Apple Reveals iOS 12 With Digital Health Features, Group FaceTime, Memoji, and More

As expected, Apple today revealed a multitude of features coming to iOS 12 that will improve the user's digital health and "help you limit distractions." These features will be built into iOS 12 and feed back into a new area of the Settings app called "Screen Time," found under Do Not Disturb.

Beginning with a new Do Not Disturb during Bedtime feature, you'll now be able to "get a better night's sleep" by dimming the iPhone display and hiding all notifications until prompted in the morning. When enacted, DnD during Bedtime enhances the time and date to act as more of a bedside alarm clock as well.

ios 12 screen time
In an effort to reduce interruptions, iOS 12 will give you more options for controlling how notifications are delivered as well. You can instantly manage notifications so they can be turned off completely or set them to be delivered directly to the Notification Center, bypassing the lock screen.

Over time, Siri will "intelligently make suggestions" to alter notifications based on your interactivity with these new granular controls and by judging how long it's been since you've opened or used an app. Notably, iOS 12 also introduces Grouped Notifications to iPhones and iPads, which Apple says will "make it easier to view and manage multiple notifications at once."

iOS 12 notifications
In the new Screen Time settings, you will find a detailed daily and weekly Activity Report that breaks down device usage across categories of apps, how many notifications you receive, how often you pick up your device, and more. With App Limits, you can set a specific amount of time to be in an app, and a notification will warn you when time's almost up.

Screen Time is built for both individual users and families, allowing parents to see their kid's Activity Reports right from their own iOS device. Other parental controls include features like Downtime, to set a block of time to limit a child's iOS device usage, and the ability to choose specific apps that can be used during Downtime, like Books or Phone.

"In iOS 12, we're offering our users detailed information and tools to help them better understand and control the time they spend with apps and websites, how often they pick up their iPhone or iPad during the day and how they receive notifications," said Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering. "We first introduced parental controls for iPhone in 2008, and our team has worked thoughtfully over the years to add features to help parents manage their children’s content. With Screen Time, these new tools are empowering users who want help managing their device time, and balancing the many things that are important to them."

Shifting from digital health features to a few augmented reality-focused updates, iOS 12 is updating Animoji with numerous overhauls this year. The big new addition is "Memoji" for iPhone X, where you can build your own personal Animoji character to look just like you and add in fun accessories like glasses and hats. Then, the Memoji can be used like normal Animoji in Messages, but also as a filter in FaceTime and video Messages.

Apple iOS 12 Memoji
The existing set of Animoji is also expanding with Ghost, Koala, Tiger, and T-Rex, and all Animoji and Memoji characters now feature winks and "tongue detection" so that they can capture even more of your facial expressions.

iOS 12 Memoji
iOS 12's augmented reality features will be powered by the new "ARKit 2," enabling shared experiences, persistent AR experiences tied to a specific location, object detection and image tracking, and more that will make AR apps "even more dynamic." Apple worked with Pixar to create a new open file format, USDZ, so that it's easy to experience AR "nearly anywhere in iOS," ranging from apps like Messages to Safari, Mail, Files, News, and more.

Then there's Group FaceTime, which will enable audio and video chats with multiple people (up to 32) at the same time. Apple explains that participants can be added at any time, join later if the chat is still active, and choose to join using video or just audio from an iPhone, iPad, Mac, or Apple Watch (for audio).

In other new app news, there's "Siri Shortcuts" which aims to help users build fully customizable workflows from third-party apps. In the app, you'll be able to customize Shortcuts by building a voice command that initiates the task, or use the UI of the app to simply tap your personal Shortcuts and begin the series of actions you have created.

ios 12 facetime siri photos
In Photos, Apple is making the app a bit more akin to Apple Music and Apple News with a "For You" tab that surfaces favorite moments in one place. A new sharing suggestions feature will make it easier to send photos and videos to friends, and iOS 12 will prompt friends who receive photos to share back any of their own that they took from the same trip or event. Otherwise, there's also improved search so you can combine multiple terms "to find just the right photos."

In general, Apple says that iOS 12 is "faster and more responsive" and has been designed to make everyday tasks much more streamlined. According to the company, the Camera launches up to 70 percent faster, the keyboard appears up to 50 percent faster and typing is more responsive, and apps launch up to twice as fast.

The company also promises that enhanced privacy and security "remain a top priority in iOS 12." For Safari, this means that Intelligent Tracking Prevention will block social media "Like" or "Share" buttons and comment widgets from tracking you without permission. The app will also automatically create, autofill, and store strong passwords when users create new online accounts and flags reused passwords to point out when you should be a bit more secure.

iOS 12 books news stocks
Below you'll find a list of a few other features coming to apps like Books, News, Wallet, and more in iOS 12:

- Apple Books is redesigned to make it easier to discover and enjoy books and audiobooks, and the Book Store tab makes it easy to explore new titles and browse the top charts, curated collections and special offers.
- Apple News is redesigned to make it easier to discover new channels and topics or jump straight to favorites, and on iPad, a new sidebar makes navigation even simpler.
- Stocks comes to iPad and illustrates how the market is moving with easy-to-understand quotes and high-quality news (pulled from Apple News).
- CarPlay adds support for third-party navigation apps displayed right on the car’s dash — joining music, messaging, calling and automaker apps.
- Voice Memos is now available on iPad and adds iCloud support to sync recordings and edits across devices. A new design makes it easier to capture, share and edit recordings.
- Siri translation expands to more than 40 language pairs and brings more knowledge of sports, celebrities, food and nutrition. Siri can also surface favorite photos by person, place, event, time and topic.
- Wallet on iPhone and Apple Watch adds support for student ID cards, making it more convenient to access everything on campus.

Apple says that iOS 12 will be available this fall as a free software update for the iPhone 5s and later, all iPad Air and iPad Pro models, iPad 5th generation and 6th generation, iPad mini 2 and later, and iPod touch 6th generation.

Related Forum: iOS 12

Top Rated Comments

lunarworks Avatar
44 months ago
Those parental controls are a killer feature for parents.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
edgonzalez32 Avatar
44 months ago
Omg. Grouped notifications finally. Jesus.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
erinsarah Avatar
44 months ago
Those parental controls are a killer feature for parents.
I actually think he undersold this. It's absolutely HUGE, and once you get outside of the Silicon Valley hipster single person creative bubble, it's probably the #1 thing on today's keynote that will appeal to the rest of the world. It's something that I've been complaining about for years and years, especially given how you can turn off wifi in the house but that doesn't mean the kid won't figure out how to use the cell signal. Too bad it comes when my older kid turns 18, so we're pretty much aged out of the need for it.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MacNut Avatar
44 months ago
Just give me the option to turn off notifications when I am on the phone watching YouTube or listening to Spotify. I don’t want alerts interrupting my music.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
that be me Avatar
44 months ago
FINALLY, grouped notifications!
It's kind of sad this is only now being introduced; and introduced as a feature to roaring applause, no less.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
JimmyHook Avatar
44 months ago
So they basically copied Android.
No, they developed a feature superior to Android’s woefully pathetic attempts at the same thing
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

studio buds family

Beats Studio Buds Debuting Today With Active Noise Cancellation, Stemless Design, and More for $150

Monday June 14, 2021 8:00 am PDT by
We've seen a lot of teasers about the Beats Studio Buds over the past month since they first showed up in Apple's beta software updates, and today they're finally official. The Beats Studio Buds are available to order today in red, white, and black ahead of a June 24 ship date, and they're priced at $149.99. The Studio Buds are the first Beats-branded earbuds to truly compete with AirPods...
airtag in hand

Apple Enhancing AirTags Anti-Stalking Measures With Android App and Shorter Sound Intervals

Thursday June 3, 2021 11:10 am PDT by
Apple is enhancing AirTags security to prevent stalking using the Bluetooth devices, Apple told CNET today. Apple is already sending out over-the-air updates to AirTags that will shorten the amount of time before an unknown AirTag alerts you if it is in your possession. At the current time, AirTags play a sound after three days of being away from their owner. After the update, AirTags will...
maxresdefault

Here's How Apple's New iPhone to iPhone Data Migration Feature Works in iOS 12.4

Tuesday July 23, 2019 1:20 pm PDT by
Apple this week released iOS 12.4, the newest version of iOS 12 available for iPhones and iPads. One of the new features in iOS 12.4 is an updated data migration option that uses device to device transfers rather than relying on iCloud. Apple didn't provide much information on the new data migration feature, so we thought we'd check it out in our latest YouTube video. Subscribe to the ...
youtube apple tv

YouTube Discontinuing 3rd-Generation Apple TV App, AirPlay Still Available

Wednesday February 3, 2021 3:09 pm PST by
YouTube is planning to stop supporting its YouTube app on the third-generation Apple TV models, where YouTube has long been available as a channel option. A 9to5Mac reader received a message about the upcoming app discontinuation, which is set to take place in March.Starting early March, the YouTube app will no longer be available on Apple TV (3rd generation). You can still watch YouTube on...
macos catalina legacy system extension alert

Apple Begins Warning Users That 'Legacy System Extensions' Won't Work With a Future Version of macOS

Wednesday March 25, 2020 9:53 am PDT by
Apple has shared a new support document that indicates kernel extensions — which it calls "legacy system extensions" — will not be compatible with a future version of macOS because they "aren't as secure or reliable as modern alternatives."System extensions are a category of software that works in the background to extend the functionality of your Mac. Some apps install kernel extensions, which...
os x mountain lion macs 16x9 2

Apple Makes OS X Lion and Mountain Lion Free to Download

Wednesday June 30, 2021 12:19 pm PDT by
Apple recently dropped the $19.99 fee for OS X Lion and Mountain Lion, making the older Mac updates free to download, reports Macworld. Apple has kept OS X 10.7 Lion and OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion available for customers who have machines limited to the older software, but until recently, Apple was charging $19.99 to get download codes for the updates. As of last week, these updates no...
airtag precision finding

AirTag Includes U1 Chip for 'Precision Finding' Feature

Tuesday April 20, 2021 12:11 pm PDT by
Apple's long-awaited AirTag was finally unveiled today, and as expected, the small circle-shaped accessories can be attached to items like wallets, keys, and more to allow them to be tracked in the Find My app. As was rumored ahead of release, each AirTag is equipped with a U1 chip, and on devices that also have U1 chips, there's a Precision Finding feature. U1 Ultra Wideband chips are...
iOS 15 General Feature Yellow

Everything New in iOS 15 Beta 6: SharePlay Disabled, Safari Redesigned and More

Tuesday August 17, 2021 2:12 pm PDT by
Apple released the sixth beta of iOS 15 just a week after the fifth beta, but the new update brings some of the most significant tweaks that we've seen to iOS 15 during the beta testing period. Safari Redesign Apple in iOS 15 beta 6 has added a toggle to move the Safari address bar to the top of the interface, which returns Safari to an iOS 14-like design and mitigates all of the Safari...
m1 macbook air

Kuo: Mini-LED MacBook Air Coming in Mid-2022

Thursday July 22, 2021 7:48 pm PDT by
Apple will release a new version of the MacBook Air around the middle of 2022, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said today in note to investors seen by MacRumors. The upcoming MacBook Air will feature a 13.3-inch mini-LED display, which would make it the second Mac to gain mini-LED technology after the 2021 MacBook Pro, which is rumored to include a mini-LED display and is expected to launch later ...
2016 macbook pro flexgate b

Apple Faces Another Class-Action MacBook Pro ‘Flexgate’ Lawsuit

Thursday August 20, 2020 6:43 am PDT by
Another class-action complaint has been lodged against Apple, which claims that the company was aware of a MacBook Pro design flaw that caused some devices to have backlight display issues (via Apple Insider). The so-called "flexgate" problem was present in some MacBook Pro models manufactured between 2016 and 2017. The problem appears as dark patches along the bottom of the MacBook Pro's...