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Hands on with iOS 7.1: A few good improvements

Michael deAgonia | March 17, 2014
Apple's latest upgrade to its mobile operating system, iOS 7.1, adds some useful touches and fixes some of the glitches that appeared in the previous version.

Speaking of Siri, the technology now supports more natural-sounding voices for a few additional languages, including Australian and UK English, Mandarin Chinese, and Japanese.

iBeacon support is improved, too. An app no longer has to be running (or opened in the background) to receive Beacon notifications; messages will still be received in the lock screen even if you recently restarted your phone and didn't bother to open up the app. Apple has added CarPlay support, which lets you control your iPhone on a built-in display — assuming your car is equipped with it.

Lastly, you can delete cached software updates from Usage under Settings; previously, you would have to restart the iPhone/iPad and then initiate the check update.

As you can see, none of these changes is earth-shattering, but most are nice details that add up when you're using your device on a daily basis — and in my day-to-day routine, 7.1 didn't use the battery any more or less than 7.0.x. The refinements, bug fixes, the fact that it's free and overall improvements make 7.1 an easy update to recommend.


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