This morning saw the release of the third developer beta of the newly christened iOS 13.5 (formerly iOS 13.4.5), which will bring some welcome improvements designed for our current world situation.
Face ID will now reportedly detect when you’re wearing a mask, and though it will not recognize your face, it will pop up the passcode entry screen faster once it realizes that. (Personally, I would like to see a “simple four-digit passcode until I leave this location” option or something similar, for when I have to take my phone to the grocery store.)
Secondly, Apple is adding a toggle in iOS 13.5 allowing you to disable the “enlarge the face of the speaker” feature in Group FaceTime calls, which comes as a great relief to anybody who has used, and potentially become nauseated by, this feature. However, it’s not disabled by default (boo), so you’re still going to have to walk all your less tech-savvy relatives through how to turn this off.
iOS 13.5 will also include the first version of the new exposure notification API being jointly developed with Google to help track the spread of COVID-19 and alert you if you have encountered someone else who has reported being tested positive.
Naturally, this is pre-release software, which means all of these features are subject to change. This is the third beta of the 13.5 release, which will be available to the public at large sometime next month.