No more keying in passcodes to unlock your iPhone, iOS 14.5 is here at last

The iOS 14.5 update also includes the long awaited App Tracking Transparency feature.

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Unlocking your iPhone with a mask on is a pain, but not problem now if you have an Apple Watch. Image: Apple

If you have at least an Apple Watch Series 3, then good news, you can now unlock your iPhone (X or later) without Face ID - because iOS 14.5 is now here with some new features big and small.

The biggest change lets you unlock your phone with an Apple Watch simply by glancing at your iPhone and the watch will vibrate as a confirmation. All you need is to keep the watch on your wrist and near the phone. However, you still need Face ID for making payments.

Siri

Siri no longer has a default voice and we now get to choose from four voice options. You can now start calls to multiple contacts or contacts in a group chat within the Messages app. If you own a pair of AirPods or Beats headphones, Siri will announce incoming calls and lets you call emergency contacts.

App tracking

Now you know definitively if an app is tracking you across websites and you get to decide if they get to. Image: Apple
Now you know definitively if an app is tracking you across websites and you get to decide if they get to. Image: Apple

Perhaps the most important update, apps now need your permission before they can track your data across apps or websites owned by other companies, be it for advertising or data sharing. You can freely change the permissions at any time.

Emojis

More expressions and diversity options is the norm now. Image: Apple
More expressions and diversity options is the norm now. Image: Apple

No update will be complete with the requisite inclusion of emojis, here are a couple more, including new skin tones for the couple kissing emoji and couple with heart emoji. New emojis include face exhaling, face with spiral eyes, face in clouds, hearts on fire, mending heart, and woman with a beard, just to name a few.

Additional Features

Apple gives the Podcasts app a makeover too. Image: Apple
Apple gives the Podcasts app a makeover too. Image: Apple

  • Apple Podcasts revamps show pages for ease of use, which includes new categories on the search tab. The option to save and download episodes also adds them to the Library for easy access.
  • AirTag support for the new AirTags to track your items via the Find My app.
  • Reminders adds sorting abilities as well as the option to print lists.
  • 5G improvements for iPhone 12 models include Dual SIM support for 5G connectivity and Smart Data Mode enhancements. This improves battery life and data usage as well.