Apple has today released iOS 11.2, which brings a number of fixes; enhancements; and changes for blind and low vision users.
This release appears to have been rushed out by Apple to address a rather nasty bug related to some notifications generated after 12:15 a.m. local time on December 2 causing devices to enter a soft reset loop. AppleInsider has more on this bug.
- When using a braille display or braille keyboard for text input, the translator now recognizes all characters if you type quickly.
- Braille focus and jumping issues appear to be resolved.
- The Braille Screen Input cursor is now placed in the correct location in text views.
- Braille focus will now follow finger when touching in iBooks.
- Siri voices will no longer be deleted when downloaded for VoiceOver usage.
- There is once again a sound effect played when using the volume up/down buttons to change the volume level.
- Prices preceded by the British Pound symbol are now Spoken Correctly by VoiceOver.
- On the Mini Player in the native Music app, VoiceOver once again reads the name of the currently selected device on the “Audio Destination” button.
- After performing a search in the App Store, VoiceOver will no longer behave as if the list of trending searches is present and accessible at the end of the list of search results.
- Smart Invert now works in the Control Center.
- The incoming call screen has improved support of Invert Colors.
- The app review interface is now accessible with VoiceOver for rating apps inline.
- The Apple TV remote in Control Center has VoiceOver improvements.
- Stand hours in the Activity app are now announced correctly by VoiceOver.
- Heart rate data in the native Health app is now spoken correctly by VoiceOver.
- The iOS Item Chooser appears to be working correctly again.
- In the Phone app, you can once again use the VoiceOver Actions rotor to paste telephone numbers in to the text field.
- Movement of VoiceOver focus when swiping through a story in the native News app is more consistent and reliable.
- In the native Files app, there no longer appear to be occasions when the “Delete” option would be listed twice in the VoiceOver Actions Rotor.
- In the App Store, locating the “My Account” button is more reliable when swiping, making the movement of VoiceOver focus behave as expected.
- In the native Contacts app, locating your own contact card in the list view is more reliable when swiping, making the movement of VoiceOver focus behave as expected.
- If a bluetooth keyboard supports a "Home button" key, it should now work with VoiceOver again.
- The graphic on the settings page for Emergency SOS now has a VoiceOver label.
- There appear to be improvements to how VoiceOver handles math formulas on web pages.
- There no longer appear to be occasions when playback of audio will break-up and crackle; and require VoiceOver to be turned off and back on again to restore normal audio output.
- The Siri voices appear to be much more responsive when used with VoiceOver.
- The completeness of VoiceOver recognition of text in images appears to have been improved.
- Text recognition in images now works regardless of Screen Curtain or brightness settings.
- VoiceOver now attempts to recognize the text of unlabeled buttons in apps—presenting this information as "possible text."
- Audio destination will now only appear in the VoiceOver Rotor for AirPlay routes. This Rotor item can be enabled/disabled in Settings.
Our testing suggests that iOS 11.2 introduces no new bugs for VoiceOver or braille users. However, as we always stress, we are only a small team, so it is simply impossible for us to test all devices, configurations, applications, and use cases. It is possible, therefore, that there are additional fixes, changes or regressions in iOS 11.2 that we are currently unaware of. We will update this post if we learn of anything else. In the meantime, please let us know in the comments of any fixes, enhancements or regressions that you find in your own testing of this release.
Other Changes of Note in iOS 11.2
- Users in the US can now make person-to-person payments via Apple Pay. This Apple support page provides information on how to setup and use this service.
- Adds support for faster 7.5W wireless charging on iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X.
- Adds a pop-up in the Control Center to explain what happens when you turn wi-fi or bluetooth off.
- iOS 11.2 will support Apple's new HomePod speaker.
According to AppleInsider, iOS 11.2 includes the following fixes:
Beyond the date bug, Apple built in a host of fixes for first-party apps including a resolution to a Mail issue that could cause the app to appear to be checking for new messages even when a download is complete. Another issue caused cleared Mail notifications from Exchange accounts to reappear.
Other bugs addressed by iOS 11.2 include an issue where Settings could open to a blank screen, a problem that prevented swiping to Today View or Camera from the Lock Screen and an issue preventing Music controls from showing up on the Lock Screen. Apple also remedied hiccups associated with VoiceOver, Calculator, Find My iPhone and iCloud. General stability improvements to Calendar and the soft keyboard are also included.
iOS 11.2 is available via Over-the-Air Update (Settings > General > Software Update) or via iTunes on a Mac or PC.