Multiple people can work on the same Freeform document, with updates synced for all participants in real-time. Apple says that Freeform can be used for sketching projects, designing mood boards, and brainstorming ideas, with the app serving as a creative space.
Stage Manager External Display Support
With iPadOS 16.2, Stage Manager on M1 and M2 iPads can be used with external displays once again. This is functionality that Apple removed in the first version of iPadOS 16 in order to expand Stage Manager to A12X and A12Z iPad Pro models.
With external display support, Stage Manager supports up to eight apps for multitasking purposes, rather than four. This functionality is limited to M1 and M2 iPads.
New Home App Architecture
Paired with HomePod 16.2 software, iOS 16.2, iPadOS 16.2, and macOS Ventura 13.1 add support for an updated Home app architecture that comes following the addition of the Matter smart home standard.
Apple says that the new Home app architecture will bring faster, more reliable performance in homes with many smart accessories, but it requires every device that accesses the home to be running the iOS 16.2, iPadOS 16.2, macOS Ventura 13.1, tvOS 16.2, and watchOS 9.2 betas, along with the HomePod 16.2 beta software.
On devices that support ProMotion, Apple says that SwiftUI animated layout changes will support a 120Hz refresh rate, functionality that was previously missing.
Unintentional SOS Calls
Apple appears to be collecting data on accidental SOS calls with the update, and one user has reported an Apple inquiry about the call that collects system data.
Apple has made a small tweak to the Software Updates section of the Settings app, which is available under General. The text of the software version that’s installed is now bolder, making it more apparent.
Other New Features
Know of a new feature in iOS 16.2 that we left out? Let us know in the comments below.