Apple iOS 16.3 Is Out With Stronger Security, Key Changes To Emergency Services And More

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Apple's latest iOS update brings a new Black History Month design, security updates, bug fixes, and more. One of the major security changes is the addition of Security Keys for Apple ID, allowing users to strengthen the security of their account by requiring a physical security key as part of the two-factor authorization process.

iPhones have always been known for their security features. It is one reason so many companies have turned to Apple for company-issued smartphones. Now, Apple has given users another layer of security with the ability to add a third-party security key. Security keys are a physical means of security that cannot be overcome by online hackers. Diya Jolly, Chief Product Officer of authentication service company, told CNET in an interview, "Hardware security keys are very, very secure."

ios 16 3 update notes

February is Black History Month, and Apple is paying homage with a new iPhone wallpaper as part of its Black Unity Collection. This collection includes a special-edition Apple Watch Black Unity Sport Loop, a mosaic watch face, along with the new iPhone wallpaper.

The Emergency SOS feature also received an update with iOS 16.3. The Call with Hold option has been replaced with Call with Hold and Release. According to Apple, this was done "in order to prevent inadvertent emergency calls." Those who choose this feature will hold the side button and volume button to initiate a countdown and an alarm. Once the countdown completes, you release the buttons and your iPhone will call emergency services on its own. This essentially removes the screen with the Emergency SOS call slider from the process.

For those with an Apple HomePod, iOS 16.3 also includes an update that supports the second-gen HomePod. The second-gen HomePod is set to launch on February 3, 2023, for $299.

Other updates in iOS 16.3 include fixes for Freeform, address issues where wallpaper may appear black on the Lock Screen, and fixes an issue where horizontal lines appear while waking up iPhone 14 Pro Max.

Those who own an iPad should have seen the update for iPadOS 16.3 as well. This update also brings the ability to use security keys with an iPad, and support for second-gen HomePods. It also fixes an issue in Freeform with the Apple Pencil, and addresses an issue where Siri may not respond properly to music requests.