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|A version of the iOS operating system|
iOS 12 running on an iPhone X
|Source model||Closed with open-source components|
|Initial release||September 17, 2018|
|Latest release||12.1.4 (16D57) (February 7, 2019 ) [±]|
|Latest preview||12.2 Beta 6 (16E5227a) (March 18, 2019 ) [±]|
|Kernel type||Hybrid (XNU)|
|License||Proprietary software with open-source components|
|Preceded by||iOS 11|
iOS 12 is the twelfth and current major release of the iOS mobile operating system developed by Apple Inc., being the successor to iOS 11. It was announced at the company's Worldwide Developers Conference on June 4, 2018. It is similar in aesthetics to iOS 11 but contains numerous performance and battery life improvements and security updates, in addition to added functionalities within native applications. It was released to the public on September 17, 2018.
iOS 12 was introduced by Craig Federighi at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference keynote address on June 4, 2018. The first developer beta version was released after the keynote presentation, with the first public beta releasing three weeks after on June 25, 2018.
iOS 12.0.1 was released on October 8, 2018, as the first update to iOS 12.
iOS 12.1 was released on October 30, 2018. The update included new emoji, the Group FaceTime feature, L3/R3 button support for MFi controllers, updates to the Measure app, and the ability to use an eSIM on the iPhone XS Max, iPhone XS, and iPhone XR. 
iOS 12.1.1 was released on December 5, 2018.
iOS 12.1.3 was released on January 22, 2019, and featured important bug fixes.
Performance optimizations were made in order to speed up common tasks across all supported iOS devices. Tests done by Apple on an iPhone 6 Plus showed apps launching 40 percent faster, the system keyboard activating 50 percent faster, and the camera opening 70 percent faster.
Screen Time is a new feature in iOS 12 that records the amount of time a user spent on the device. The feature also displays the amount of time the user used particular apps, the amount of time the user used particular categories of apps (such as games), and the number of notifications the user received.
Screen Time also provides blocking features to limit usage of apps (with time limits) or set other restrictions such as on purchases or explicit content. It replaces Parental Controls in the iOS Settings app, but can also be used by adults to limit their own usage. These features can be used with or without a passcode. Without setting a passcode, the limits can easily be bypassed but may serve as a useful reminder of usage goals.
A dedicated application in iOS 12 allows users to set up Shortcuts, automated actions that the user can ask Siri to perform. It replaces the Workflow app that Apple acquired in March 2017.
The Voice Memos and Stocks apps are now available for iPads.
Control Center is separated from the app switcher on iPad and can be opened with a swipe down on the top right corner. In addition, iPhone X-style gestures are introduced across all iPads running iOS 12.
For devices with gesture navigation and no home button (iPhone X and later), users can now force quit applications by swiping up from the bottom of the screen (without having to press and hold on them when in the app switcher).
Messages in iOS 12 introduces a new type of customizable Animoji called "Memoji" which allows a user to create a 3D character of themselves. Apple also introduced Koala, Tiger, Ghost and T-Rex Animojis. In addition, Apple added new text and GIF effects similar to those found on other social media applications.
iOS 12.1, released on October 30, 2018, adds the ability to include up to 32 people in a FaceTime conversation. This feature is only supported with video by devices with the Apple A8X or Apple A9 chip or later; it is only supported for audio on iPhone 5S, iPhone 6, and iPhone 6 Plus, and is not available at all on iPad Mini 2, iPad Mini 3, and iPad Air. Group FaceTime was disabled on January 28, 2019 due to a software bug that allowed calls to be answered by the caller rather the recipient, allowing video and audio to transmitted unless the call was declined. The functionality was restored on February 7, 2019 with the release of iOS 12.1.4. Group FaceTime remains disabled on devices running earlier versions of iOS 12. (It never was available on versions prior to iOS 12.)
Apple Photos has been completely redesigned with four new tabs, including "Photos", "For You", "Albums", and "Search". The new "For You" tab replaces the "Memories" tab previously found in iOS 11 and makes sharing recommendations, creates short length video collages, photo editing suggestions, as well as featured photos from a specific day. While the "Photos" and "Albums" tabs received only a few cosmetic changes, the "Search" tab includes new Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning features which show the user photos by place and categories (e.g. animals, cars, objects).
Notifications are now grouped by application and have a "manage" button to turn off notifications for that app or to deliver them quietly right from the notification center without having to go into the Settings application.
Do Not Disturb now has a feature called "Do Not Disturb During Bedtime" to automatically send notifications to history, send calls to voicemail (can be changed to Favorites/Repeated calls) and has a darker screen to assist sleep. However, if the user taps the screen (or when the user's wake time passes) notifications are shown. When Do Not Disturb is turned on, a new notification will show saying that notifications and calls will be silenced when active.
iBooks was renamed Apple Books, and the app was redesigned, with five new tabs, including "Reading Now", "Library", "Book Store", "Audio Books", and "Search". The new app design is similar to that of Apple Music, and has been praised for its simplicity in allowing users to easily navigate their book library.
Apple Maps has been rebuilt from the ground up by relying on first-party map data instead of using map data provided by third parties. This allows for more accurate directions and predictions on the fastest routes.
After a rainbow flag emoji with an interdictory sign over it appeared on Twitter, several users accused Apple of encouraging anti-LGBT attitudes. However, Emojipedia has clarified that this occurs when a user tweets the two emojis together and is not an intended feature. This can be used with other emojis as well.
How do you find your direction and level surfaces using your iPhone? With the built-in Compass app!
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