Apple has today launched the latest version of its operating system, iOS 11 .4.
The update includes a range of new features including AirPlay 2, support for HomePod stereo pairs, and Messages in iCloud, as well as bug fixes and improvements.
To download the iOS 11.4 update, launch the Settings app, tap on General and scroll down to Software Update.
Tap on that, and follow the instructions on screen to download iOS 11.4.
It might be wise to back up your iPhone before installing the update.
The update includes AirPlay 2, which allows you to control your home audio system through your phone.
In a blog announcing the update, a spokesperson for Apple said: “While listening to music, it’s as easy as selecting or unselecting where the music is playing in Control Centre, or users can ask Siri to play music in any room, a group of rooms, or everywhere in the home.”
AirPlay 2 controls are available across iOS within any app and in Control Center for quick access to what’s playing in every room, on every speaker.
HomePod stereo pair
If you’re one of the few people who own a HomePod speaker, you’ll be happy to hear that with iOS 11.4 you can pair two HomePod units in the same room, allowing them to act as stereo speakers.
The Apple spokesperson explained: “With two HomePod speakers set up as a stereo pair, this soundstage gets even wider, delivering room-filling sound that is more spacious than a traditional stereo pair from a speaker that’s just under 7-inches tall.
“Using spatial awareness to sense their location in the room, each HomePod automatically adjusts the audio to sound great wherever it is placed and sound great together, using an Apple-designed wireless peer-to-peer direct link to communicate with each other and play music completely in sync.”
Messages in iCloud
With iOS 11.4, you can store your messages, photos and other attachments in iCloud, freeing up space on your devices.
When you sign in to a new device with the same iMessage account, all your messages will automatically disappear.
Thankfully, your conversations are end-to-end encrypted.
The update also includes a fix for the ‘black dot’ issue, which saw iPhones crashing when users sent a certain character sequence via Messages.
And an issue that prevented some users from logging in or accessing files on Google Drive, Google Docs and Gmail in Safari has also been addressed.
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