In addition to releasing important security updates for all its operating systems on June 1, Apple released the first beta of iOS and iPadOS 13.5.5. A week later, the second beta was released, along with a new version number—it has now been updated to iOS and iPadOS 13.6, signifying more significant new features.
Update 07/15/20: Apple has made the final release of iOS 13.6 available to everyone.
What’s new in iOS 13.6
Apple News+ includes professionally narrated versions of some stories. You’ll also find an Apple News Today daily audio briefing of top stories.
Automatic updates control
New in iOS and iPadOS 13.6 is finer control over automatic OS updates. Instead of a single toggle, you now have two. You can choose to only download OS updates but not install them, or to download them and install them overnight (provided your device is charging and connected to Wi-Fi).
Though Apple first demonstrated its support for a new electronic car key format as part of iOS 14, it’s actually coming earlier than that, in iOS 13.6.
iOS 13.6 release notes
The complete release notes for iOS 13.6 are as follows:
iOS 13.6 adds support for digital car keys, introduces audio stories in Apple News+, and contains a new symptoms category in the Health app. This release also includes bug fixes and improvements.
Digital car keys – Unlock, lock, and start your compatible car with your iPhone – Securely remove digital keys from a lost device via iCloud – Share digital keys easily with iMessage – Driver-specific profiles so you can configure shared keys for full-access or restricted driving – Power reserve lets you unlock and start your car for up to five hours after iPhone runs out of battery
Apple News – Audio stories are professionally narrated versions of some of the best reads from Apple News+, selected and produced by the Apple News editors as part of your Apple News+ subscription – Apple News Today is a new, free audio briefing on the day’s top stories from the Apple News editors, also available in the Podcasts app – A new Audio tab makes it easy to find Apple News Today and Apple
News+ audio stories – CarPlay allows you to listen to Apple News Today and Apple News+ audio stories while on the road – Local news in your Today feed provides extensive coverage of San Francisco, the Bay Area, Los Angeles, Houston, and New York City – More stories available from local news providers with a subscription to Apple News+ – Your daily newsletter from Apple News can now be personalized with stories that reflect your interests
Health – New category for symptoms in the Health app, including symptoms logged from Cycle Tracking and ECG – Ability to log new symptoms, like fever, chills, sore throat or coughing, and share them with third-party apps
This update also includes bug fixes and other improvements. – Adds a new setting to choose if updates automatically download to your device when on Wi-Fi – Addresses an issue that could cause apps to become unresponsive when syncing data from iCloud Drive – Fixes an issue that could cause data roaming to appear to be disabled on eSIM even though it remained active – Fixes an issue thats causes some phone calls from Saskatchewan to appear as originating from the United States – Addresses an issue that could interrupt audio when making phone calls over Wi-Fi Calling – Fixes an issues that prevented some iPhone 6S and iPhone SE devices from registering for Wi-Fi Calling – Resolves an issue that could cause the software keyboard to appear unexpectedly when connected to certain third-party hardware keyboards – Fixes an issue that could cause Japanese hardware keyboards to be incorrectly mapped as a U.S. keyboard – Addresses stability issues when accessing Control Center when Assistive Touch was enabled – Provides a mechanism for administrators to specify domains to exclude from traffic carried by always-on VPN connections
How to get iOS 13.6
To download iOS 13.6 on your iPhone, open the Settings app and tap General, then Software Update.
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I have written professionally about technology for my entire adult professional life - over 20 years. I like to figure out how complicated technology works and explain it in a way anyone can understand.