Apple releases macOS Catalina 10.15.2, iOS and iPadOS 13.three

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Enlarge / The 16-inch MacBook Pro from 2019

Samuel Axon

Apple has released software updates for nearly its entire product range at the same time – including iOS 13.3, iPadOS 13.3, macOS Catalina 10.15.2, watchOS 6.1.1, tvOS 13.3 – and an update for HomePods. All updates should be available to all users by the end of the day.

iOS 13.3 and iPadOS 13.3 together make the most notable update. They introduce another feature that was originally released by Apple as part of iOS 13, but was delayed prior to the release of the annual update in September of this year: Communication limitations in ScreenTime. Parents can now whitelist contacts for their children's accounts, which can prevent their children from communicating with people outside the list of Apple-created apps, such as Messages and FaceTime, except for emergency calls and services such as 911.

These two updates will also introduce new layouts for specific releases in Apple News +, add a new UI to refuse or dismiss messages in News, and expand the news options and coverage in the Stocks app.

macOS Catalina 10.15.2 delivers most of these news and stock features, as well as the ability to restore the column browser view in Apple Music and support for Apple Remote apps for music and TV apps on Macs.

In addition, tvOS 13.3 is a notable update for current Apple TV streaming boxes. It includes a slight redesign of the video preview home screen as well as a change to the top content area displayed on this screen. While the next items in your TV app queue were previously displayed while this app was selected, new content is now recommended by showing Trailer and Preview. However, an option has been added to the settings that will allow you to return to the old path.

Today's HomePod update improves speech recognition for family members and "allows individual family members to enable / disable personal requests". watchOS 6.1.1 is a small update that contains unspecified bugfixes and optimizations. Apple has also released a security update for watchOS 5 for users who do not have an iPhone running iOS 13, as watchOS 6 requires the latest iPhone software.

All of today's updates also include a variety of bug fixes and security updates for each platform, which can be found in the following Apple release notes.

Release Notes for iOS and iPadOS 13.3

iOS 13.3 includes enhancements, bug fixes, and additional parental controls for screen time.

Screen Time

  • New parental controls provide more communication restrictions for those who can call their children (FaceTime or Message).
  • The children contact list allows parents to manage the contacts displayed on their children's devices.

Apple News

  • New Layout for Apple News + Articles from the Wall Street Journal and other leading newspapers
  • Just like or dislike stories with a tap of a finger

Stocks

  • Apple News stories are now available in English and French in Canada
  • Continue reading with links to related or other articles from the same publication.
  • Breaking and Developing Labels for Top Stories

This update also contains bug fixes and other improvements. This update:

  • Lets you create a new video clip when cropping a video in Photos
  • Adds support for NFC, USB, and Lightning FIDO2-compatible security keys in Safari.
  • Fixes emails that can prevent new messages from being downloaded.
  • Fixes an issue that prevented deleting messages in Gmail accounts.
  • Fixes issues that may cause messages to display incorrect characters and duplicate sent messages in Exchange accounts.
  • Fixes a problem where the cursor may not move after long-pressing the spacebar.
  • Fixes an issue where screen shots may appear blurry when sent over messages.
  • Fixes an issue where cropping or using markup for screenshots may not be saved to photos.
  • Fixes an issue where voice notes may not be shared with other audio apps.
  • Fixes an issue where the missed call badge in the phone app may not be deleted.
  • Fixes an issue where the mobile data setting may be incorrectly displayed as disabled.
  • Fixes a problem that prevented deactivating the dark mode when Smart Invert was enabled.
  • Fixes a problem where some wireless chargers charge more slowly than expected.

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