The Biggest New Features Coming To iOS 16

During its WWDC 2022 keynote, Apple introduced several major new features that will arrive on the company's mobile devices with the release of iOS 16 and iPadOS 16 later this year. Users can expect a number of major changes, including one of the most major visual upgrades to iOS in a while: lock screen widgets. Apple will roll out the new features and "experiences" across its broad app landscape, including changes in Maps, Apple Pay, News, and Messages.

As anticipated, the changes revolve around updated and expanded user experiences rather than a big OS design overhaul. That's not to say the changes are minor, however, as Apple has seemingly zeroed in on many of the smaller features that refine the entire mobile experience. Case in point: users can finally edit and "unsend" messages in the Apple Messages app. What other big changes can iPhone and iPad users expect?

Customizable lock screens

iOS 16 will include a redesigned lock screen that'll make it easier for iPhone and iPad users to see messages, sports updates, and more without unlocking their device. Among other things, users will be able to easily customize the look of the lock screen using built-in tools, including changing the font used for the clock, swapping out the background behind the subjects in the photo used as the lock screen wallpaper, and adding widgets to the lock screen for rapidly seeing snippets of key information, including weather and upcoming calendar events.

Apple's presentation gave a look at several of the lock screen widget options that will arrive with iOS 16, including Sun Events, a City Analog clock, and a Next Event calendar widget. Users can also add similar lock screen widgets that show their activity level, battery status, and their city's Light Forecast. In addition to the ability to change the clock's font, Apple revealed that the iOS 16 lock screen's clock will appear slightly behind people who may be featured in your wallpaper, plus users will be able to apply photo filters to that wallpaper directly from the lock screen's customization tools.

Other key lock screen changes include a photo shuffle mode for regular wallpaper changes, live weather wallpapers, notifications that "roll" into the bottom of the lock screen to avoid blocking the wallpaper, and a type of notification called Live Activities that Apple presents as particularly useful for sports fans.

Big new Message features

As mentioned, Messages is also getting some big changes in iOS 16, including the ability to edit a message you've already sent and the option to undo a sent message entirely. Users will likewise have the option to unread messages in the event they opened the latest message, read it, and then realized they don't have time to reply at that particular moment. These features are already offered by a number of dedicated messaging apps, and it'll be great to see them arrive in the next major version of Apple's mobile operating system.

Of particular interest is SharePlay, which will arrive in Messages with iOS 16. This feature will make it much easier for family and friends to enjoy the same content at the same time by offering them access to shared playback controls. Of course, users will be able to continue messaging each other within Messages while enjoying the shared content for a more social experience, as well.