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App Tracking Transparency will be part of iOS 14.5, iPadOS 14.5 and tvOS 14.5. It’s already showing up in betas.
Developers get to say when the feature goes live. But there's a catch.
Graphic: Cult of Mac

Identify any song in an instant using Control Center [Pro tip]

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Identify a song with Control Center
And follow along with real-time lyrics.
Image: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

Control Center Pro Tips WeekWe want to help you master Control Center, one of the most powerful and underutilized features on Apple devices. Cult of Mac’s Control Center Pro Tips series will show you how to make the most of this useful toolbox on iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch and Mac.

When you’re listening to a song you dig, but you have no idea of its name or the artist who recorded it, you can use Control Center on your iPhone or iPad to identify the track in an instant.

It’s the simplest way to invoke Shazam, the powerful music-recognition tool built into iOS, aside from asking Siri to name that tune (which you probably don’t want to do in certain situations). We’ll show you how.

Why Apple Watch’s iPhone unlock changes your freakin’ face-mask life

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Why Apple Watch’s iPhone unlock will change your freakin’ life
Being able to to unlock your iPhone while wearing a face mask is the best reason yet to get an Apple Watch.
Photo: Ivan Samkov/Pexels CC

iOS 14.5 is the best update of the pandemic era because it works with your Apple Watch to remove the hassle of unlocking your iPhone while wearing a face mask. You don’t have to type in your passcode every single damn time. The phone just unlocks. Like it’s supposed to.

But the trick does require an Apple Watch. If you’ve been on the bubble about getting one, this feature should go a long way toward convincing you. It serves as yet another elegant example of how Apple’s ecosystem offers users simple solutions to modern life’s annoyances.

New iOS 14.5 emoji will set your heart on fire [Updated]

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Look forward to some fun new emoji in iOS 14.5.
The release of iOS 14.5 gives iPhone and iPad users access to some fun new emoji.
Photo: Emojipedia/Cult of Mac

The fresh emoji appearing in iOS 14.5 will set your heart afire. Or at least let you show that in texts. The new collection of pictographs also includes some new faces, and plenty of additional variations to show how we couple up in the 21st century.

iPad users get the same emoji thanks to iPadOS 14.5 and macOS 11.3, which also launched on Monday.

How to stop apps from tracking you in iOS 14.5

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How to allow/prevent apps tracking you
Thanks to App Tracking Transparency in iOS 14.5, it’s up to your to decide whether third-party applications track you.
Graphic: Cult of Mac

iPhone and iPad just got a significant new privacy protection, preventing third-party apps from tracking you without permission. App Tracking Transparency debuted in iOS 14.5 and iPadOS 14.5.

Here’s how to use it. And what to do about all the popups asking, “Allow [THIS APP] to track your activity?”