Apple has released the beta version of its operating system across its platforms, including mobile (iOS 9.3), desktop (El Capitan 10.11.4), Apple TV (tvOS 9.2), and Apple Watch (watchOS 2.2). Alongside, it also released the beta version for Apple Configurator 2.2 and Xcode 7.3. Some of the highlights of the beta release – Watch OS has the ability to pair multiple Apple Watches to a single iPhone, WatchOS includes a new Maps experience, iOS offers a “Night Shift” mode for nighttime reading, improvised Notes app with Touch ID support and more.
The most interesting feature included in iOs 9.3 is “Night Shift,” that automatically reduces the light intensity at nighttime, eliminating the issues with blue light and its ability to interrupt our natural sleep patterns. That being said, it will automatically adjust the light later in the day. Basically, it filters out the blue light, which was already introduced in Amazon’s Fire tablets and Google Play Books.
The company says, “Night Shift uses your iOS device’s clock and geolocation to determine when it’s sunset in your location. Then it automatically shifts the colors in your display to the warmer end of the spectrum, making it easier on your eyes. In the morning, it returns the display to its regular settings.”
Also, the Notes app has been upgraded, now it has Touch ID support, meaning your notes are highly secured. You’ll have to input a password or use your fingerprint to launch Notes, depending on your preference. You can also sort your notes by date created, date modified, or alphabetically, says Apple.
The News app is given little more stress in the update with more suggestions for things like trending topics and Editor’s Picks. Now, the videos will be played faster, and supports landscape mode on iPhone.
Another plus in the iOS 9.3 is that the Health app will make it easier for you to find third-party health apps based on categories. It also now displays your move, exercise and stand data, plus goals, from your Apple Watch. CarPlay also received some upgrades, including “New” and “For You” recommendations from Apple Music, and a “Nearby” feature from Maps will now help you find gas, parking, restaurants and more.
Education scores high in the update with a lot of features including the addition of a single portal for school admins called “Apple School Manager”, support for a new kind of ID for education called “Managed Apple IDs,” a new Classroom app for teachers, and support for a Shared iPad for students.
It offers more tools to schools, admins, and teachers, enabling them to use Apple devices in the classroom, ranging from the School Manager dashboard where admins can shop apps and prep devices for MDM (mobile device management) to tools that let students log into an iPad in the classroom to make it their own.
With the recent update, its facilities support for multiple watches with a single iOS device provided the device should be running iOS 9.3. The Maps app now offers efficient searches, quick direction to destination, and more. The Nearby feature makes easier for users to narrow down the closest places across several categories. WatchOS 2.2 also delivers an upgraded Core Text framework, which allows for complex text layout and rendering graphics contexts, and includes an upgrade to the HealthKit framework, which now includes a summary of the user’s activity for the day.
Meanwhile, the TV platform is also getting a load of new features, including support for pairing Bluetooth keyboards, the ability to move apps into folders on the home screen, a new App Switcher interface, and its own Podcasts app.
OS X 10.11.4 (El Capitan)
The OS X beta is more of an incremental release, compared with that of iOS or even watchOS. According to release text, it will focus on stability, compatibility, and security improvements.