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February 9, 2018

Apple’s iOS 11.3 update will bring big changes, here’s a few of our favorites

by John_A

Apple isn’t waiting until iOS 12 to bring some major changes to your iPhone or iPad. This spring, Apple will release iOS 11.3, a mid-year update that brings nearly a dozen new features.

You can download the beta to check it out, but some of the announced features won’t be available until a later date. Still, there’s a lot to look forward to in this update. Here are our favorite iOS 11.3 features.

Performance and battery controls

After Apple was accused of throttling older iPhones in December, the company promised to provide a software update to address the issue. With the iOS 11.3 update, you can access battery health information in the Settings app. You can disable the power management feature that tends to slow down iPhone — be warned, however, as disabling the power management feature on an iPhone with an older battery may cause your device to shut down unexpectedly. It’s why Apple implemented the power management feature in the first place.

Purchase options for iPhone X

While Face ID on the iPhone X makes authentication incredibly simple, it has a few drawbacks. One of which is the need to use a password whenever you want to authenticate family purchases. The iOS 11.3 update finally addresses this oversight and lets you use Face ID to authorize any family purchases. This feature is currently available in the beta.

Medical records

If you’ve ever requested medical records from your doctor’s office, you’ll appreciate Apple’s decision to integrate the data from these records into the Health app. The iOS 11.3 update allows certain medical providers to port medical records directly to your iPhone, meaning you get access to your records immediately. You can quickly check for any updates or lab results from your provider. You can see the list of supported providers through the Health app.

Improved Augmented Reality

#arkit image detection 1st try: success! As @Apple said, great feature for museums. Now I need content for 2300 paintings @NationalGallery pic.twitter.com/1m3LZVVCfJ

— Romain Derrien (@LondonRom) January 28, 2018

Apple is adding some pretty significant augmented reality (AR) updates in iOS 11.3. For starters, the update lets you to interact with certain objects and images. If you snap a picture of a book, for example, you’ll see a rating and shopping information from Amazon. It’s an impressive update that reminds us a lot of Google Lens on the Pixel 2.

A new way to read

If you use your iPhone or iPad to read a lot of books, you may like Apple’s updated ebook app in iOS 11.3. Books is more streamlined than its predecessor, and it offers a better selection of curated content. There’s also now a dedicated audiobooks tab, a long overdue feature that lets you search for audiobooks without needing to tap the Featured or Top Charts tabs. Although you’ll see an updated Books app on the beta, it hasn’t been updated to reflect the new features yet.

The final version of iOS 11.3 will be available this spring.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • The iOS 11.3 update lets you to turn off performance throttling on your iPhone
  • Here’s how to enroll in the iOS beta program to get updates early
  • Apple’s iOS 11.3 update will (finally) open a window on battery life
  • ‘Pokémon Go’ levels up its augmented reality abilities with Apple’s ARKit
  • Here’s how to use Apple Pay with your iPhone, Apple Watch, or Mac


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