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November 06, 2018

Apple’s iOS 12.1 is finally here, bringing great new features - including group FaceTime, dual SIM support, and more.

With apps like Camera launching up to 70 percent faster, Apple is continually working on more advanced technologies and new features to keep our iPhones and iPads running smoothly. Whether it's a major update that comes once a year or a point update that brings fixes and small but mighty features, here's where to come to find out all about the latest updates to iOS.

The most important addition to iOS is the group FaceTime, which was declared when iOS 12 was unveiled. Now, you can audio/video chat with up to 32 people using FaceTime in iOS 12.1, and within that group call you can use the same camera effects available in Messages, add filters, stickers, and more.


Talking through illustrated emotions is now practically a new written way of communication and that's the reason World Emoji Consortium is regularly creating and updating new symbols we can add to our collection. Apple is always up to speed on the newest😄 and iOS 12.1 delivers 70 new emoticons to the desk, including freezing face, cupcakes, characters with red hair, gray hair, and curly hair, and more representation for bald people. In addition, Apple is offering Memoji, custom Animoji that can be created to look just like you. You can customize a Memoji's eye color, hair, nose, shape, mouth, and skin tone to generate a 3D virtual representation of yourself, which can be used when clicking photos.

Depth Control in Camera

Next up is depth control in the iOS camera. Apple added the ability to adjust the level of depth perception in Portrait Mode photos, changing the background blur and bokeh effect. With iOS 12.1, you can view and set the depth perception in real time, before taking the picture. The feature is also available on the front-facing camera for devices with TrueDepth cameras, like iPhone XS and iPhone X.

Dual SIM support

Apple's latest line of iPhones, the iPhone XR, iPhone XS, and iPhone XS Max, all support dual SIM. In maximum countries, you get one nano-SIM card and one eSIM. Now, users can activate a second cellular plan without the need for a second physical SIM card.

Siri Shortcuts and Suggestions

Siri is competent of much more via fast actions that can all be assigned via the new Shortcuts app. For instance, if you are using the Tile app, add a shortcut to Siri - I lost my keys. That way, when you lose your keys, Siri will automatically start ringing your Tile. Siri Shortcuts are not only available on iPhones but also on the Apple Watches and HomePods. Using artificial intelligence, Siri adapts your behavioral patterns. Whenever using the Spotlight Search tool, you will see suggestions depending on what you’ve been doing on your device. This can vary from returning a missed phone call or texting a friend back. The more you use iOS 12, the more suggestions Siri will be able to offer you regularly.

Do Not Disturb and Notifications

With a new Do Not Disturb feature, which has more granular controls, you will no longer wake up to a ton of various notifications on your lock screen. Until you toggle Do Not Disturb off, all of your notifications will be hidden, so even if you pick up your iPhone at night, you won't see any notifications until you tap up on the screen.

In iOS 12, Notifications have received a quite substantial update. Multiple notifications of the same app are assorted together and can be managed or deleted in a single go. Notifications can also be tuned from each app to be delivered as they are, quietly, or not at all. Quietly delivered notification will be sent directly to the Center without alerting you.

Screen Time

This feature provides a detailed breakdown of just how long you've been using your iOS devices. You'll avail a detailed report at the end of your week with your average time, total time, and more. There are tools that are created into Screen Time to set limits for yourself on specific apps or certain kinds of apps. When you exceed the time, those apps will automatically shut down for the rest of the day. If you are using iCloud Family Sharing in your home, you can keep a check how much time your kids are spending on their devices.


In the Photo app, there's a new interface for navigating your albums that makes everything simpler to spot. The all-new “For You” tab will give you featured photos and get things like now Effect Suggestions and Memories. It will also proactively recommend people to share your photos by identifying people in those images. For instance, if you go out to dinner and click pictures, you will find suggested photos to share with those friends with whom you specifically want to share. Search in photos has been improved, with support for searching with multiple keywords and intelligent search suggestions. You can now explore based on business name, location, or even an event.

Camera and Augmented Reality

In addition to updating its camera hardware of iPhones, the company has updated its Camera app as well. Portrait mode has got a notable boost in iOS 12 since the app creates a mask when it detects a person in order to separate the person from the scene when processing the image. In case you scan a lot of QR codes with your iPhone, that's also being upgraded and will be highlighted in the camera frame. ARKit 2.0 gives realistic rendering, improved face tracking, and support for 3D object detection. Apple needed to provide easy to experience augmented reality with a new file format named USDZ. USDZ, which is developed in partnership with Pixar, is an open file format that enables developers to generate and share 3D Augmented Reality assets, all via single and compact file format. With AR Quick Look, you can actually instantly make objects you see in built-in apps such as Safari.

CarPlay Supports Third-Party Navigation Apps

Rather than relying on Apple Maps, the company has added support for third-party navigation apps. Now available for CarPlay in iOS 12 is Google Maps and to use it update to the latest version. Other features include traffic updates between home and work if you set up your commute and the ability to access lists to navigate your favorite places.


To flaunt a few new intensifications in ARKit, Apple has added a new Measure app. You can use it to measure anything using your iPhone or iPad thanks to smart object recognition.

Voice Memos and Stocks

Both the Voice Memos and Stocks apps, beforehand iPhone-only, have made their way to the iPad. Both apps have been redesigned and support the content from the News app focused on financial and business info.


Enhanced Intelligent Tracking Prevention to Safari in iOS 12, prevents embedded content and social media buttons from tracking you across multiple sites. Siri now supports navigating to a set of login credentials when asked, although you will still need to confirm, so not to worry about other people getting easy access to your iCloud Keychain.

Other features

  • Apple Music now supports lyric search
  • Updated battery usage charts with more info
  • Artist pages have been redesigned in Apple Music
  • New charts section with the top 100 daily songs
  • New Friends Mix added to Apple Music
  • Automatic software updates on your iPhone or iPad
  • Air quality index included in Weather in supported regions



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