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This is when you can get iOS 16 and watchOS 9

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After months of beta testing, iOS 16 is finally coming to your iPhone.
Photo: Apple

After months of beta testing, Apple has confirmed the final release date of iOS 16 and watchOS 9. The upcoming OS releases will add several new features to your iPhone and Apple Watch.

The Cupertino giant first announced iOS 16 and watchOS 9 at WWDC22 in June this year. It has delayed the release of iPadOS 16 to October alongside macOS Ventura.

iOS 16 and watchOS 9 release date

Apple has been beta testing iOS 16, iPadOS 16, and watchOS 9 since their announcement. So far, it has released eight beta builds to developers, with recent releases focusing on bug fixes and stability. If you are on the beta, your iPhone should receive the RC from Apple later today (September 7).

For the general public, iOS 16 for all compatible iPhones will be out on September 12. watchOS 9 for Apple Watch Series 4 and newer models will also land on the same day.

iOS 16 revamps the Lock Screen experience

The biggest highlight of iOS 16 is the customizable new lock screen. Apple’s Craig Federighi claimed iOS 16 includes “the biggest update ever to the Lock Screen, completely reimagining how it looks and how it works for you.”

You can add widgets to the Lock Screen to quickly access important information. Additionally, you create multiple Lock Screens and link them to different Focus modes.

Live Activities is another key new Lock Screen feature that will arrive later this year.

iOS 16 will also improve the messaging experience, with the Messages app gaining several new features. This includes the ability to edit or undo sending a message. You can even mark a conversation as unread.

The Photos app has also gained some underrated but significant enhancements in iOS 16. You can now copy edits across multiple photos or extract a subject from one image and paste it into another using Visual Look Up.

Apple is also introducing a new Lockdown Mode in iOS 16 for “extreme, optional protection.” It is recommended for users who believe they could be subjected to a sophisticated cyberattack.

Several iOS 16 features won’t arrive at launch, though. Instead, Apple will release them later in the year. And if you have an old iPhone, it will also miss out on some iOS 16 features.

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