Fun new emoji and HomeKit Secure Video debut in macOS Catalina update

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The Photos app gets a couple of new features in macOS Catalina 10.15.1.
The Photos app gets a couple of new features in macOS Catalina 10.15.1.
Photo: Apple

Just a few weeks after the debut of macOS Catalina, Apple already has an update with features that had been planned for the original version.

On the list of enhancements are support for additional emoji, the just-launched AirPods Pro, HomeKit Secure Video and more.

macOS 10.15 launched Oct. 7. Today’s update is macOS 10.15.1. It includes all the changes made in the earlier version, including support for Apple Arcade, Sidecar, and the breakup of iTunes.

The latest version also offers 70 new or updated emoji, all of which debuted earlier in iOS 13 and iPadOS 13. These add more diversity to characters along with new animals, foods, activities and smiley faces.

macOS 10.15.1 also brings desktop and laptop users access to HomeKit Secure Video, tech that makes video security systems more private and secure, with some compatible hardware already announced. Support for HomeKit-enabled routers is built in too.

After the kurfuffle this summer about quality-assurance personnel listening to Siri recordings, the new version 10.15.1 gives users the option to opt into this program, rather than making it mandatory.

macOS Catalina 10.15.1 release notes

This new version includes an array of smaller tweaks. These are spelled out in the release notes from Apple’s support website:

“The macOS Catalina 10.15.1 update includes updated and additional emoji, support for AirPods Pro, HomeKit Secure Video, HomeKit-enabled routers, and new Siri privacy settings, as well as bug fixes and improvements.

Emoji

  • Over 70 new or updated emoji, including animals, food, activities, new accessibility emoji, gender-neutral emoji, and skin tones selection for couple emoji

AirPods support

  • AirPods Pro support

Home app

  • HomeKit Secure Video enables you to privately capture, store, and view encrypted video from your security cameras and features people, animal, and vehicle detection
  • HomeKit enabled routers let you control how your HomeKit accessories communicate over the internet or in your home
  • Adds support for AirPlay 2-enabled speakers in scenes and automations

Siri

  • Privacy settings to control whether or not to help improve Siri and Dictation by allowing Apple to store audio of your Siri and Dictation interactions
  • Option to delete your Siri and Dictation history from Siri Settings

This update also includes the following bug fixes and improvements:

  • Restores the ability to view file names in the All Photos view in Photos
  • Restores the ability to filter by favorites, photos, videos, edited, and keywords in Days view in Photos
  • Fixes an issue where Messages would only send a single notification when the option to repeat alerts was enabled
  • Resolves an issue that caused Contacts to launch to the previously opened contact instead of the contact list
  • Adds a two-finger swipe gesture for back navigation in Apple News
  • Resolves issues that may occur in the Music app when displaying playlists inside folders and newly added songs in the Songs list
  • Improves reliability of migrating iTunes library databases into the Music, Podcasts, and TV apps
  • Fixes an issue where downloaded titles were not visible in the Downloads folder in the TV app

Enterprise content

  • When using the built-in keyboard with a non-U.S. keyboard layout, passwords with certain characters are no longer rejected at the Mac login window.
  • When sign in with Apple ID is not allowed by a configuration profile, the Sign In button in System Preferences is now dimmed.”

Source: Apple