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All of Apple’s delayed iPhone features in iOS 17 have now been released

Published Jan 24th, 2024 11:14AM EST
iOS 17 review header: Personalized Contact Poster
Image: José Adorno for BGR

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Every major software release by Apple has delayed features, iOS 17 included. The operating system introduced during WWDC 2023 had several functions set to come later, including core features for iPhone users.

By the time Apple released iOS 17 in September 2023, there were 13 delayed features. Here is when each of them was made available:

With iOS 17.1, Apple added three delayed features:

Sharing contact information (NameDrop) via AirDrop between iPhone and Apple Watch.
Sharing contact information (NameDrop) via AirDrop between iPhone and Apple Watch. Image source: Apple Inc.
  • NameDrop from iPhone to Apple Watch: NameDrop is a feature that lets you easily share your contact information from one iPhone to another by approaching them. While this function was available with the release of iOS 17, Apple needed an extra period to add iPhone to Apple Watch integration.
  • AirDrop via Cellular connection: Did you ever start sending tons of photos at once via AirDrop to a friend, but one of you had to leave? With iOS 17.1, you can keep sending this data securely and with full quality over the internet if you leave the AirDrop range. It requires that both people are signed in to iCloud.
  • Favorite Songs in Music app: You can favorite songs, artists, and albums. They can be seen in a new Favorite section, which also helps improve the Music algorithm.

By December 11, iOS 17.2 added six iOS 17 delayed features:

iOS 17.2 beta Journal app
iOS 17.2 beta Journal app Image source: José Adorno for BGR
  • Journal app: Apple says this app lets you “capture your thoughts on life’s big events or everyday activities. Add details to any entry with photos, music, audio recordings, and more. Mark important moments and revisit them later to find new insights or set new goals.”
  • Catch-up arrow in the Messages app so you can easily go to the last message you saw;
  • The ability to react to a message with any sticker through the Tapback menu;
  • Play and pause podcasts or Apple News+ audio stories in the Apple News widget;
  • Intelligent form detection and enhanced AutoFill for PDFs (one of the most important features for iPadOS 17);
  • Audio Focus feature for Apple Fitness+ so you can prioritize the volume of the music or the trainers’ voice.

In addition, an exclusive iPhone 15 Pro feature, Spatial Video recording, was also added with this operating system update.

Then, with iOS 17.3 released on January 22, Apple finished adding the last delayed features expected for the iOS 17 cycle:

Apple Music Collaborative Playlists, react to a song featureImage source: José Adorno for BGR
  • Apple Music Collaborative Playlist: Invite friends to collaborate on playlists. They can add, reorder, and remove songs. In addition, you can react to the song choices in Now Playing.
  • AirPlay in your hotel room: AirPlay works in supporting hotel rooms. Apple is working closely with hotels so people can scan the QR code on their room TVs to securely share videos, photos, and music from their iPhones to the TV.

Two iOS 17 delayed features have been added, but Apple didn’t mention them

In Apple’s iOS 17 official guide, the company lists all the features available for iOS 17 users. In 2023, two of them were marked as coming “later this year,” and by 2024, the company had removed this information from these functions. That said, they were probably added during iOS 17.1 or iOS 17.2 beta cycle, but Apple didn’t include them in the release notes:

  • Sync additional settings with Messages in iCloud: Text Message Forwarding, Send & Receive accounts, and SMS filters across devices;
  • Apple ID proximity sign-in with an existing signed-in and trusted iPhone or iPad.

Wrap up

With iOS 17.4 just around the corner and iOS 18 set to be previewed in June 2024, Apple can finally move to new features.

For the upcoming software update, we expect Apple to add third-party apps sideloading to European users. New emojis could also be coming with this version. BGR will keep you posted as we learn more about iOS 17.4 and, eventually, iOS 18.

José Adorno Tech News Reporter

José is a Tech News Reporter at BGR. He has previously covered Apple and iPhone news for 9to5Mac, and was a producer and web editor for Latin America broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.

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