So far, the major point updates of iOS 13 are all pretty exciting for the iPhone. We have seen iOS 13.1, 13.2 and 13.3 coming and going, with over 60 new features and changes combined with that very first version of iOS 13. Although iOS 13.3.1 was a minor update, its successor, iOS 13.4, is a return to the form.
From 6 February we have discovered ten new improvements that iOS 13.4 (still in beta) will bring. Some will undoubtedly be thrilled, such as the addition of new Memoji stickers or the ability to control your car with just your iPhone. Some are smaller changes under the radar that many people might miss if not declared. Big or small, we don't care ̵
1. Nine new Memoji stickers
Although Apple has added an off switch for the shortcut key for Memoji stickers in iOS 13.3, it does not in any way shun the function. Instead, the company has added nine new stickers in iOS 13.4. These include:
- Face with steam from nose
- Smiling face with hearts
- Festive face
- Face screaming in fear
- Winking face with tongue
- Tipping Hand
- Folded Hands
- Gestures No
2. Move and highlight Return to the Mail toolbar
Mail sees a slight facelift in iOS 13.4 with the addition of two new options in the lower toolbar when viewing an email. These additions were in iOS 12 and older but have finally made a comeback! In earlier versions of iOS 13 we could only delete the e-mail or press reply, with the latter opening a range of options. Those two buttons are still there, but now there are two more: "Move" to change the folder of the e-mail and "Flag" to quickly add or remove a colored flag.
3. Home button models get a small update from the Control Center
In iOS 13.4, Apple has slightly changed the layout of the Control Center for iPhone models with Home buttons so that it resembles the version on Face ID models. With the new update, the network information is at the top left of the display, while the battery statistics are at the top right. Before iOS 13.4, those two corners were empty on older Home button models. Now if we could only get gesture control.
4. MacOS and iOS apps can be purchased together
To make iOS and macOS more cohesive, Apple is now allowing developers to combine iOS and macOS apps into one purchase. That means that if you buy a compatible app in the Mac App Store, you can download the corresponding iOS counterpart for free, just like for apps between iOS and iPadOS.
If you have an iPad with an external keyboard, iOS 13.4 offers some additional functions. Now you can use keyboard shortcuts to communicate with Photos, including navigating tags, searching and creating albums. In full screen you can also remove, duplicate and enter edit mode with these shortcuts.
Originally intended for release as part of iOS 13, iCloud Folder Sharing was suspended until spring 2020 before being re-introduced with iOS 13.4. With this feature, the Files app becomes a Dropbox competitor, allowing you to share an interactive folder with others via the Internet.
7. Drive your car with CarKey
Do you want to operate your car with your iPhone? 9to5Mac discovered a new CarKey API in iOS 13.4, which offers the possibility to operate NFC-compatible vehicles. Like Express Transit, the feature reportedly requires no Face ID or Touch ID to work, and it can work even if your iPhone runs out of energy.
You connect your iPhone to your car with a combination of the wallet app and the car manufacturer's app, and you can also share "keys" with friends and family via the Wallet app.
Speaking of vehicles, CarPlay receives an update in iOS 13.4, with additional navigation support from third parties and new call control.
The TV app receives a small update with Family Sharing on the Library tab. For what it's worth, I don't currently see the feature on my device, but Benjamin Mayo published about it on Twitter.
10. Location Prompt Update
According to 9to5Mac, when an app that was previously authorized for "While using the app" asks for "Always" location permission, your iPhone will display the location verification prompt. It is not clear how the situation worked before, but we feel that we have seen it before, whether our imagination or not.