By the end of May, Apple released iOS 16.5. Just after that, the company seeded the first beta of iOS 16.6. This update could be the latest major iOS 16 update, as the company will unveil iOS 17 by the beginning of June during WWDC 2023. That said, here’s what Apple still has on its sleeve about this operating system update, which is currently in beta.
First and foremost, there are no visible changes on iOS 16.6. After a small iOS 16.5 update, Apple is sharpening its software.
In addition, iOS developer Steve Moser shared on his Twitter that Apple has added references for Contact Key Verification with the first beta build of iOS 16.6. It shows as a search result in Settings but is still inactive.
iOS 16.6 Beta 1 (20G5026e) changes 🧵: Apple is working on support for Contact Key Verification. It shows as a search result in Settings but isn’t active yet. CKV will ensure that users are iMessaging their intended recipient. pic.twitter.com/84sPN7IBRY
— Steve Moser (@SteveMoser) May 23, 2023
iMessage Contact Key Verification is a feature announced by the company at the end of 2022. While Apple has already rolled out Security Keys for Apple ID and Advanced Data Protection for iCloud during the iOS 16 cycle, the firm still had to release that other function.
For those unaware, iMessage Contact Key Verification lets users verify if they are communicating only with whom they intend. This is especially helpful for journalists, human rights activists, and government members.
Apple says that “conversations between users who have enabled iMessage Contact Key Verification receive automatic alerts if an exceptionally advanced adversary, such as a state-sponsored attacker, were ever to succeed breaching cloud servers and inserting their own device to eavesdrop on these encrypted communications. And for even higher security, iMessage Contact Key Verification users can compare a Contact Verification Code in person, on FaceTime, or through another secure call.”
As of now, it’s unclear if iOS 16.6 will bring this feature, but Apple has already started testing it. In addition, Steve Moser says Apple continues to work on Sports related features in the TV app, although he couldn’t disclose what’s new.
Apple is also beta testing iPadOS 16.6, watchOS 9.6, macOS 13.5, and tvOS 16.6. BGR will let you know throughout this beta cycle what’s new.