Apple's Big Update Day Covers iOS, WatchOS, tvOS, OS X - InformationWeek

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12/9/2015
02:21 PM
Eric Zeman
Eric Zeman
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Apple's Big Update Day Covers iOS, WatchOS, tvOS, OS X

Apple has pushed new versions of its core operating systems to the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, Apple TV, and Mac computers.

10 iPhone, iPad Apps Optimized For iOS 9
10 iPhone, iPad Apps Optimized For iOS 9
(Click image for larger view and slideshow.)

Apple updated pretty much all of its devices this week with new builds of iOS, watchOS, tvOS, and OS X. The refreshed operating systems mostly fix bugs and smooth out performance, but a few new features are buried within.

iOS 9.2 has been in beta testing for the better part of a month. The official release stamps out a number of bugs. As far as new features are concerned, Apple took the opportunity to tweak Apple Music. The streaming music service is easier to use when making playlists, saving music offline, and browsing through classical music.

Apple rehashed its News app as well, and created a new Top Stories section that highlights the most important stories of the day. Last, iOS 9.2 fixes Mail Drop in the email app to accommodate larger attachments. iOS 9.2 for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch can be downloaded over the air.

The Apple Watch gains new powers thanks to watchOS 2.1. The biggest improvement to the platform is the addition of new languages. For example, the platform now speaks Arabic, Czech, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Malay, Portuguese, and Vietnamese. Apple's wearable operating system now supports a right-to-left user interface with the appropriate language, and Siri will understand each of the new dialects. The update resolves bugs pertaining to calendar updates and third-party apps. WatchOS 2.1 needs to be installed through an iPhone and requires the wearable to have at least a 50% charge.

(Image: AleksandarNakic/iStockphoto)

(Image: AleksandarNakic/iStockphoto)

Apple's brand-new TV companion product received its first major update in tvOS 9.1. The most significant addition is that of Siri for Apple Music. Owners of the new Apple TV can now ask Siri to play the latest music from Adele, Coldplay, and other artists. The update also makes the Apple Remote app for iPhones/iPads function with the new Apple TV. Though the Apple TV ships with a remote of its own, people can now use their smartphone or tablet to control the device. Apple's tvOS 9.1 also makes a number of improvements to networking and scrolling behaviors.

[See the Top 5 iPhone 7 Rumors We're Following.]

Finally, Apple pushed out a new build of OS X El Capitan. The 10.11.2 system update for Macs chiefly resolves bugs and doesn't add any new features. For example, it improves the reliability of WiFi and Handoff/Airdrop, fixes an issue that caused Bluetooth devices to lose their connection, and fixes a problem in the Mail app that prevented users from deleting messages when they use it offline. The updated version of El Capitan also fixes some photo-related problems, including one issue preventing imports via USB and another issue related to iCloud Photo Sharing.

If you an Apple device, chances are an update is waiting for you.

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Eric is a freelance writer for InformationWeek specializing in mobile technologies. View Full Bio
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