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Apple Seeds Release Candidate Versions of iOS 17.4 and iPadOS 17.4 to Developers


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Apple today seeded release candidates of upcoming iOS 17.4 and iPadOS 17.4 to developers for testing purposes, with the updates coming one week after Apple seeded the fourth betas. The RCs are the final versions of the software that will be released to the public next week so long as no bugs are found during this final testing process.

iOS-17.4-Feature-Orange.jpg
Registered developers are able to opt into the betas by opening up the Settings app, going to the Software Update section, tapping on the "Beta Updates" option, and toggling on the iOS 17 or iPadOS 17 Developer Beta. A free or paid Apple ID associated with a developer account is required to download and install the beta.

iOS 17.4 introduces sweeping changes to the way the App Store and apps operate in the European Union, paving the way for alternative app marketplaces, alternative payment systems, third-party browser engine support, and NFC access for banks and third-party payment providers. These features are limited to the EU, and won't be available in other countries.

There are, however, changes to gaming apps, and with the launch of iOS 17.4, Apple will be allowing cloud gaming apps like Xbox Cloud Gaming and Nvidia GeForce NOW. Mini games, chatbots, and plug-ins are also now able to use the in-app purchase system. Along with these updates, iOS 17.4 adds new emoji characters, transcripts for podcasts in the Podcasts app, support for using SharePlay with the HomePod, Stopwatch Live Activities, and more. Apple's release notes for the update are below.
Emoji
- New mushroom, phoenix, lime, broken chain, and shaking heads emoji are now available in the emoji keyboard
- 18 people and body emoji add the option to face them in either direction

Apple Podcasts
- Transcripts let you follow an episode with text that highlights in sync with the audio in English, Spanish, French and German
- Episode text can be read in full, searched for a word or phrase, tapped to play from a specific point and used with accessibility features such as Text Size, Increase Contrast, and VoiceOver

This update includes the following enhancements and bug fixes:
- Music recognition lets you add songs you have identified to your Apple Music Playlists and Library, as well as Apple Music Classical
- Siri has a new option to announce messages you receive in any supported language
- Stolen Device Protection supports the option for increased security in all locations
- Battery Health in Settings shows battery cycle count, manufacture date, and first use on iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Pro models
- Call Identification displays Apple-verified business name, logo, and department name when available
- Business updates in Messages for Business provide trusted information for order status, flight notifications, fraud alerts or other transactions you opt into
- Apple Cash virtual card numbers enable you to pay with Apple Cash at merchants that don't yet accept Apple Pay by typing in your number from Wallet or using Safari AutoFill
- Fixes an issue where contact pictures are blank in Find My
- Fixes an issue for Dual SIM users where the phone number changes from primary to secondary and is visible to a group they have messaged
Some features may not be available for all regions or on all Apple devices. For information on the security content of Apple software updates, please visit this website: https://support.apple.com/kb/HT201222
Full details on everything new in iOS 17.4 can be found in our iOS 17.4 features guide.
This article, "Apple Seeds Release Candidate Versions of iOS 17.4 and iPadOS 17.4 to Developers" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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