iOS 16.1 Beta 1 Features: What’s New

BY Sriansh

Published 15 Sep 2022

iOS 16.1

Apple released iOS 16.1 Beta 1 and iPadOS 16.1 Beta 2 to developers today. Since this is the first iOS 16.1 beta release, it packs several new features and changes. The update brings many features that were not a part of the iOS 16 stable release and changes such as Clean Energy Charging and Live Activities API. Here is everything new that we have found in iOS 16.1 Beta 1.

iOS 16.1 Beta 1 Features: What’s new

Table of contents:

Clean Energy Charging

First teased with iOS 6’s stable release, the Clean Energy Charging feature has been added to the iPhone with iOS 16.1 beta 1. The toggle to enable Clean Energy Charging has been added to the Battery section of the Settings app.

Using this feature, your iPhone will charge when there is lower carbon emission electricity available, reducing your carbon footprint. It comes enabled by default when you update to iOS 16.1, though it can be turned off if desired.

Matter Home Standard Support

Apple, during the WWDC 2022 keynote, announced that iOS will gain support for Matter Smart Home Standard support “later this year.” iOS 16.1 beta 1 adds a new “Matter Accessories” section to the Settings app suggesting Apple is preparing for the release of the upcoming smart home standard. 

For those unaware, Matter will enable users to use smart home accessories from different manufacturers to work seamlessly with iOS. For example, you currently can’t control Alexa-enabled devices through the Home app on your iPhone. After the Matter Smart Home Standard is available, you will be able to add and control all Matter-supported devices using any voice assistant or app. 

Opening up the section suggests that it will display all Matter accessories that have been added to a connected service. Apple, in the iOS 16.1 release notes, points out that all the Matter accessories will require a profile installed on your device. Additionally, Apple’s website currently lists several known issues with the Matter standard. 

Live Activities API

Live Activities iOS 16

During the iOS 16 beta, developers had access to the Live Activities API for testing purposes. This API is now available again through iOS 16.1. There are no apps that support Live Activities for iPhone users at the moment, but developers can begin implementing the feature. Users will be able to see Live Activities on their iPhone once iOS 16.1 stable version is released and developers update their apps with the new feature.

Ability to Delete Wallet App

As previously rumored, Apple has added the ability to delete the Wallet app in iOS 16.1. While the app could be removed from the Home Screen before iOS 16.1, it couldn’t be deleted altogether. With the latest iOS beta build, the Wallet app can now be deleted entirely for those who do not want to use Apple Pay or other Wallet features.

The exact reason behind this isn’t known right now, though some predict that it could be due to the lawsuit Apple is facing in the violation of antitrust as Apple Pay‌ the only available mobile wallet for tap-to-pay payments on ‌iPhone‌.

Battery Percentage on More iPhones

iOS 16 Beta 5 Battery Percent

iOS 16 brought battery percentage in the status bar to many iPhone models. However, iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 13 mini, iPhone XR, and iPhone 11 did not receive the feature. Apple was unclear why the feature is not available on these iPhones. Thankfully, the feature is now available on all of these iPhones. The option to enable battery percentage in the status bar is available in Settings → Battery → Battery Percentage.

Tweaked Screenshot UI

Apple has slightly tweaked the screenshot UI with iOS 16.1. Earlier, when you pressed “Done” after clicking a screenshot, a pop-up to delete the screenshot, copy and delete, and save it to the Photos app appeared from the bottom. But now, the option appears in the upper left corner above the “Done” button. The updated interface definitely makes the screenshot tool easier to use. 

Lock Screen Customization Changes

One of the key features of iOS 16 is the new customizable Lock Screen. You can now add widgets, change the font, and do much more with the Lock Screen to make it look more personal. In iOS 16.1 beta 1, Apple has updated the customization screen wherein the tool now shows both the Lock Screen and the Home Screen, rather than just the Lock Screen. This change simplifies the customization process for iPhone users, eliminating the need for multiple steps.

Other Changes

  • iPadOS 16.1 Beta 2 brings new features to the Stage Manager (via Twitter):
    • The button to add more windows to a Stage now works as expected.
    • You can now use the dock icon or use the Globe-Down hotkey to see all the open windows for a particular app.
    • You can now drag windows from the iPad to an external display with Stage Manager.
  • In the Music app, headphones are represented by a larger icon.
  • The “Allow finding by friends” option has been added to the Game Center settings.
  • The Shared iCloud Photo Library has been added back in iOS 16.1. Now you can share your photos and move between your personal and shared libraries.

Have you installed the latest iOS 16.1 beta 1 on your iPhone? How’s your experience been? Have you noticed other changes in iOS 16.1 Beta 1 that aren’t listed here? Drop a comment down below and share them with us.

[Images via: MacRumors, 9to5Mac]