iOS 14.3 Features: Everything New in iOS 14.3
Apple today released iOS 14.3 and iPadOS 14.3 to the public, introducing some notable new features. We've highlighted the biggest changes so you can get a quick overview of what to expect after installing it.
Priced at $9.99 per month and included in the highest-tier Apple One bundle, Apple Fitness+ is Apple's latest service that's designed to work with the Apple Watch. It offers guided workouts provided by Apple-hired trainers, with the Apple Watch used to track progress through the workout.
Video workouts are watched on Apple TV, iPad, or iPhone, with Apple Watch metrics provided right on the screen. Workout types include High Intensity Interval Training, Indoor Cycling, Yoga, Core, Strength, Dance, Rowing, Treadmill Walking, Treadmill Running, and Mindful Cooldown, with Apple offering workout suggestions and recommendations.
The update adds support for Apple's newest product, the AirPods Max over-ear headphones. Apple says the update enables high fidelity audio for rich sound, Adaptive EQ for adjusting sound in real time to the personal fit of the ear cushions, Active Noise Cancellation for blocking environmental noise, Transparency mode to hear the environment around you, and Spatial audio with dynamic head tracking for a theater-like experience.
iOS 14.3 brings the new ProRAW format to the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro Max. ProRAW is designed for those who prefer to shoot in RAW but also want to take advantage of the Apple image pipeline data like noise reduction and multiframe exposure adjustments.
ProRaw can be enabled in the Camera section of the Settings app for those who have installed the iOS 14.3 beta on a new iPhone 12 Pro or Pro Max. When activated, there's a RAW toggle in the upper right side of the camera app that can be tapped to turn it off or on.
ProRaw photos are approximately 25MB in size, so the feature may need to be used sparingly if iPhone storage space is an issue. ProRAW photos can be edited in the Photos app.
Other Camera Additions
There's now an option to record video at 25 frames per second, plus there's a new option to mirror the front-facing camera for still photos on iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone SE, iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X. This feature was already enabled on newer devices.
Siri in iOS 14 is able to replicate all manner of sounds, from animals to alarms, musical instruments, and more. You can ask Siri questions like "what does a humpback whale sound like?" or "what does a lion sound like?" to have Siri play the sound of a whale or a lion.
Apple added hundreds of different sounds, and on iPhone and iPad, Siri will also display a picture of the animal or device and then link to more information from Wikipedia after playing the sound.
Home Screen Shortcuts
iOS 14.3 makes it easier and quicker to launch apps with custom icons from the Home Screen. When opening an app that has a custom icon created using Shortcuts, it is no longer routed through the Shortcuts app and is instead able to open much more quickly. There's still a banner that pops up, but it's a more streamlined experience than before.
Ecosia Search Engine
Ecosia is a search engine that lets users fund the planting of trees when searches are conducted. iOS 14.3 allows Ecosia to be set as the default browser as an alternative to Google, Yahoo, Bing, and DuckDuckGo.
Apple is adding a new Apple TV+ tab that's designed to make it easier to discover Apple TV+ original content and to make it less confusing for customers who have trouble discerning what's available through an Apple TV+ subscription and what's not.
There's also an enhanced search feature for browsing by category like genre, and when typing in a search, Apple will provide recent searches and suggestions. Apple also now shows top search results with relevant matches across movies, tv shows, cast, channels, and sports.
There's a new Cardio Fitness feature for Apple Watch, which also shows up in the Activity app on the iPhone. Cardio Fitness measures VO2 Max, which is the maximum amount of oxygen that your body is able to consume during exercise.
Measurements are done over time, with the iPhone and Apple Watch able to send notifications to let you know about VO2 Max fluctuations. VO2 Max is a metric that can help you chart your overall fitness level and fitness gains. Cardio Fitness can be accessed through a new trend that's been added to the Activity app, and it can be set up in the Health app on iPhone. Cardio fitness levels are available for users age 20 and above, and are estimated by age.
Cardio Fitness information will vary based on age and sex, and will be categorized into one of four ranges: high, above average, below average, or low. Notifications will let you know if your cardio fitness is at a low level, providing motivation to move more. Apple Watch has previously been able to measure VO2Max, but the new feature includes support for lower ranges that have needed clinical testing in the past.
iOS 14.3 includes support for launching App Clips by scanning Apple-designed App Clip Codes using the Camera or the shortcut in the Control Center.
The Health app has a new section on pregnancy that works with pregnancy tracking devices and provides information on pregnancy. Apple says there are options to indicate pregnancy, lactation, or contraceptive use in Cycle Tracking in the Health app to better manage period and fertile window predictions.
Code in iOS 14.3 also indicates Apple is laying the groundwork to add support for third-party item trackers to the Find My app. Third-party item trackers and Bluetooth-enabled items will be able to be tracked using the Find My app, and it seems the first items with this capability could perhaps be launching soon.
Air quality health recommendations are now provided at specific air quality levels in the U.S., UK, Germany, India, and Mexico, with air quality data provided by Breezometer. Air quality data is also now available in China.
iOS 14.3 fixes a bug that could case some MMS messages to not be received, along with an issue that could prevent contact groups from failing to display members when writing a message.
Some videos were not appearing correctly when shared from the Photos app, and app folders could fail to open, both of which are fixed. Apple addressed a big that could cause opening apps from Spotlight to not work, and the Bluetooth option to fail to appear in Settings.
There's also a fix for a bug that could cause the MagSafe Duo Charger to fail to wirelessly charge an iPhone at less than the maximum power, with full release notes available in our iOS 14.3 release article.