iOS 16.2 Released for iPhone With These 12 New Features

iOS 16.2 is now available for the iPhone 8 and newer following two months of beta testing. With last-minute additions like Apple Music Sing and Advanced Data Protection, the software update includes over a dozen new features and changes for the iPhone.

General iOS 16 Feature Yellow
Below, we've recapped many of the new features available with iOS 16.2, including Apple's new whiteboard app Freeform, two new Lock Screen widgets, the ability to hide the wallpaper and notifications on the iPhone 14 Pro's always-on display, a new AirDrop setting, SharePlay support for Game Center, Live Activities enhancements, and more.

Apple Music Sing

apple music sing color bg 1
Apple Music Sing is a new karaoke-like feature on the lyrics screen in the Apple Music app that lets you sing along to tens of millions of songs. The feature allows users to lower the volume of the vocals in a song and then take over as the singer.

Apple Music Sing is compatible with devices equipped with an A13 chip or newer, including the iPhone 11 and newer, select iPads, and the latest Apple TV 4K.

Advanced Data Protection

Apple advanced security Advanced Data Protection screen Feature greenblue
iOS 16.2 introduces an optional Advanced Data Protection feature that, when enabled, expands end-to-end encryption to many additional iCloud data categories, including Messages backups, photos, notes, reminders, voice memos, and more.

Advanced Data Protection is currently limited to U.S. users and will start rolling out to the rest of the world in early 2023, according to Apple.

Freeform App

Freeform iPhone iPad Mac
iOS 16.2 includes Apple's new digital whiteboard app Freeform on the iPhone. The app provides an infinite canvas for you to draw on and insert sticky notes, text boxes, shapes, photos, videos, links, PDFs, and more. The app is also available on the iPad and the Mac, and you can collaborate with others in real time via FaceTime and iMessage.

Freeform is more useful on the iPad given the device supports the Apple Pencil, but you can still use a capacitive stylus on the iPhone.

Two New Lock Screen Widgets

iOS 16 2 Medications Widget
There are two new Lock Screen widgets for Sleep and Medications on iOS 16.2. With the Sleep widget, you can view your most recent sleep session and sleep stages, while the Medications widget can let you quickly access your medication schedule.

New Always-On Display Options

always on display options
Starting with iOS 16.2, you can hide the wallpaper and notifications in always-on display mode on the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max. This results in the Lock Screen having a solid black, minimal appearance in always-on mode, similar to Android.

The new "Show Wallpaper" and "Show Notifications" toggles are located in the Settings app under Display & Brightness → Always On Display.

Live Activities for Sports Scores via Apple TV App

nba live activities ios 16
iOS 16.2 adds Live Activities support for sports scores via the Apple TV app. The feature allows iPhone users to view live scores of MLB, NBA, and Premier League games at a glance on the Lock Screen, and in the Dynamic Island on iPhone 14 Pro models.

During a Premier League match, for example, the Dynamic Island shows a live-updating scoreboard with the number of goals scored by each club. When long pressed, the Dynamic Island expands to show the time elapsed and play-by-play action. When an iPhone 14 Pro is locked, and on all other iPhone models, the score is shown in a Lock Screen banner.

To use the feature with an iPhone running iOS 16.2, open the TV app and tap on the "Follow" button for a supported game. Apple says the feature is available for NBA and Premier League games for users in the U.S. and Canada, and for MLB games for users in the U.S., Canada, Australia, U.K., Brazil, Mexico, Japan, and South Korea.

New AirDrop Setting

AirDrop iOS 16 Feature
iOS 16.2 replaces AirDrop's previous "Everyone" setting with a limited "Everyone for 10 Minutes" option to cut down on unwanted requests from strangers. AirDrop now automatically reverts to "Contacts Only" after 10 minutes.

New Home App Architecture

homekit showdown
After updating to iOS 16.2 and opening the Home app, an update to the app is available with new underlying architecture. Apple says the new architecture improves the app's performance, efficiency, and reliability for controlling smart home accessories. This comes after the Home app gained support for Matter accessories in iOS 16.1.

Other New Features

  • SharePlay support in Game Center lets you play multiplayer games with the people you are on a FaceTime call with.
  • iOS 16.2 enables support for 5G networks in India on the iPhone 12 and newer, starting with carriers Airtel and Reliance Jio.
  • The built-in Weather app now features an Apple News section.
  • Improved search in the Messages app allows you to find photos based on their content, like a dog, car, person, or text.

There are a few other changes and optimizations in iOS 16.2, as outlined in the full release notes.

Related Forum: iOS 16

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Top Rated Comments

TheDailyApple Avatar
21 months ago

The built-in Weather app now features an Apple News section. ('https://www.macrumors.com/2022/11/03/weather-app-news-ios-16-2/')
Please, no!
Now that dark sky has been absorbed into Apple weather and is due to be discontinued, the last thing I want is for apple weather to become the weather channel.
Score: 28 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheYayAreaLiving ?️ Avatar
21 months ago
Wow! What a way to end 2022.
iOS 16.2 is packed with very nice features. Can't wait till next week.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
eyalben Avatar
21 months ago
And a fix for the Hebrew keyboard that put million of users in a months of hell!

(Some genius at apple replaced third of of the space key with a symbol key, but only sometimes, which causes tons of unrelated symbols being accidentally sent by hebrew iPhone users... iOS 16.2 allows disabling this button)



Attachment Image
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
tomtendo Avatar
21 months ago
Does this update bring back AirDrop to those in China protesting?
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheYayAreaLiving ?️ Avatar
21 months ago

This 10 minutes limitation is dumb. How about:

* Off
* Contact Only
* 10 Minutes Only
* Forever

It worked so well for suppression in China so they're gonna expand it globally.

What happens if my Bluetooth wireless connection* is slow and it takes longer than 10 minutes to AirDrop something to another device? Will it start all over :(
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Mousse Avatar
21 months ago
New features don't excite me. Bug fixes is what I care about.

How about another Leopard --> Snow Leopard type of update. Gimme the same, but sleaker, less buggy. Unleash Wozniak's Roughnecks on those bugs.

"Come on you apes, do you want to live forever?"
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)