Apple releases iOS 12.1

Alex Kidman 31 October 2018 NEWS

Group Facetime, new emoji and Dual SIM lands on iOS devices – but don't get too excited about Dual SIM iPhones down under just yet.

Apple has formally announced that iOS 12.1 is available from today qualifying iOS devices, with a slew of new features, along with a range of bug fixes and security updates.

Point level OS upgrades rarely include a lot of actual "new" features, but iOS 12.1 does have a few new tricks to offer up. If you're a Facetime devotee, you'll now be able to engage in group Facetime chats, presuming your network connection is up to all that video action.

iOS 12.1 will also add a range of more than 70 new emoji to the iOS platform, including new sports, cultural and animal icons. For Aussies, this will include a dedicated kangaroo icon.

On the camera front, if you're rocking one of Apple's fancy new iPhone XS or iPhone XS Max handsets, you'll be able to adjust your depth of field prior to capture, while still being able to adjust it post-shooting to further enhance your photographs.

Apple also enabled the "dual SIM" feature of the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR, but there's a catch there for Aussie buyers.

The secondary SIM card slot in those iPhone models is a virtual "eSIM", and none of Australia's carriers support eSIM outside of the Apple Watch Series 3 and Apple Watch Series 4. Aussie carriers aren't fond of dual SIM phones at any level, which is why the dual SIM models of many Android phones supplied by carriers are instead single SIM variants. If anyone can force the telco's hands on this it's probably Apple, but we wouldn't advise holding your breath waiting for that.

iOS 12.1 is due for release today, but with the US time zone in mind, it may be some hours before it appears on your qualifying iOS device – which is basically any iOS device already capable of running iOS 12.

Apple iPhone XR

Apple's more affordable flagship

The iPhone XR provides Apple's latest processor and operating system in a package that's more affordably priced than the iPhone XS Max.

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