iOS 14 is out now: Here’s everything you need to know

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Apple’s long awaited iOS 14 update is now available, and brings with it a mighty download size and tonnes of new features that’ll give your phone a fresh, new feeling. New features available with iOS 14 include a new translation app, new layout customisation tools, and App Clips, along with some major UI overhauls when it comes to taking calls and using Siri. There’s a lot to go over, so let’s dive right into it.

iOS 14: All the big changes out now

iOS 14 is huge – so huge that the beta for the update took up about 2.66GB (so make sure you free up some space on your phone!). The biggest changes iOS 14 brings revolve around the way the operating system looks and how you interact with the phone, although there are some new things, like the Translate app and App Clips. iOS 14 also brings a range of new privacy updates, and now notifies you when apps do certain things like find devices on your network, or use your camera or microphone. Let’s jump into all of the big changes.

New features: Translate, App Clips and Guides

There’s some new features on the way for Apple fans – in fact there’s three big ones. “Translate” is an entirely new app coming for iPhones, allowing you to translate the language you’re speaking on the fly and powered by Siri. The app works offline, with 11 languages supported. This is a great feature if you love to travel, or if you find yourself needing to speak to people in other languages often.

A phone translating a language

App Clips is another new feature coming in iOS 14. App Clips are low-performing mini-apps that are designed to pop up when you need them, such as if you need to rent a bike and don’t have the app installed, or if you’re shopping on Safari when you could be using a retailer’s app. Right now, it’s hard to say how the feature will be integrated into the lives of Aussie iPhone users, but regardless it’s a welcome new addition to iOS.

Three iPhone 11's

Guides is also a new feature coming for Apple Maps. You will now be able to see user-created reviews of businesses through Apple Maps, with reviews curated by Apple. Maps is also being changed to include better options for cyclists, and includes road elevation, stairs, steep passages and busy streets with its calculations, along with electric vehicle charging locations. This is another welcome feature if you’re a traveller. All in all, these new features are terrific if you’re a world explorer!

Three phones using Apple Guides

Privacy updates: Keeping your mobile use safe and secure

iOS 14 brings a whole heap of privacy updates with it – some which you might find annoying at first, but ultimately being coupled to more choice for the user. You’ll now be notified whenever an app is using your camera or microphone, with a little dot in the top bar of your phone (green is camera, orange is microphone), and a small notification when you open the swipe down control centre menu. This applies even for Apple apps like the calling app.

The update also allows you to limit app access to locations and your saved photos. In terms of locations, you can set the app to track your location “Never”, “While using the app” or “Ask next time” in case you have a changing preference. A slider in the settings for apps also determines “precise location”, in case you don’t want an app to know your exact coordinates. The App Store will now also give you a bigger picture of what privacy concerns you should know about before downloading apps, and what elements the app in question accesses.

An iphoneAs far as saved photos go, you can set apps to only have limited access to certain photos, have full access to your saved photos, or have no access to your saved photos. You can also limit how an app tracks you when the app is not turned on – giving it some ability or no ability at all. A notification also comes up in the top of the phone whenever an app uses information from your Clipboard (when you paste content).

Wi-Fi tracking is also a big focus of iOS 14, and your phone will now notify you when an app is looking for other devices on your local network (which you can allow or deny). When you connect to a network through settings now, you’ll have the option of enabling a “Private Address” slider, which will give your phone a different MAC address every time it connects to a Wi-Fi connection, giving you another line of defence against online tracking.

The Safari internet browsing app also has gotten some privacy updates. The browser will now warn you when you’re entering a password into a website that isn’t secure. Safari will also generate privacy reports on websites (tap the AA button to read these reports), and you can now enable or disable cross-site tracking.

The UI overhaul: Looking more Android every day

The influence that Android’s highly customisable operating system has had on Apple’s own iOS is obvious, and it really shows on the home screen. You can now play around with widgets a whole lot more, and mix them up with your apps on your phone screen. This way you can see your upcoming reminders or the big news stories without swiping all the way left to the widgets page, or booting individual apps.

Two iPhone 11's left and right

On top of this, there’s also a new “App Library” screen where you can see and sort all of your phone’s apps in an automatically catalogued view (you can access this if you swipe all the way to the right). Messages have been overhauled too, allowing you to pin your most important contacts, with the Messages screen having a small makeover.

An iPhone using iOS 14

Another huge UI overhaul comes in the form of changing the way you receive calls and use Siri. iPhone users are familiar with both of these things taking up the whole screen, and blurring out whatever you’re doing with the phone to focus all your attention on either the call or the personal assistant. Now both are more compact and you can use them while reading a page or swiping through a social media app. All in all, you’ll find your phone has a more bubbly aesthetic to it.

Two iPhone 11's

Got an iPhone? Consider getting a new phone plan

If you’re excited for iOS 14, there’s a good chance that you’ve got an iPhone already – but to really get the most out of your phone, you’ll need a phone plan to match. Phone plan offerings are always changing, mixing up features, value, bonuses and data amounts, all to offer the best value. If you’re looking for a new plan, we’ve got you covered – the table below shows off some terrific prepaid and postpaid phone plans from across the market.

Here is a selection of postpaid plans from Canstar Blue’s database with a minimum of 10GB of data, listed in order of standard cost, lowest to highest, then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see a wide range of plans from other providers. This table includes products with links to referral partners.

Here is a selection of prepaid plans from Canstar Blue’s database with a minimum of 10GB of data, listed in order of standard cost, lowest to highest, then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see a wide range of plans from other providers. This table includes products with links to referral partners.

Other big changes coming in iOS 14

iOS 14 has some other huge features coming for Apple’s range of apps. Here’s everything you need to know:

  • You can now start your smart car from your iPhone, provided you’re using the new ‘Car Keys’ feature, which you can find in the Apple Wallet. You can send a ‘Car Key’ to anyone through messages, and start the car whenever the key is near. You can also order food, and find parking and electric vehicle charging stations through Car Play, and changing the background of the device is now also enabled.
  • The Home App will now include automatic preferences when installing new technology, allow for light colour changes depending on what time of day it is, and connected video cameras can now unlock when detecting people in your contacts. You can also set ‘activity zones’ in camera view, in case anyone comes in range.
  • Safari now boasts 2x faster JavaScript performance than the Chrome Mobile Browser or Android Browser, according to Apple. A beta-feature for translation is being rolled out, able to translate up to seven different languages in Safari.
  • AirPods now have a ‘Spatial audio’ feature, which tracks your head movements, providing sound accordingly. The UI for low AirPod batteries is getting refreshed too, and you can now seamlessly switch your AirPods between you iPhone or iPad, depending on what you’re using at the time – like switching from a video to a phone call. Multiple AirPods can now be added to your Apple TV.
  • 20 new hair and head-wear styles are coming to the Memoji feature.

Can I get iOS 14?

Apple is being quite generous with what devices can get iOS 14, with phones dating back to the 6S being applicable. The following devices will be able to get the free update as of September 17:

If you’re not currently an Apple user, but you’re excited to get on board with an iPhone, we’ve got some great prices and deals for you below. The iPhone 12 is just around the corner, so it’s a great time to snatch up a deal.

The following table shows the cheapest 24-month 64GB iPhone 11 plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

The following table shows the cheapest 24-month 64GB iPhone 11 Pro plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

The following table shows the cheapest 24-month 64GB iPhone 11 Pro Max plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

Images: Apple

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