Apple is testing iOS 17.4 with a select group of iPhone users, which means we’re learning more about the new features arriving in the coming weeks.
One small, but significant change to proceedings will make one of the iPhone’s oldest apps a little more useful.
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It’ll also be available as one of the Live Activities options on the lock screen, along with the ability to pause and restart. This might be handy for runners, for instance, who want to keep tabs on their progress without venturing back into the Clock app.
This has been available for the countdown Timer for the last year or so, but strangely Apple hasn’t added the stopwatch until now. iOS 17.4 will rectify that and with it will solve a little iPhone anomaly experienced by most users at some point. A lot of times you’ll enter the Stopwatch portion of the Clock app and see one that’s been running since god-knows-when.
At least with it available on the Live Activities you’ll remember to stop and reset it when you’ve grilled the burgers on the other side for a few minutes.
Elsewhere in iOS 17.4, Apple is adding auto-generated transcripts in the Podcasts app, and the ability to add an additional Siri language for reading messages aloud. The company is tweaking the Stolen Device Protection security feature launched in iOS 17.3, while there are 118 new emoji coming your way too.
In the EU there’s a shift change coming pertaining to the App Store and the means of downloading apps, but that won’t affect UK users.