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iOS 15.1 released – SharePlay and more finally added

iOS 15 launched last month, but although it brought plenty of changes, it didn’t come with the full suite of features promised at WWDC way back in June.

Apple has gone some way to addressing that now, putting iOS 15.1 (and iPadOS 15.1) live as a free update. This software version includes several new features in addition to some important bug fixes and security updates, so we’d recommend downloading it as soon as you can.

What’s new?

Perhaps the biggest addition is SharePlay, a flagship feature that makes FaceTime even more social. SharePlay allows users to show what’s on their screen or even sync up music and video content to watch with their friends. It’s a clear reaction to the pandemic-related increase in video conferencing and it’s a feature many users have been excited about. Read our guide to see how it works.

iOS 15.1 also brings support for ProRes, a super high-quality video format that can be captured by the iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max. Probably overkill for the average user, but a great addition for videographers and filmmakers.

Speaking of the Camera app, you can now turn off the somewhat annoying Auto Macro feature that switches to the Ultra Wide camera whenever you get close to an object. With the setting off, you can still take close-up macro photos, but will have to switch lenses manually.

The update also adds lossless audio for HomePod, the ability for US citizens to store vaccination records in the Wallet app, and a fix for the Unlock with Apple Watch feature that steps in when Face ID can’t be used.

How to update

To get iOS 15.1 or iPadOS 15.1, head to SettingsGeneral > Software Update. Then simply follow the instructions to download and install the update. If you have Automatic Updates enabled, you may find it has already been installed – in which case you’ll see a message stating that your device is up to date.