iOS 14 beta 4 adds TV widget, fixes bugs [Updated]


iOS 14 Beta 4 makes it easier to watch TV on your iPad
Just tap on the Apple TV widget to jump to your favorite shows in iPadOS 14.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

A highlight of iOS 14 beta 4 is a TV widget on the Home screen, giving users easy access to shows in the Apple TV app. And the Weather widget returns for iPad users, among a handful of other tweaks.

Apple released the public beta Thursday after seeding it to developers earlier this week.

What’s new in iOS 14 beta 4

iOS 14 beta 4 boasts an Apple TV widget that can be placed on the Home screen of iPhones or iPads. It links to the Up Next section of the Apple TV app, which includes content from a variety of streaming services. As such, it’s more than just an advertisement for the Apple TV+ subscription service.

Also, until the developer beta arrived Tuesday, the Apple/Google COVID-19 exposure tracking tool introduced in iOS 13 hadn’t yet made the jump to iOS 14.

So far, there don’t seem to be any other new features of note. But the fact that there are still features being added shows that the release of iPadOS 14 and the iPhone equivalent are still a long way a way.

iOS 14 beta 4 fixes bugs from earlier betas

The development process for a new operating system version doesn’t always go smoothly. In addition to fixing problems that have been around since the first beta, some of the enhancements in the latest version are fixes to problems introduced by the previous one.

iOS 14 and the iPad equivalent promise significant improvements to the global search feature. However, iOS 14 beta 3 stopped showing in-app searches correctly. Beta 4, released Tuesday to developers, fixes this issue.

And 3D Touch is back on iPhones that support this feature. Plus the Weather widget returns for iPads.

Also, iPad users were having trouble with Apple Notes. But this is fixed. “The pen tools no longer activate unexpectedly while typing with a Bluetooth keyboard. (65005033),” according to Apple.

These serve as reminders that beta teasing has drawbacks. It’ll be months before the final version of iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 are introduced, and the current pre-release versions are full of problems.

Anyone can try the public beta

The final versions of iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 should arrive this autumn with new iPhones. If you want to try them early, sign up for the free Apple Beta Software Program

Note: We originally published this post on Aug. 4. We updated it when the public betas became available on Aug. 6.