Apple's released the beta for the upcoming iOS version 13.5 and it's set to include a number of coronavirus-related updates as well as the foundations for its upcoming API updates that will see the coronavirus tracing apps to function well on devices.
The beta of version 13.5, which is now available, contains three major updates, according to 9to5Mac, as well as the groundwork for Apple and Google's upcoming Exposure Notification API.
The first of those new changes will be for Face ID, which has become a source of frustration for many wearing face masks amid the coronavirus. The beta, according to 9to5Mac, addresses these concerns by allowing users to skip the feature easier using a passcode instead. It does this by detecting a user is wearing the mask and prompting them to input their passcode instead.
The second coronavirus feature is related to Apple's Group FaceTime. Like other video conferencing services, Group FaceTime gradually enlarges the person who's speaking but when multiple people talk simultaneously, as often happens in bigger calls, users' video streams are constantly increasing and decreasingly, which can be dizzying to look at. The 13.5 beta gives users the option to disable that movement so you can manually choose whose face you want to look at.
Finally, the beta version also includes the API for Google and Apple's upcoming contact tracing infrastructure. It essentially lays down the framework so both iOS and Android devices will allow for contact tracing to occur in the background while ensuring no location information leaks into it.
A number of governments around the world, including Australian, have opted not to use the upcoming infrastructure but the Australian government has recently admitted it would likely use it to fix some key issues with Bluetooth not functioning properly on iOS devices.
The beta of version 13.5 is now available for anyone who wants to give it a go — just remember betas are called that for a reason and aren't always stable. If you're ready, you can sign up for the beta program here. [Via 9to5Mac]
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