APPLE'S huge new iOS 13 update for your iPhone launched today – and it's loaded with new features.
The biggest changes include a new Dark Mode, an upgraded Maps app, and swipe-to-type texting.
The software will be available on all iPhone models from the iPhone 6S upwards.
Apple also announced that iOS 13.1 will be available on September 30, introducing new features and bug fixes.
iOS 13 – what is it?
Apple typically sends out a major update to iOS – the software that powers your iPhone – every September.
As well as performance boosts, the upgrade adds new tools to your phone's arsenal that Apple have spent months developing.
Apple officially unveiled iOS 13 – its latest update – back in March, but is only now releasing the final version to the world.
Everything launched at the Apple event
Here’s everything we saw…
- Three new iPhones
- Apple Watch Series 5
- New iPad
- Apple TV+ news
- Apple Arcade games on App Store
iOS 13 features – what's new?
Perhaps the most exciting new feature is the addition of Dark Mode.
This is a black theme for your iPhone that makes it easier on your eyes in the dark.
It's a long-awaited (and widely rumoured) feature that is already offered by a number of apps, including Facebook Messenger and Twitter.
Also added is a new "swipe to type" function for texting. This lets you drag your finger around the keyboard to type words, just like the SwiftKey keyboard or Android phones.
Apple Maps is also getting some much-needed love, with 3D terrain mapping (courtesy of Apple flying and driving across the USA with scanning tech).
Other countries will get this eventually, but it's US-only for now.
Apple is introducing a new 'Sign In With Apple' feature that offers an alternative to 'Log In With Facebook' buttons you see on websites.
It means you'll be able to sign up easily (and privately) for websites using your Apple, with an option to share a fake email that reroutes emails to your actual account.
Each app gets a unique random email address, so you can disable them at any time when you're "tired of hearing from that app", Apple exec Craig Federighi explained earlier this year.
It'll be available across all of Apple's platforms, and across the web.
Your iPhone camera roll is getting a major upgrade too, thanks to artificial intelligence.
There'll be an option to hide duplicate photos, boring screenshots and photos of receipts, so you see a streamlined album of your best snaps.
It should make looking through your camera roll much more enjoyable.
You can split your camera roll into 'Days', 'Months' and 'Years' to see attractive highlights over those time periods, with the AI tech applied to make it look "beautiful", according to Apple.
Upgrades to Siri's text-to speech function will apparently make her sound less robotic, while Memoji are getting more customisable with the addition of new makeup and accessory options.
Spam calls will also become easier to deal with: iOS 13 can automatically silence unknown callers.
As well as tonnes of new tools to play with, Apple is adding a number of performance upgrades.
We've summed up some of the most exciting below.
- Face ID will unlock your phone 30% faster
- App Store downloads are 50% smaller, due to a re-jig of how apps are package
- App updates are now 60% smaller than before
- App launch speed is up to twice as fast as before
Speeds will vary depending on the iPhone model you have, but it's going to be super beneficial to any iPhone owner that can access iOS 13.
iOS 13 release time, date and availability – how do I upgrade?
The new update is available from Thursday, September 19.
Apple hasn't announced when it'll go live, but the release typically falls between 6pm and 7pm UK time.
To get your mitts on it, simply update your iPhone to the latest version of iOS by tapping Settings > General > Software Update > Update and Install.
iOS 13 supported devices revealed – which iPhone models can upgrade?
Here's the full list of iPhone models that can upgrade to iOS 13:
- iPhone 11 Pro
- iPhone 11 Pro Max
- iPhone 11
- iPhone XS
- iPhone XS Max
- iPhone XR
- iPhone X
- iPhone 8
- iPhone 8 Plus
- iPhone 7
- iPhone 7 Plus
- iPhone 6s
- iPhone 6s Plus
- iPhone SE
- iPod touch (7th generation)
Any other iPhone models won't be eligible to download the iOS 13 update.
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Looking for a new Apple blower? Check out our review for the great-value iPhone 11.
If you're willing to spend a little more, you'll want to read our iPhone 11 Pro review.
And if you've already got an iPhone, browse our list of the best iPhone apps.
Will you be upgrading to the new iOS – or even a new iPhone – this week? Let us know in the comments!
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