Apple released iOS 15.2 on Monday after an extensive beta period. The latest software update comes with plenty of privacy and safety features including App Privacy Report and communication safety features for kids under 18. The update also includes Apple Music voice plan and the Digital Legacy Program.
First announced at WWDC, the App Privacy Report details how often apps get access to your personal information such as your location, and camera. It also gives users access to the third-party domains the app is contacting to share users data with.
On April 26, Apple rolled out the App Tracking Transparency framework, that forces app developers to request the user’s permission to track them or to access their device’s advertising identifier. Now, in iOS 15.2, users will be able to see what an app is doing with their personal data.
The ATT framework has been Apple’s most controversial and criticized privacy change by both small businesses and its competitors on the advertising side. Snap Inc. said in its Q3 earnings call that Apple’s App Store privacy changes had caused the company to fail to meet revenue expectations for its third quarter. Facebook also experienced revenue headwinds in the third quarter due to Apple’s ATT. Twitter, on the other hand, reported that its quarterly revenue rose 37% to $1.28 billion and avoided the revenue hit from Apple’s privacy changes.
If you want to turn on the App Privacy Report feature, you first need to install iOS 15.2, then go to Settings > Privacy > App Privacy Report > Turn On App Privacy Report. Activity will show once you use your app.
Another feature Apple included in iOS 15.2 is about communication safety for kids under 18. A new tool for Apple’s Messages app will warn children under 18 before sending or opening messages containing nude photos. Parents will be able to enable this in Family Sharing settings and when enabled, flagged photos will appear blurred and warnings will be shown before allowing users to continue.
After being criticized for its plans to scan iPhone images to detect child sexual abuse material (CSAM), Apple announced in September that it has delayed the rollout of its CSAM detection technology. The latest update also brings updates to Safari and Siri that will redirect users to resources if they search for CSAM-related topics.
In iOS 15.2, users will also be able to specify up to five people they want to have access to iCloud data when they pass away. The new Digital Legacy Program will allow you to choose your legacy contacts to access your photos and other files when you die. Apple will provide them with a digital key which only works after you die.
Apple’s $4.99 voice-only plan for Apple Music allows users to control playback via Siri. You can get access to the full Apple Music library via Siri-enabled devices like your iPhone or HomePod Mini. However, it does not include access to lyrics, offline playback, videos, or touch-screen controls.
If you want to subscribe to the new Voice Plan, you can say ““Hey Siri, start my Apple Music Voice trial.”