Apple has released iOS 12.1 with Group FaceTime, 70 new emojis, Dual SIM support, Depth Control in camera for iPhone XS and iPhone XR, fix for ‘beautygate’ and much more. The new release is available as an over-the-air update for compatible iPhone, iPad and iPod touch models. It is also available via iTunes and as IPSW firmware files.
iOS 12.1 Features and Changelog
Here are all the new features in iOS 12.1:
Originally announced for iOS 12, this feature was delayed during beta testing as it was not ready in time. With Group FaceTime, users can have voice and video group calls with up to 32 friends. The calls are still end-to-end encrypted which makes them secure to use.
Apple announced that 70 new emojis will be added to iOS 12.1, macOS Mojave 10.14.1 and watchOS 5.1. The new emojis include new hair styles and colors, animals and much more. Find out more about the new emojis.
Dual SIM support
Dual SIM/eSIM support will allow users to use two numbers at a time on iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR. This feature was not enabled on these devices at launch but will be useable after iOS 12.1 update. Dual SIM on these devices also requires carrier support, unless you are in China or Hong Kong, where users can buy an iPhone with two physical SIMs.
With the new Depth Control in iPhone XS and iPhone XR, users can adjust the background blur or bokeh effect, after capturing a portrait mode photo. However, with iOS 12.1, users can adjust the background blur in real-time, right from the camera viewfinder.
Beautygate became an issue of sorts when YouTubers starts posting videos that their selfies are appearing over-edited on iPhone XS. Apple reported that this issue is happening because the sharpest frame is not being selected in selfies and it would be fixed in an update.
Here is the complete list of updates from Apple:
iOS 12.1 Compatible Devices
The following devices are supported by iOS 12.1:
- iPhone 5s and above
- iPad Air and above
- All iPad Pro models
- iPad mini 2 and above
- iPod touch 6th generation
Update to iOS 12.1
Before you upgrade, make sure that your iPhone or iPad is backed up to iCloud or iTunes. This ensures that your data is safe in case there is any unforeseen issue.
Via OTA update
- Ensure that your device has at least 50% battery capacity and is connected to WiFi.
- Navigate to Settings > General > Software Update wait for the new update to show.
- Tap on Download and Install. The update will take some time to download, after which it will start installing. It might take some time, depending on your Internet connection speed and device mode.
Upgrade via iTunes
- Makes sure that you have the latest version of iTunes installed on your Windows PC or Mac.
- Connect your device to your computer via a USB cable, open iTunes and click on your device in the sidebar.
- Click Summary and click Check for Update button.
- When the update appears, click Download and Update. Enter your device passcode if asked.
iOS 12.1 Download Files (IPSW firmware)
Click on your device in the list below to download the relevant iOS 12.1 IPSW file. This file can be used to restore your device via iTunes.
- iPhone 5s
- iPhone SE
- iPhone 6
- iPhone 6 Plus
- iPhone 6s
- iPhone 6s Plus
- iPhone 7
- iPhone 7 Plus
- iPhone 8
- iPhone 8 Plus
- iPhone X
- iPhone XS
- iPhone XS Max
- iPhone XR
- iPod touch (6th generation)
- iPad mini 2
- iPad mini 3
- iPad mini 4
- iPad Air
- iPad Air 2
- 2017 iPad
- 2018 iPad
- iPad Pro (9.7‑inch)
- iPad Pro (10.5-inch)
- iPad Pro (12.9-inch, 1st gen)
- iPad Pro (12.9-inch, 2nd gen)