radiation levels.
Assuming a six-week turnaround, we could see iOS 17.4 on iPhones around March 6. This looks like a probable date for release as it’s also the deadline to comply with the Digital Markets Act in the EU and that does seem to be what this release is predominantly about.
Here are the new features coming to iOS 17.4 (some will, we assume, be EU only):
- Open door: In the EU, there will be 600 new APIs to enable developers to offer their iOS apps for download from alternative app marketplaces. There will also be expanded app analytics, functionality for alternative browser engines, access to NFC for mobile payment systems, and options for processing app payments and distributing iOS apps outside the App Store.
- Commissions: EU commissions will be reduced to 10 percent for the first year for most developers (and for subscriptions past the first year) and 17 percent for all digital transactions. That’s a cut nearly in half compared to rates in the rest of the world.
- Security: Because Apple believes that allowing apps to be installed from outside the App Store is risky to the user, new app safety features will be introduced that are designed to mitigate the risks. These include notarization for iOS and app installation sheets. Marketplace developers will also require authorization. There will also be increased malware protections.
- New emoji: This one is for everyone, not just those in the EU. A number of new emojis are coming in iOS 17.4. These emoji are part of the Emoji version 15.1 and include: Broken Chain, Brown Mushroom, Head Shaking Horizontally, Head Shaking Vertically, Lime, Phoenix, as well as four new non-gender-specifying family emoji and six different alternative-direction emoji that offer a total of 108 combinations.
- SharePlay: Family and friends with an iPhone will be able to control the music on your HomePod or Apple TV, with permission.
- Apple Music “Home” tab: The tab formerly labeled “Listen Now” will become “Home.”
- Stolen Device Protection: Users can now choose to always require a delay when changing security settings, not just when away from familiar locations.