Apple releases iOS 13.5 with COVID specific features

As of today, you can download and update your Apple iPhone to the latest version of the mobile software, iOS 13.5. One of the headline features of iOS 13.5 is a COVID-19 exposure notification that Apple has been working on with Google.

Apple and Google announced the plans to work together on contact tracing that could leverage smartphone features to identify and detect the spread of the coronavirus through monitoring infected patients and the people they come into contact with.

Read: iPhone 12 to come without EarPods?

There are some minor enhancements to make your life easier, one of which updates FaceTime. When you are chatting to several people at the same time, you can now stop the app from automatically resizing different video tiles as the conversation moves to a new main participant. iOS 13.5 also includes several bug fixes (none of which were debilitating).

Another enhancement you’d only find in these unprecedented times is an update to Face ID. The process has been changed and simplified slightly so that it can work properly to unlock your device while wearing a face mask. If it detects that you are wearing a mask, it will go directly to the passcode screen – no more need to get the needed number of Face ID before it goes to the passcode screen. According to the release notes, this will work in the same manner if you want to make an authenticated purchase with Face ID.

In the US where the service is available, you also now have the option to share your health information with emergency services when you make an emergency call.

While this may not be a big update to iOS, it gives us some quick wins before the latest major version of iOS gets launched alongside the iPhone 12 in September.