Apple Seeds First Beta of iOS 11.3 to Developers With New Animoji, Business Chat, Health Records, iCloud Messages and More

Apple today seeded the first beta of an upcoming iOS 11.3 update to developers, one week after releasing iOS 11.2.5, an update that focused primarily on bug fixes and security improvements.

Registered developers can download the iOS 11.3 beta from Apple's Developer Center or over-the-air once the proper configuration profile has been installed from the Developer Center.

ios113beta
Apple this morning shared a preview of iOS 11.3, outlining all of the new features we can expect to see in the update.

iOS 11.3 will bring four new Animoji characters to the iPhone X, like a lion, bear, dragon, and skull, giving iPhone X users new characters to play with, and it reintroduces iCloud Messages, a feature that was removed from the initial iOS 11 release.

new animoji 11
The software update includes improved ARKit tools for developers. ARKit 1.5 can recognize and place virtual objects on vertical surfaces and it can more accurately map irregularly shaped surfaces like circular tables. ARKit is able to recognize the position of 2D images like signs, posters, and artwork, integrating them into AR experiences. Museums, for example, can be filled with interactive exhibits or a movie poster can be brought to life. The real-world view through the camera when using AR also offers 50 percent greater resolution (1080p) in ARKit 1.5 and supports auto-focus.

Apple AR Experience 01232018
Business Chat, a feature that first debuted in iOS 11, is officially launching in beta capacity this spring with support from businesses like Discover, Hilton, Lowe's, and Wells Fargo. You'll be able to have customer support chats with these companies right within the Messages app.

business chat
In the Health app, Apple is adding a new Health Records feature to make it easier for customers with a participating medical institution to access their records right on their iPhone, even when those medical records are spread across multiple providers.

health records ios 11
Supported providers include Johns Hopkins Medicine, Cedars-Sinai, Penn Medicine, Geisinger Health System, UC San Diego Health - San Diego, California, UNC Health Care , Rush University Medical Center, Dignity Health, Ochsner Health System, MedStar Health, Ohio Health, and Cerner Healthe Clinic.

A later beta of iOS 11.3 will feature new, more detailed information about the health of a device's battery. The change comes following controversy over power management features implemented in older devices to prevent unexpected shutdowns. Those power management features throttle iPhones with degraded batteries at times of peak power usage to maintain stable performance.

The update should provide a lot more data about battery health, and there will also be an option to let customers turn off the power management feature entirely, though Apple does not recommend disabling it. The new features can be found in Settings --> Battery and are available for iPhone 6 and later.

Other new features included in iOS 11.3 include support for streaming unlimited music videos in Apple Music without ads, a new "For You" video of the day in Apple News along with improved Top Stories, HomeKit software authentication to make it easier for accessory makers to add HomeKit support into existing devices, support for Advanced Mobile Location (AML) to automatically send a user's current location when making a call to emergency services in supported countries, a new name for "iBooks," which is now just "Books," and an update to the App Store updates page, which now shows the version number and download size of all updates.

Today's beta is limited to developers, but Apple says a public beta will be released for public beta testers soon.

Related Forum: iOS 11

Top Rated Comments

obitow Avatar
61 months ago
Messages in iCloud

Attachment Image
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
sniffies Avatar
61 months ago
Waiting for Messages in iCloud is like waiting for Copy Paste for two years (even though never promised)

Ah, the memories...
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
C DM Avatar
61 months ago
Any word on the possible dark mode that was rumored for 11.3?
Doesn't really seem like anything like that was rumored.

Maybe Apple can come out with "iOS Professional" version where is leaves out all this emoji, Animoji, iMessage stickers apps, etc.
I believe that's just called not using those things.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
McFreggle Avatar
61 months ago
The .3 releases are lately the bigger, better ones.

Although they should stop this silly game where there needs to be a major new version every year. Quality seems to suffer from it. Just give us 11.4 in May, and announce 11.5 on WWDC in June. iPhone 11 can ship with iOS 11.6 or whatever they want to call it.

Same goes for macOS.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
DNichter Avatar
61 months ago
Messages in iCloud has been reserved for iOS 20 as a groundbreaking revolutionary magical feature
It's in this beta
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
chucker23n1 Avatar
61 months ago
Eh same reason Force Touch only came to 6S (because “hardware” limited it from the 6). Sure it probably could be used on other devices (like the app you mentioned) but Apple has always had a habit of limiting features to the newest devices because: business and marketing.
Errrrr. How would you implement 3D Touch without hardware support?

And while you can achieve some level of face tracking with a camera, which every iPhone since the 4 has had, the X adds infra-red and can thus make a 3D model of your face, making the tracking far more accurate. Hence Animoji working far better.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

apple watch ultra deuglify 1

Apple Watch Ultra User Mods Titanium Casing to 'Deuglify' Design

Tuesday September 27, 2022 8:05 am PDT by
An Apple Watch Ultra user has modified their new device's casing to add a brushed finish and remove the orange color of the Action Button in an effort to make it more visually appealing. The Apple Watch Ultra offers the first complete redesign of the Apple Watch since the product line's announcement in 2014, and while the design has been met with praise from many users, some have criticized...
Dark Sky App Featured

Dark Sky Removed From iOS App Store Ahead of Upcoming Shutdown

Wednesday September 28, 2022 4:27 pm PDT by
The Dark Sky weather app that's owned by Apple is no longer available for download in the U.S. App Store, suggesting that it has been removed ahead of schedule. Apple acquired Dark Sky back in March 2020 and has since incorporated elements of the app into the Weather app available on the iPhone (and soon, the iPad). Dark Sky remained available for purchase as a standalone weather app...
iphone 14 pro max vs 13 max 2

Camera Comparison: iPhone 14 Pro Max vs. iPhone 13 Pro Max

Thursday September 29, 2022 7:44 am PDT by
The iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max introduce some major improvements in camera technology, adding a 48-megapixel lens and low-light improvements across all lenses with the new Photonic Engine. We've spent the last week working on an in-depth comparison that pits the new iPhone 14 Pro Max against the prior-generation iPhone 13 Pro Max to see just how much better the iPhone 14 Pro Max can be. Subscrib ...
apple watch ultra hammer test

YouTuber Tests Apple Watch Ultra Durability With a Hammer: Table Breaks Before the Watch

Sunday September 25, 2022 2:27 pm PDT by
A YouTuber has put Apple's claims for the durability of the Apple Watch Ultra to the test by putting it up against a drop test, a jar of nails, and repeated hits with a hammer to test the sapphire crystal protecting the display. TechRax, a channel popular for testing the durability of products, first tested the Apple Watch Ultra by dropping it from around four feet high. The Apple Watch...
tony blevins car

Apple Procurement VP Departs Company After Vulgar TikTok Comment

Thursday September 29, 2022 12:38 pm PDT by
Tony Blevins, Apple's vice president of procurement, is set to depart the company after he made a crude comment about his profession in a recent TikTok video, reports Bloomberg. Blevins was in a video by TikTok creator Daniel Mac, who was doing a series on the jobs of people he spotted with expensive cars. After seeing Blevins in an expensive Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren, Mac asked Blevins what ...
iPhone 14 Pros in Hand Black Background Feature

Verizon iPhone 14 Pro Customers Reporting Cellular Connection Issues

Monday September 26, 2022 6:23 am PDT by
iPhone 14 Pro customers on the Verizon network in the U.S. are reporting issues with slow and unreliable 5G cellular connections and calls randomly dropping. Several threads on Reddit (1,2,3) and the MacRumors forums chronicle issues faced by Verizon customers and Apple's latest iPhone. According to user reports, signal strength on the iPhone 14 Pro is unreliable and weak, while other...
iPhone 15 to Switch From Lightning to USB C in 2023 feature sans arrow

Kuo: iPhone 14 Pro Max Popularity Could Lead to More Differentiation Between iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max

Wednesday September 28, 2022 10:22 am PDT by
Apple has seen high demand for the 6.7-inch iPhone 14 Pro Max, which could lead the company to further differentiate the next-generation iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max, according to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. Apple could add exclusive features to the iPhone 15 Pro Max in an effort to encourage more people to purchase the larger and more expensive device. Kuo last week said that Apple asked...
iPhone 14 Pro Sports Scores Dynamic Island

iPhone 14 Pro Features Live Sports Scores in Dynamic Island on iOS 16.1

Monday September 26, 2022 7:52 am PDT by
Earlier this month, Apple announced that iOS 16.1 will enable a new Live Activities feature that allows iPhone users to stay on top of things that are happening in real time, such as a sports game or a food delivery order, right from the Lock Screen. On the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max, Live Activities also integrate with the Dynamic Island. Premier League match in Dynamic Island via Paul Bradford ...
iOS 16

Everything New in the Latest iOS 16.1 and iPadOS 16.1 Betas: Stage Manager Expansion, Wallpaper Tweaks and More

Tuesday September 27, 2022 11:36 am PDT by
Apple today released new betas of iOS 16.1 and iPadOS 16.1 to developers, tweaking some of the functionality that's been introduced in prior betas and in the case of iPadOS 16.1, adding a major new feature to Stage Manager. We've rounded up everything new in both betas below. Wallpaper Updates Apple has updated the Wallpaper section of the Settings app to allow users to swap between...
General iOS 16 Feature Yellow

Some iOS 16 Users Continue to Face Unaddressed Bugs and Battery Drain Two Weeks After Launch

Monday September 26, 2022 7:34 am PDT by
Today marks exactly two weeks since Apple released iOS 16 to the public. Besides the personalized Lock Screen, major changes in Messages, and new features in Maps, the update has also seen its fair share of bugs, performance problems, battery drain, and more. After major iOS updates, it's normal for some users to report having issues with the new update, but such reports usually subside in...