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  1. The iOS 14 [and iPadOS 14] Privacy and Security Features You Should Know The latest update for your iPhone and iPad will make them safer than ever. iOS 14 has arrived! Check these new settings to limit how apps and websites track you.Courtesy of Apple iOS 14 has begun rolling out to iPhones worldwide, and as is typical for Apple and a new iOS release, security and privacy enhancements are front and center. The new mobile operating system should make you and your data safer than ever. But it's important to know where these various features are and how to use them. Below you can find the most important security and privacy features your iOS device now has that it didn't have before. Make sure you check them as soon as you've got iOS 14 on your iPhone or iPad. Know When Apps Use Your Camera and Mic Keep an eye on the apps using the camera and microphone. Screenshot: David Nield via Apple Apps on iOS have to explicitly ask for your permission to use the camera and microphone, and from iOS 14 onwards, you'll also see an indicator dot in the top right of the screen when these functions are being used. Green means camera, orange means microphone. This should make it impossible for apps to make recordings without your knowledge. Even if you trust an app enough to give it access to the camera and the mic, it's still reassuring to know that you'll always get an indication when they're being used. If you drag down from the top right corner of the iPhone display to open up Control Center, you'll see information about the apps that most recently used your camera or microphone, just in case you're unsure. Limit Access to Photos and Location You can opt to give apps only an approximate location lock. Screenshot: David Nield via Apple iOS 14 includes a couple of new ways that you can give apps certain permissions, but only up to a point. The idea is that there are some apps you trust a bit more than others in terms of looking at your photos or tracking where you are. If you open Settings in iOS 14 and then choose Privacy and Location Services, you can tap on an app to configure how it can access your phone's location: never, always, only when the app is open, or only when you give explicit permission. There's also a new Precise Location toggle switch, which you can turn off when you're fine if an app knows the general area you're in, but want to keep exact GPS coordinates hidden. From the same Privacy menu, tap Photos and you get a list of apps with access to the pictures and videos stored on your iPhone. Choose an app and then change the option to Selected Photos if you only want the app to have access to a smaller subset of your files. Sniff Out Bad Passwords Apple has been able to sync the passwords and other login credentials for your various accounts across all of your Apple hardware via iCloud for a while now; this applies to macOS as well as iOS. To see what Apple has stored in the cloud from your iPhone, choose Passwords from Settings. New in iOS 14 as well as macOS is a password monitoring system. This will alert you if any of your credentials are spotted in a data breach, which means access to your accounts could be compromised. From the top of the Passwords screen, tap Security Recommendations. You'll see passwords that iOS thinks are problematic, either because of a data breach, or it's too easy to guess, or you've used it elsewhere. Follow any of the Change Password links to pick something new. Discourage Wi-Fi Tracking iOS 14 can make it harder for your device to be tracked across Wi-Fi networks. Screenshot: David Nield via Apple One small but potentially significant change to Wi-Fi security in iOS 14 is the Use Private Address feature that you'll notice if you open up the Wi-Fi menu from Settings, and then tap the blue info button on the right of the network that you're connected to. Whenever a device connects to the web, it gets what's called a MAC (media access control) address so the local network can keep track of it. With a bit of clever monitoring, internet service providers—and from there, advertisers—can also use it to work out where your device logs on and when. This new iOS 14 feature gives your iPhone a different MAC address every time it connects, making it much more difficult for this sort of tracking to work. It's set to be enabled by default for every new network you connect to. Know When Apps Snoop on Your Clipboard If you see a message about apps pasting clipboard information from other apps at the top of your iPhone screen, don't panic: That's just the new clipboard notification feature in iOS kicking into action. As the iOS 14 beta program revealed, plenty more apps monitor the clipboard than you would actually think, even before you've actually pasted anything. Most apps now seem to have tidied up their approach to clipboard access to avoid getting called out. If you're using iOS 14, you should only see the notification when you actually choose to paste something inside an app, in which case the app obviously needs access to the clipboard. Limit How Apps Track You Another change in iOS 14 is that apps will have to specifically request permission to track you across other apps and sites. However, after complaints from advertisers—most notably Facebook, which in August said the move would "severely impact" its lucrative Audience Network—this feature won't be fully enforced until sometime next year. For now, you can head to Privacy then Tracking from the iOS Settings menu, and you'll find a toggle switch for whether you want apps to be able to request permission to track you outside of the actual app itself. This sort of tracking is largely done to better target advertising at you. As the tracking screen in iOS itself notes, apps that you don't give permission to might still try to track you, as per their individual privacy policies. The more effective app-by-app controls should go into effect next year. Vet Apps for Privacy Info One iOS 14 feature that Apple has announced for iOS 14, but which hasn't yet gone live, is app privacy cards. When the feature does appear, these cards will give you more details about how apps make use of the data they collect from you. Presumably developers need a bit more time to get their apps in order—the feature isn't visible at the time of writing—but when it does appear, you should see a new App Privacy button on each of the listings inside the App Store. Follow that link, and you'll be able to see the information you're giving up to a particular app and how that information is being recorded and connected with existing profiles stored on your device or the web. Get Privacy Reports From Safari Safari gives you the details on its cross-site tracker blocking. Screenshot: David Nield via Apple The ability to block cross-site tracking cookies in Safari isn't new in iOS 14; as before, you can find the option under Safari in Settings. Turning on Prevent Cross-Site Tracking makes it much harder for advertisers to link together your browsing activity across different websites. What is new in iOS 14 is the Privacy Report page in Safari. This gives you more detail on exactly what effect the blocking has on your browsing. Tap the AA button in the top left corner of the browser window to see a report for the site you're currently on. You can see the individual trackers in use on a particular page and check up on how many of these trackers Safari has blocked over the past month. You can't really interact with this report in any meaningful way, but it's helpful to have the information available. The iOS 14 Privacy and Security Features You Should Know
  2. Google adds iOS 14 Search widgets, as Chrome and Gmail get default app support Apple launched iOS 14 to the general public on Wednesday, and developers are updating their apps to support the latest features. Google, in an attempt to make access to its apps easier, is adding Search widgets and the ability to set Chrome as the default browser. The Cupertino firm's latest mobile OS lets users create prominent home screen widgets, and Google is making use of that by offering "lightning-fast access to Search." The first widget, pictured below, is 2x2 and has a bar up top that opens the keyboard to allow for immediate text input. The second one spans across the entire home screen and contains three shortcuts: Lens, Voice Search, and Incognito. To set up the widgets, users need to ensure that they have updated to version 125.1 in the App Store. The Mountain View firm has provided the following instructions: Press and hold on the home screen of your iPhone or iPad Tap the plus icon on the upper left corner to open the widget gallery Search for & tap the Google app Swipe right/left to select the widget size Tap “Add Widget” Place the widget and tap “Done” at the upper right corner iOS 14 lets users set the default browser and email app, however, preferences reset after a device reboot for now. Similar to how it operates on desktop platforms, Chrome can open links from any app, while any mailto: links will redirect users to Gmail's compose screen. The browser update is live now, and the Gmail update will be rolling out soon. To set Chrome or Gmail as your default apps, follow these steps: Open the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad, scroll down until you see “Chrome” / "Gmail" and tap on it Tap on “Default Browser App” / "Default Mail App" Choose “Chrome” / "Gmail" Google says that it will add more widgets in the coming weeks to "make your iPhone even more helpful". Google adds iOS 14 Search widgets, as Chrome and Gmail get default app support
  3. Apple's iOS and iPadOS 14 Have Dropped. Here's What’s New Your home screen is changing, and car keys may become optional. These are the top features you need to know in the latest iPhone and iPad update. For years, the iPhone home screen has been a grid of app icons that go on for pages and pages. That's beginning to change.Photograph: Apple The iPhone's software is getting a face-lift. The latest version of Apple's mobile operating system, iOS 14, is now available for download, and you'll notice several visual tweaks when you first install it. Notably, your home screen looks very different, with an app library, widgets everywhere, and a new look for Siri. We've collected all the top upgrades you'll find in iOS 14, along with some small changes, to help you make sense of it all. All of these features are also available in iPadOS 14, the iPad's operating system, which you can also install now. If you're interested in all the new hardware Apple recently announced, check out this roundup. How to Download iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 But first, you might be wondering how you'll be able to install them. Anyone with an iPhone 6S or newer (that includes the 2016 iPhone SE) can download iOS 14 right now. For the tablets, you'll need an iPad Air 2 or newer, an iPad Mini 4 or newer, an iPad 5th generation or newer. All iPad Pro models can install iPadOS 14 now, too. Now, before you install anything, make sure to back up your device. (We have a guide that can help!) Once you've done that, the rest is very simple. Open the Settings app, tap General, and then Software Update. Your device will search for an update and will then start downloading it. It will take a few minutes and will automatically restart, so make sure you initiate this when you aren't doing anything important. As a word of advice, the first version of new Apple updates can still have some bugs. The safest bet is to wait a day or two to see if there are reports about any major issues. If not, you can rest easy installing it. Now, onto what's new. App Library For years, the iPhone home screen has been a grid of app icons that go on for pages and pages. That's changed now. In iOS 14, you can hide pages of apps you don't use often, and a scroll to the right will let you access your new App Library. It's quite similar to the app drawer on Android phones, but instead of more icons in an endless vertical stream, apps are grouped into various categories like Social, Productivity, and Entertainment. The top two categories (which look like big folders) are Suggested and Recent Apps. Suggested Apps uses machine learning to recommend apps you might want to use next, and Recent Apps shows apps you recently used or installed. There's also a search bar at the top. Photograph: Apple Widgets Until now, the iPhone's widgets have been relegated to the Today View on the left of the main screen. Now, you can pull these widgets out and into your home screen (just like on Android) and get alternate sizes for them (you can't pull widgets out of Today View on iPadOS). This allows you to customize how your phone looks and quickly access certain functions, like switching music tracks with your music app's widget. To see all the widgets available with the apps you have installed, there's a Widget Library. Just be aware that developers may not have widgets ready yet (or no plans to make one) for your apps. One particular widget from Apple is Smart Stack, which bundles together a variety of widgets into one oblong-shaped box. You can swipe through this to see the others, or Smart Stack will automatically change the widget based on time of day and your usual activity. For example, in the morning, Smart Stack might show you a morning news briefing. In the afternoon, it might switch to your calendar widget, and in the evening, it might show your fitness activity summary. Picture-in-Picture Mode If you're watching a movie on your iPhone but need to switch to a messaging app to respond to someone, Apple's new Picture-in-Picture mode means you don't need to hit the pause button. Instead, you'll see a floating screen over your home screen (or any other app). You can resize it, drag it around, and control video playback. You can even minimize it to the side of the screen but still have audio playing if you need your iPhone's full screen for something else. Siri Gets a Revamp A new version of Siri won't take up your whole screen when you just want to ask a question. Instead, Siri now looks like a small bubble at the bottom. Ask it for the weather and you'll see a pop-up notification at the top of the screen with the answer. It's a little smarter too. It can access information from across the web (to some degree) and can also now send audio messages for you in the Messages app. Photograph: Apple A Translate App Apple's moving in on Google with its new Translate app. At the moment, it supports 11 languages, and an on-device mode keeps text and voice translations private. If you turn your iPhone into landscape view, the app will turn on Conversation mode, which offers a side-by-side view that makes it easy for both parties to see the translation. Photograph: Apple Messages Improvements Your Messages app is getting a slew of updates. First, you can pin important conversations to the very top of the app. These will appear as big circles, different from the other threads in the app, and you can pin up to nine threads. For group messages, you'll see circular images of everyone in a group at the top of the screen, and people who have been more active than others will appear slightly bigger (you can also set a group photo). In group chats, you can reply inline to specific messages and view this as a separate thread. You can also type someone's name to "mention" someone, similar to using the @ function on other messaging apps like Facebook Messenger or Slack. With the latter feature, you can have conversations only send a notification if you have been mentioned. There are new Memoji designs to choose from, including 20 new hair and headwear styles, more face coverings, and age options. There are three new Memoji stickers too: a hug, a fist bump, and a blush. Maps and CarPlay Updates The redesigned Apple Maps that Apple introduced last year is available in three new countries: the UK, Ireland, and Canada. Apple says it's also working with trusted brands to integrate travel guides into Apple Maps, which include recommendations for places around you. Perhaps even more helpful, Maps can now tell you when you are approaching a speed sensor or red-light camera. Cycling navigation is also available in Maps. It will take into account elevation, so you'll know if you'll be dealing with a lot of hills. Unfortunately, it's only available in New York, Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area, Shanghai, and Beijing to start. More cities are on the way in the coming months. You can ask Siri for cycling directions. If you have an electric car, you'll be happy to learn that Apple has added EV routing into Maps. It takes into account temperature, weather, elevation, and other information to automatically add charging stations to your route if you'll need to juice up soon. Apple says it's working on deep integration with car manufacturers like BMW and Ford, so it will know exactly which stations will support your car. You will soon be able to tap your phone to the door of a car to unlock it via NFC technology, just like paying with Apple Pay. If you lose your iPhone, you can turn off keys remotely via iCloud. You can even "share" your car key via iMessage and set restricted driver profiles, which can limit things like acceleration, top speed, and more. The first car to support this feature will be the 2021 BMW 5 Series, and it will likely take a number of years for a good portion of vehicles to support it. Photograph: Apple App Clips Apple wants to make it easier for you to find and use new apps based on what you are doing and where you are. This comes in the form of App Clips, which are bite-sized versions (10-megabytes or less) of apps that you can use for one-off instances. For example, if you're browsing Panera's menu in Safari or looking up the closest restaurants near you in Maps, an App Clip might pop up from the bottom of your screen. It's a lightweight version of the Panera app you can use to check the menu and place an order for pick up. It relies on Apple Pay and Apple's sign-in instead of requiring you to make a Panera account if you don't have one. Another example is using an App Clip to pay for a parking meter or rent a scooter. These App Clips can be found by tappable NFC tags or QR codes around you. If you need to find an App Clip again, you can see it in the new App Library, so you can download the full app later if you want. It's very similar to Android Instant Apps, which Google introduced a few years ago. iPadOS Gets Scribble If you have an Apple Pencil, you're now able to write with it in any text field, like a search bar, and the iPad will convert your handwriting into text. It means you don't need to rely on the virtual keyboard as much when you're not using a physical keyboard. What's also nice is you can select your handwriting using a Smart Selection tool, and if you paste it into an app that doesn't support handwriting, the iPad will automatically transcribe it into text. There's also a Shape Recognition tool, which will perfect your sloppily-drawn shapes. It's handy if you want to keep things neat or if you're making diagrams. Other Notable Small Changes Those are some of the major iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 upgrades. Here are some smaller tidbits. If you want to read every single update, check out Apple's iOS 14 preview website and the one for iPadOS 14. You can change the default email and web browser apps. So you can replace Apple's Mail app with Gmail, for example. Universal Search's interface will no longer interrupt what you're doing, and you can use it to search for anything—like installed apps or contacts—not to mention complete web searches. You can even search within apps. Similarly, when you get a call, the notification will be a banner at the top instead of hogging the whole screen. You'll be able to "Sign in With Apple" inside apps by tapping a button to port your existing accounts into your Apple account. You can search for emojis with the keyboard and the keyboard's dictation feature now uses the same engine as the one used for Siri, meaning your dictations will be more accurate. It's also running on-device, so it works offline. You'll now see a pop-up notification when an app wants to track you across apps and websites owned by other companies. You can allow it or ask the app not to track you. This means it will reduce the amount of data collected by the app. Similarly, new cards in the App Store will show what kind of data an app might collect before you install it. It's meant to act just like the nutrition label on food packaging. You can also share App Store subscriptions with your whole family. For camera upgrades, the camera can now shoot photos up to 90 percent faster, at up to four frames per second. QuickTake video is now available on the iPhone XR and XS. And you can quickly toggle the video resolution and frame rate in video mode. If you have an iPhone 11 or 11 Pro, Night mode now offers up a guidance indicator to make sure you stay steady during capture, and you can also cancel a Night mode shot midway instead of waiting until the end. There is also a camera recording indicator in the status bar and you can add captions to photos and videos in the Photos app. Select Apple apps in iPadOS now feature a sidebar for easier navigation, making better use of the larger screen. The Health app now lets you add how much sleep you want to get every night. A Wind Down mode prepares your phone for bedtime and wake-up, so you can schedule things like playing soothing sounds. It automatically turns on Do Not Disturb and Sleep mode. The latter will dim your phone screen, show the date, time, and next alarm. On the privacy front, you can share your approximate location with apps instead of your precise location. The Control Center also shows which apps recently accessed your microphone or camera. And if you connect to a Wi-Fi network that doesn't use a private Wi-Fi address, you'll get a warning. You can assign reminders to people you share lists with, and they will get a reminder. Apple's iOS and iPadOS 14 Have Dropped. Here's What’s New
  4. iPadOS 14 first look: the good, the bad and the missing features Here's how we've found iPadOS 14 after a few days of using it. iPadOS 14 (Image credit: Apple) Although iPadOS 14 hasn't been officially released to all compatible iPads just yet, its beta recently rolled out to everybody on the Apple Beta Software Program, so we've been able to test out an early build of it. iPadOS 14 is the new operating system update coming to lots of iPads towards the end of 2020, and it brings a range of new features (many of which are also in iOS 14) which people have been asking for. We've been testing out iPadOS 14 for a few days now, seeing which of its features are great, which fit naturally into the way we use our iPad, and which might actively change how we use a tablet. We've broken down the new features into three categories - the good, which we found useful or anticipate being a big part of the iPadOS 14 experience; the bad, which we found didn't work well or we completely ignored; and the missing, or features which were announced as part of iPadOS 14 but don't seem to be present in the beta. iPadOS 14: the good Seconds after this screenshot was taken, we were seeing a Google search result page for 'TechRadar' (Image credit: TechRadar) One of the most anticipated features of iPadOS 14 was the ability for it to convert notes written with the Apple Pencil into actual text for text entry boxes, and we're happy to say this seemed to work even better than expected. When we had selected a text entry box, we could pick up the Apple Pencil and write over it, and the iPad generally recognized what we wrote. Bear in mind we have terrible handwriting, and for the most part the results returned were accurate. We'd imagine people with neat handwriting will find this feature flawless, and even messier writers won't be disappointed. It's not clear if the AI can learn to understand your handwriting better over time, but that would be neat too. Not only can you use the Apple Pencil to write, you can also edit text with it. Drawing a horizontal line through text will select it all so you can easily edit it, and drawing a vertical line will add in a space. We'd imagine these will really help people out, as they're easier than using your finger for those same functions. We just had to type 'g' and 'm' then hit 'enter' and we're into the Gmail app. (Image credit: Apple / TechRadar) Another neat iPadOS 14 feature is the improved search bar, as we found one small change sped up operating system navigation. Before, when you searched, apps which seemed to match your search would appear below the search bar, but now when you start typing, the app that seems most like your search term will be auto-appended - if you hit enter, this app opens straight away. For example, when we typed 'gm', Gmail automatically appeared, and we just had to press enter to open it, rather than reach up to the screen to get it to open. This saved a few seconds every time we were looking to open a different app. iPadOS 14: the bad Other than Apple Pencil text conversion, the other anticipated feature for iPadOS 14 (which is mainly an iOS 14 feature) is widgets, and we're very disappointed by their iPadOS 14 beta implementation. Hopefully it will change by the time iPadOS 14 fully rolls out. Currently, iPadOS 14 widgets can only be displayed on the home screen sidebar, which already housed rudimentary widgets. It doesn't seem that you can move them from this position, ruining the 'customization' ability that we were expecting. At the moment the widgets are only available for specific Apple apps like Apple Music or Apple Maps, which means the selection is very limited, and presumably app developers will have to all work on making their own individual iPadOS widgets before more will be available. This could take a long time, especially if some developers don't deem it necessary. The big weather widget on the left won't populate for some reason, though the smaller weather widget above it, and the screen time widget below, eventually did. (Image credit: Apple / TechRadar) On top of that, the widgets we tested didn't initially manage to pull through stats. The weather and screen time widgets showed blank fields no matter how many times we tried to set them up or reset them, until some (but not all) of the stats curiously appeared unprompted during the writing of this article. This seems to be a bug and it will likely be fixed for future iPadOS 14 beta builds. Another dubious change is 'compact notifications', which supposedly is meant to make notifications smaller and less intrusive for if you're watching content or playing games. We didn't notice much of a change in notifications at all, except sometimes they didn't even show up. Is this part of the feature or not? Your guess is as good as ours. iPadOS 14: all the missing features Plenty of features confirmed or rumored to be part of iPadOS 14 just aren't present in the beta, as far as we could find. The 'low power mode' that was rumored to be part of the operating system update isn't here, as far as we can tell - there's no mention of it in the Control Center or Battery section of the main menu. The iOS 14 security feature that was meant to be present in the App Store, where it would apparently list all the permissions an app would ask of you so you can make up your mind whether to download it, doesn't seem to be here either. When we looked at App Store listings of various apps there was no such feature, but hopefully this will come in later betas of iPadOS 14. The sidebar in Photos has plenty of options. (Image credit: Apple / TechRadar) The iPadOS 14 sidebar overhaul doesn't seem to be here, at least in certain apps, because in some the only difference we've noticed is it looks slightly different. Other apps have more fleshed-out sidebars though. So there are quite a few features that aren't available in the iPadOS 14 beta, but their absence isn't worrying, because Apple betas don't always contain all the confirmed features. Instead, Apple likely just wants to test out some of the more anticipated features to make sure it's gotten them right. In iPadOS 14's next beta release we'd hope to see some of the widget issues fixed, as well as perhaps some of the features on this omissions list. We're going to continue to test out iPadOS 14 too, just in case there are some features hidden away in the OS that Apple hasn't mentioned and that haven't been discovered yet. iPadOS 14 first look: the good, the bad and the missing features
  5. Hands-on with the iPadOS 14 developer beta Last year, Apple introduced iPadOS as a way to demonstrate that the operating system for iPhones and the one for iPads are not the same. There was one issue though, which was that they actually were the same. iPadOS 13 was still very much iOS 13, but with some extra tablet-centric features. The company announced iPadOS 14 this week at WWDC, and this is where we can see iOS and iPadOS drift apart a bit more. In fact, the UI changes coming in iOS 14 aren't coming to iPadOS. That includes widgets on the home screen and the new App Library. Presumably, this is because iPads have their own widget space on the home screen, and the dock is bigger. At the same time, we're starting to see some of the design elements that were introduced in macOS Big Sur. Indeed, iPadOS is beginning to become a cross between iOS and macOS. The release notes for iOS and iPadOS are still the same, but that will probably change at some point. Other than that, iPadOS 14 is very much focused on handwriting recognition. You can now use the Apple Pencil to write in any text field, and it will automatically be converted to typed text. In fact, Apple's goal is to make using the Pencil as easy as using a keyboard, adding gestures for erasing text, inserting space between text, and more. Check out the hands-on video below: Hands-on with the iPadOS 14 developer beta
  6. Apple Pushes Back Against Ad Tracking in Safari and iOS 14 [and iPadOS 14] At WWDC, the company detailed a litany of privacy-friendly improvements to its software. Photograph: Apple As a company that still makes the majority of its money selling hardware, Apple is perhaps less interested in tracking and monetizing your activity than other tech giants. Over the years it has pitched this as a competitive advantage, emphasizing that its products are designed to prioritize privacy. As the company detailed in its pre-taped Worldwide Developers Conference keynote Monday, Apple will double down on data protection in its upcoming iOS 14, macOS Big Sur, and Safari releases. The improvements largely focus on who can access and share your data, when, and why. After years of increasingly opaque innovations from social networks, marketing firms, and advertisers who all want to track and monetize your online behavior, Apple's emphasis on transparency could help users take back some control. But even a company as large and moneyed as Apple doesn't have a panacea for every privacy woe. Going on Safari Safari had already established its bona fides as a privacy browser as recently as 2018, when it took a strong stand against ad trackers, chiefly by making it difficult for them to "fingerprint" your device as you browse around the web. In macOS Big Sur, Safari will include a specific "Privacy Report" to break down what specifically Safari is blocking and give you more insight into which trackers are cropping up in your daily browsing. Additionally, Apple will now support more browser extensions in Safari and make it easier to find them in the Mac App Store. But the company also seems acutely aware of the risk that rogue extensions have posed to other browsers, given the expansive permissions they often receive to access your data and view whatever you're doing online. So Safari will include granular controls that let you dictate which extensions work on which websites—that way they don't necessarily all have access to everything all the time. Photograph: Apple Apple also said that its privacy-focused single sign-on product "Sign in with Apple" has been used to make more than 200 million accounts since its debut at WWDC a year ago. The company is adding a feature that will make it easier for people to convert their existing online accounts into versions managed by Sign in with Apple. Apple's Safari will also start checking any passwords you store in the browser—without sharing them with Apple—and can alert you if any have been compromised in a data breach. iOS 14 [and iPadOS 14] Apps on Notice Apple's tracking controls will extend to iOS 14 more broadly as well. A version of its "Intelligent Tracking Prevention" for Safari will give iPhone and iPad users more control over clandestine tracking not just within their browser, but between apps. "This year we wanted to help you with tracking in apps," said Katie Skinner, a user privacy software manager at Apple during the keynote. "We believe tracking should always be transparent and under your control. So moving forward, App Store policy will require apps to ask before tracking you across apps and websites owned by other companies." In iOS 14, you'll see a prompt when an app is trying to track you across other services. You'll have the option to "Allow Tracking" or "Ask App Not to Track." It's notable that "asking" seems different from "blocking," but Apple says in its notes to developers that they will need this permission from users to conduct external tracking. An Apple spokesperson specifically told WIRED that if a user doesn't consent to tracking, the app won't be able to access a type of identifier often used in targeted advertising and other tracking called the IDFA identifier. This would likely be similar to invoking the existing iOS feature "Limit Ad Tracking," which zeros out a user's IDFA number, but doesn't preclude tracking with other identifiers. Apple lists two exceptions through which an app can track a user without permission: when an app is sharing data locally on a user's device with another app but never leaves the device in an identifying way, and when the data will be used for fraud detection and prevention or other security protections. While any step toward reducing inter-app tracking is significant, the new framework likely won't resolve the problem of online tracking overnight. "It’s an improvement, but I'm unsure how well it will actually work," says Will Strafach, an iOS security researcher and creator of the Guardian Firewall app for iOS. "I can tell you now, bad actors will run wild with the 'not sent off the device in a way that can identify the user or device' caveat. Tracking companies have hidden behind that excuse for years. Unless Apple suddenly gets a whole lot more aggressive about how they screen apps, this will only be helpful when developers are willing to be honest." A similar issue comes up with another new privacy feature. In an attempt to make it more clear what data an app will collect, Apple will add a tailored breakdown on App Store product pages that lists different privacy considerations. Developers will need to detail which types of data the app collects and whether it will be connected to a user's identity for tracking. Developers will also have to spell out the third-party software development kits and other modules incorporated into their apps, what those components do, what data they collect, and how it will be used. On Monday, Apple compared these charts to nutrition labels, an approach to sharing transparent security and privacy information that some researchers have found effective. But developers will self-report what data they're collecting and whether there is any tracking going on in their apps, a major limitation of the labels if developers aren't fully candid. Other changes are more concrete, though. Beginning with iOS 14, you'll see an indicator in the status bar when an app is using your device's microphone or camera, much like the green light that goes on when a MacBook's built-in webcam is in use. And you'll be able to share an approximate location with apps, within about 10 miles, rather than giving away more precise data. This way apps can pinpoint you down to the city you're in rather than the block. You can already cobble together some of the privacy protections Apple announced on Monday through other operating systems and browsers. But it's still a challenge to get everything together in one place. With these and other cumulative improvements, Apple seems determined to make a bid for the most privacy-friendly offerings out there. Apple Pushes Back Against Ad Tracking in Safari and iOS 14
  7. iPadOS 14 release date, features and compatibility details Meet Apple's newest iPad operating system iPadOS features (Image credit: Apple) Apple has announced iPadOS 14, its newest operating system for iPads, so we now know the original iPadOS wasn't a one-off, and Apple will continue to provide bespoke software updates for its tablets. iPadOS, released in 2019, was a forked version of iOS which had a few features designed just for iPads, and iPadOS 14, its successor, announced alongside iOS 14 at Apple's WWDC 2020 event, brings even more tweaks that will hopefully improve your iPad experience. Apple gave an overview of the new operating system during its WWDC keynote, but we often find with Apple software there are more key features it doesn't share the details of straight away, so we'll update this article over time as more information comes to light. Apple has released a device compatibility list, and it's good news for people who liked the original version of iPadOS, as no devices that were able to download that version have been left off this new list, and of course it includes new iPads released in the last year. We don't yet know the iPadOS 14 release date, or even when its beta will drop, but again we'll let you know as soon as Apple shares that info. Cut to the chase What is it? Apple's next big update for iPads When is it out? Likely around September, but with a beta before How much will it cost? Nothing iPadOS 14 release date and availability We're not sure when iPadOS 14 will drop – while Apple's software is generally unveiled at WWDC, it's usually released later, alongside that year's new iPhones, which this year will be the iPhone 12 range. However, the Covid-19 pandemic has reportedly caused the iPhone 12 release to be pushed back, and we're not sure by how much, so we could see iPadOS 14 released at any point from the eventual iPhone launch date to the end of the year, or perhaps even 2021. An iPadOS 14 beta will likely be released before then though, and it's possible that one will be unveiled after WWDC 2020. This will be a preliminary version of the update that keen users can download to try it out. (Image credit: Future) iPadOS 14 compatibility Apple has officially unveiled its iPadOS 14 compatibility list, and it includes all the devices that were able to get the original iPadOS build, plus the new iPads released since. iPad Pro 12.9 (2020) iPad Pro 11 (2020) iPad Pro 12.9 (2018) iPad Pro 12.9 (2017) iPad Pro 12.9 (2015) iPad Pro 11 (2018) iPad Pro 10.5 (2017) iPad Pro 9.7 (2016) iPad Air (2019) iPad Air 2 iPad (10.2) iPad (2018) iPad (2017) iPad Mini (2019) iPad Mini 4 iPadOS 14 features The following features are ones Apple has confirmed are coming to iPadOS 14. iPadOS sidebar The first new feature Apple mentioned for iPadOS 14 is an improvement for its own apps – it used Photos as an example, and mentioned Notes and Files too – which adds a sidebar to improve navigation, in the same way that macOS has a bar at the side of Finder windows which shows all the menus available. If it wasn't already clear that Apple wants iPadOS to feel like a 'Lite' version of macOS, it certainly is now. iPadOS 14 widgets (Image credit: Apple) Arguably the biggest new iOS 14 feature is widgets, and this is coming to iPadOS too – and it's possible that these will be even more useful on the larger iPad screens. Widgets let you bring little snapshots of an app's functionality to your home screen –say a music controller for your Spotify music, or blobs that show how much money you've got in your bank account. In iPadOS 13 you could see these to the side of the home screen, but you couldn't move them about to different screens – now you can. Android devices have had these kinds of widgets for over 10 years now, and with Apple bringing them to iPhones and iPads it means there's one less distinction between the operating systems. Widgets you don't assign to your home pages will still stay in the sidebar on the first page though, and a new feature called Smart Stacks can automatically bring up which it thinks will be most useful for you depending on where you are, what time it is and what you're doing at the time. iPadOS 14 Siri As with iOS 14, Siri is getting an overhaul with iPadOS 14, which includes smarter machine learning for improved results, and compact notifications for incoming calls instead of a total screen takeover. Search has been downsized too, so you don't need to hide the app you're using – a small search bar appears over your app or the home screen without hiding it completely. It's now better at searching your iPad for apps and documents, as well as browsing the web for answers to questions. iPadOS 14 Apple Pencil (Image credit: Future) A big Apple Pencil feature coming to iPadOS is that the operating system will convert your handwritten and scrawled notes into actual text, which you can insert into a document or use in an email, for example. This will be hugely useful for people who prefer writing with their hand over typing on a keyboard (or people who simply don’t have a keyboard for their iPad), and it’ll be great for quickly taking notes or turning annotations into actual documents. This works by you simply scribbling with your Apple Pencil over any text box, and the notes will be transformed into text. The same principle applies for shapes, so if you're in a drawing or sketching app the device can 'see' shapes you try to draw, as well as lines, and convert them into more precise shapes to neaten things up. iPadOS 14 features from iOS 14 The majority of iPadOS 14's big new features are actually from iOS 14, and while we've mentioned most of the major ones already, we should mention a few more. Apple Maps has been gradually getting a big upgrade through 2020, with more US cites getting improved mapping and street view, and this will also come to cities in the UK and Canada with iOS 14 and iPadOS 14. Messages is getting changes so that you can pin conversations, reply to specific messages in group chats and @ people to send specific messages to them in busy group chats. Check out our iOS 14 page for everything else you need to know about that operating system, and to read more about these and other features. iPadOS 14 release date, features and compatibility details
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