First iOS 12.2 public beta boosts Downtime, Apple News

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iOS 12.2 public beta 1 is more than just a collection of bug fixes.
iOS 12.2 public beta 1 is more than just a collection of bug fixes.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

The first fairly significant update to iOS in months is available now for the general public to update. iOS 12.2 will have a scattering of new features, not just the bug fixes and tweaks in recent updates.

The end of beta testing for this version could bring new iPad and iPod models. And AirPods 2 as well.

Registered developers got their hands on iOS 12.2 beta 1 last week. Among the changes noted right off is support for Apple News for users in Canada. There’s also a new screen mirroring button in Control Center. 

In addition, this version allows users to set different Downtime schedules depending on the day of the week. This feature lets users periodically limit the number of apps they can access. The goal is to — hopefully — cut down on screen time. Different schedules for weekdays and weekends seems a logical addition.

Bring on the new devices

At least as important as any improvements to the functionality in iOS 12.2 are its references to future mobile devices. Most notably, buried in the code are mentions of two unreleased iPad models, one of which might be the iPad mini 5 that’s been the subject of recent rumors. There’s also a mention of the iPod touch 7.

In addition, there’s evidence in iOS 12.2 that the much-anticipated AirPods 2 will include “Hey Siri” support.

Get iOS 12.2 public beta 1 now

Anyone who’s feeling adventurous  can sign up for the Apple Beta Software Program and download the latest iOS pre-release version. It’s free and not overly complicated.