iOS 17 Logo
iOS 17 Logo

Apple’s iOS 17.4 is out now, bringing with it a host of new features that promise to enhance the iPhone experience for users around the globe. From more robust stolen device protection options to detailed battery health statistics, this update is poised to offer something for everyone. Whether you’re in Europe or elsewhere, the iOS 17.4 update has got you covered with its worldwide availability.

Users can enjoy new emojis to express themselves in more ways, alongside significant security enhancements, particularly to iMessage, fortifying the privacy of user communications.

New Features in iOS 17.4

App Store (EU)– Users can choose alternative app stores and install apps through them. – Developers can choose a new fee structure with a reduced commission or no commission for apps distributed through alternative stores.
Payment Options (EU)– Apps can now use alternative payment options within the app, no longer requiring in-app purchases.
Browsers (EU)– Users can choose a new default browser from a list of popular options. – Alternative browser engines are now allowed.
NFC Access (EEA)– Third-party payment apps and banks can access the iPhone’s NFC chip for contactless payments without using Apple Pay.
Web Apps (EU)– Home Screen Web Apps are still functional, but WebKit is required.
Gaming Apps (worldwide)– Streaming game apps like Xbox Cloud Gaming and Nvidia GeForce NOW are now allowed on the App Store.
New Emoji– Includes lime, mushroom, phoenix, broken chain, and shaking head emojis. – 18 people and body emojis can now face in both directions.
Messaging with Siri– Siri can send messages in multiple languages and read incoming messages in specific languages.
Podcasts– Podcasts app offers transcripts similar to Apple Music lyrics. – Podcasts use the Apple Music Now Playing bar when collapsed.
Music Recognition– Songs identified with music recognition can be added to playlists and libraries.
New iMessage Security Protocol– Introduces “PQ3” to protect against future “harvest now, decrypt later” attacks.
iPhone 15 Battery Health– Battery interface now shows a readout like “Normal” for quick at-a-glance status. – Tapping the readout reveals cycle count, manufacture date, and first use.
Stolen Device Protection– Option to require a security delay for unlocking even when near familiar locations.
Stopwatch Live Activity– Stopwatch shows up in Dynamic Island and Lock Screen when activated.
Call Identification– Displays Apple-verified business names, logos, and department names (when available).
Messages for Business– Businesses can provide opt-in information for transactions through Messages.
Apple TV App– “How to Watch” section now uses a list interface instead of cards.
App Store Purchase History– Shows all account-wide purchases (TV, movies, music, subscriptions, apps) in one place.
Clock Widget– New City Digital Clock widget can be added to Home Screen or Lock Screen.
Apple Cash Virtual Card Numbers– Generate virtual card numbers for purchases where Apple Pay isn’t accepted.
Budget App Integration– Third-party budget apps can access real-time information from Apple Card, Cash, and Savings accounts.
Hand Gesture Reactions (Video Apps)– Developers can now disable hand gesture reactions in video calls.
Hey Siri (More Languages)– Option to say “Siri” instead of “Hey Siri” in French, German, and Spanish.
CarPlay Instrument Cluster (supported vehicles)– Apple Maps shows upcoming turns in the instrument cluster.
Next-Generation CarPlay (coming later in 2024)– Code hints at new CarPlay apps for car camera, charging, climate, closures, media, tire pressure, trips, and a “Goodbye” screen.

Note: This table is not exhaustive and only includes a selection of the new features in iOS 17.4.

What’s New for Apple Users

iOS 17.4 brings a host of new features and improvements to enhance your iPhone and iPad experience. Here’s a breakdown of the key additions:

New Emoji

Express yourself with a fresh set of emoji characters, including:

  • Lime
  • Edible brown mushroom
  • Phoenix
  • Broken chain
  • Shaking heads (both vertical and horizontal variations)

Apple CarPlay Upgrades

Selected supported vehicles will offer a revamped CarPlay experience with iOS 17.4. This includes:

  • Instrument Cluster Integration: Apple Maps navigation will now appear directly in your vehicle’s instrument cluster.
  • Customization: Choose between different display types for your main screen and instrument cluster.

Apple Podcasts Enhancements

Enjoy new features within the Podcasts app:

  • Transcripts: Follow along with your favorite podcast episodes with synchronized text transcripts (available for English, Spanish, French, and German).
  • Full Text Search: Easily search for specific words or phrases spoken within an episode.
  • Accessibility Support: Utilize features like Text Size, Increase Contrast, and VoiceOver with transcripts.

Additional Improvements and Bug Fixes

iOS 17.4 also includes several smaller improvements and fixes:

Battery Health Details (iPhone 15 models)View battery cycle count, manufacture date, and first use.
Memoji Sticker UpdatesGet new Halo, Smirk, and Peekaboo stickers.
App Shortcuts in SpotlightSee app shortcuts directly in search results for quicker actions.
Sharing Tab Redesign (Fitness app)View your friends’ activity highlights.
Crash Detection Optimizations (iPhone 14 series)Refinements to crash detection accuracy.

Among the standout additions are the AirPlay improvements for hotel rooms and the Screen Distance feature in Screen Time, aimed at protecting your eyesight. These features, along with several bug fixes, are designed to make your iPhone more secure, user-friendly, and versatile. With the release candidate already in the hands of public beta testers and developers, anticipation is building for what’s to come.

iOS 17.4 also marks a pivotal update with respect to the Apple App Store in the EU, mirroring the company’s ongoing adjustments to comply with regional regulations. Another feature set to improve user accessibility is the introduction of Apple Podcasts transcripts, which aims to enrich the listening experience by allowing users to read along with their favorite episodes. These transcripts will also enable searching within podcasts for specific content, adding another layer to content discovery. The anticipation for iOS 17.4 is heightened by the expectation of further system optimizations that aim to boost overall performance and connectivity.

Key Takeaways

  • iOS 17.4 introduces significant enhancements in stolen device protection, including the option for biometric authentication to prevent unauthorized access and setting delays on important features when not in trusted locations.
  • The update offers improved battery health statistics, allowing users a deeper insight into their battery’s performance and tips on extending its life, aligning with Apple’s commitment to sustainability.
  • AirPlay improvements make hotel stays more enjoyable by allowing easy streaming to hotel TVs, and the new Screen Distance feature in Screen Time promotes healthier screen habits by encouraging users to maintain a safe distance from their screens.
  • iOS 17.4 addresses several bug fixes and enhancements to improve the security, performance, and overall user experience, with a focus on privacy protections against malicious web apps and smoother device operation.
  • The update’s focus on user well-being, device security, and environmental sustainability reflects Apple’s ongoing commitment to delivering valuable and conscientious software improvements to iPhone users.

Stolen Device Protection Enhancements

Apple’s iOS 17.4 update brings a big step forward in keeping iPhones safer with its Stolen Device Protection feature. This addition aims to make it tougher for anyone who shouldn’t have your phone to make changes to it. Now, users have the option to set up biometric authentication. This means that only your face or fingerprint can allow certain settings to be changed. It’s a smart way to keep your device locked down even if it ends up in the wrong hands.

Another layer of security introduced allows users to delay important features when they’re not in a place they trust, like home or work. For instance, if someone steals your phone, they can’t immediately turn off features that could help you find it. This delay gives you a window to act and potentially recover your device before the thief can make it untraceable.

These enhancements are part of Apple’s ongoing effort to prioritize user security. They understand that an iPhone is more than just a gadget—it’s a portal to personal data and memories. With each update, they’re making strides in ensuring that your information stays safe and that you remain the sole controller of your device’s settings.

Beyond just security, iOS 17.4 packs in several new features aimed at improving user experience and device functionality. Whether it’s through enhancing how we interact with our devices or by safeguarding our personal information, Apple’s latest update is designed with the user in mind. These new security measures show how serious Apple is about protecting its users and their data.

Detailed Battery Health Statistics

With the iOS 17.4 update, Apple introduces improved battery health statistics. This feature gives iPhone users a deeper look into how their device’s battery is performing. It’s more than just knowing how much charge is left. Now, users can see detailed info about their battery’s health over time. This means checking how fast it drains or how long it lasts on a full charge.

Apple designed this feature for those who want to keep their iPhone running smoothly for as long as possible. By understanding your battery’s health, you can make better decisions. For example, you might choose to replace your battery sooner to maintain optimal performance. This is especially helpful for people who rely on their iPhone daily and can’t afford sudden shut downs.

The update also includes tips on how to extend your battery’s life. Things like adjusting screen brightness or turning off background app refresh can make a big difference. These tips are easy to follow and can help users save battery power.

Beyond the individual benefits, these detailed statistics support Apple’s commitment to sustainability. By encouraging users to maintain battery health, fewer batteries end up in landfills. This approach shows Apple’s effort to balance tech advances with environmental care.

In sum, the iOS 17.4 update’s focus on battery health is a win for both users and the planet. It helps iPhones last longer and perform better. This feature is just one of many in the update, but it’s a big step for user satisfaction and sustainability.

AirPlay Improvements for Hotel Rooms

With the release of iOS 17.4, using your iPhone in hotel rooms just got better. Now, travelers can easily stream their favorite shows, listen to music, or share vacation photos directly on the hotel room’s TV. This feature, available in select hotels, removes the hassle of small screens while on vacation. AirPlay in hotel rooms transforms your entertainment experience during stays.

The setup for this is straightforward. Guests simply need to connect their iPhone to the same Wi-Fi network as the hotel TV. Using AirPlay, they can then mirror their iPhone’s screen or stream content directly. This means you can watch what you want, when you want—no need to rely on the hotel’s often limited TV channels.

Besides entertainment, this update addresses an essential issue: vision health. The new Screen Distance feature in Screen Time encourages users to maintain a healthier distance from their screens. If the phone is held closer than 12 inches for too long, the feature sends a reminder to move it further away. This aims to reduce eye strain and protect vision health, highlighting Apple’s commitment to user well-being.

Furthermore, Apple has made strides in security and accessibility with its latest update. They’ve brought attention to the risks posed by malicious web apps that could access data and hardware like cameras and microphones without permission. Simultaneously, Apple has expanded what’s possible on the App Store, now allowing streaming game apps and mini-apps to use in-app purchases. This opens a new world of entertainment and utility for iPhone users, ensuring that their array of apps is both secure and expansive.

iOS 17.4 marks a significant step forward in enhancing the iPhone experience, from making hotel stays more enjoyable with AirPlay improvements to promoting better screen habits and ensuring a safe, diverse app ecosystem.

Screen Distance Feature in Screen Time

Apple’s iOS 17.4 brings a helpful tool for phone users called the Screen Distance feature. It’s part of the Screen Time settings. This feature encourages people to hold their iPhones a bit farther away from their eyes. If someone keeps their phone closer than 12 inches for too long, it will suggest moving it further away. This is all about protecting eyes from strain.

The idea is simple yet very effective. Staring at screens too close can harm your eyes over time. With this new feature, iOS 17.4 aims to make users more aware of their screen habits. It promotes better vision health.

Setting up the Screen Distance feature is easy. Users find it in the Screen Time section of their iPhone’s settings. Once activated, it tracks how close the device is to the user’s face during use. If it detects the device is too close for a long period, a notification pops up. This reminder helps users adjust their behavior to reduce eye strain.

Apple has designed this feature with user well-being in mind. It doesn’t just track and advise. It educates users on the importance of maintaining a healthy distance from their screens. Through this, iOS 17.4 contributes to healthier screen usage patterns among iPhone users.

Bug Fixes and Enhancements

iOS 17.4 brings not only new features but also a handful of bug fixes and enhancements that improve the overall user experience. This update addresses several issues that users have reported in the past, making iPhones more reliable and fun to use.

One of the significant improvements in iOS 17.4 is its security enhancements. Apple has ramped up efforts to protect user data against threats. With increasing concerns about privacy, these updates ensure that personal information stays safe. The update strengthens the defense against malicious web apps that could access data, camera, microphone, and location without permission. This level of security is critical in today’s tech environment.

Performance tweaks are also a big part of iOS 17.4. iPhones now work smoother and faster, thanks to the enhancements. These changes may not always be visible, but they make a big difference in daily use. Apps open quicker, and the system handles tasks more efficiently. It’s these behind-the-scenes adjustments that keep the iPhone at the top of its game.

Moreover, the update fixes issues with Home Screen web apps. Before, these apps were not widely used because of certain limitations. Now, with improved integration and functionality, users can enjoy a better experience. This change could lead to more web apps appearing on the Home Screen, offering users more flexibility and choice.

In addition to solving specific problems, iOS 17.4 brings general stability improvements. These subtle tweaks contribute to a smoother, more enjoyable iPhone experience. Whether it’s browsing the web, playing games, or just scrolling through apps, users can expect a noticeably better performance.

Apple’s dedication to enhancing user experience is clear with each update. iOS 17.4 not only introduces new features but also focuses on fixing existing issues and making iPhones more secure and efficient. These ongoing efforts are what keep users loyal and confident in their choice of smartphone.

Enhanced System Features and Performance

The upcoming iOS 17.4 update brings a range of system enhancements destined to improve the overall performance and security of your iPhone. From the security of your personal data to the way you interact with your car, every aspect of your iPhone experience is refined.

Security Enhancements

iOS 17.4 reinforces device security with updated encryption and malware protections. These security updates include the latest advancements in safeguarding user information through improved NFC chip functionalities and Vision Pro technology integrated with the device’s framework.

Apple Pay and Wallet Enhancements

The Wallet app sees enhancements, offering a broader array of mobile payment systems and alternative payment options. With Apple Pay, transactions are faster and more secure, and users can expect expanded support for retail and web payments.

Battery and Performance Monitoring

Users can monitor battery health more precisely with updated cycle count and charge information. This helps in proactively managing battery life and ensures that your device remains at peak performance throughout its lifespan.

iOS 17.4 for Developers

Developers gain access to new APIs and app analytics that allow for richer app experiences. WebKit updates and a variety of developer tools offer improved capabilities to build dynamic apps for iOS users.

Language and Accessibility Updates

Multilingual support with Siri expands, with enhancements in English, French, German, and Spanish language processing. Accessibility options are tailored to provide more personalized device interactions.

Home and CarPlay Innovations

Improvements in Home integration facilitate better climate control and energy management within your living spaces. CarPlay advances with deeper integration, including tire pressure monitoring and displaying vital details on the vehicle’s instrument cluster.

Media Experience Improvements

Your media experience is richer with updates to Apple Music and podcasts. Users can now enjoy a more immersive audio experience and access to podcast transcripts right within the Podcasts app.

New Emoji and Messaging Features

A fresh selection of emojis brings more ways to express emotions in iMessage. SharePlay integration is improved, permitting users to watch TV shows in sync with friends.

Six new emoji characters were introduced with iOS 17.4:

  • Lime
  • Mushroom
  • ‍ Phoenix
  • ‍ Broken chain
  • ‍↔️ Head shaking horizontally (no)
  • ‍↕️ Head shaking vertically (yes)

Siri & Search Advancements

Siri gets smarter with better search functionalities, especially within the context of the Podcasts app’s new ‘Listen Now’ feature, offering curated content based on your listening history.

Maps and Environment Information

Apple Maps now provides more detailed climate and environmental information, making it easier to understand the weather and terrain of your destination.

User Privacy and Protections

This update includes new privacy measures, like notarization for apps that increase protection against malware, and stolen device protection for safeguarding personal information.

Enhanced Live Activities Integration

Live Activities is more deeply integrated, including a new Stopwatch Live Activity, providing users with more dynamic and real-time information.

System Updates and Bug Fixes

iOS 17.4 addresses known bugs and system risks, prioritizing a stable and responsive experience on compatible iPhone models, which include the iPhone XR and up to the latest iPhone 15 Pro.

Streamlined Settings and Accessibility Options

The Settings menu has been streamlined for easier navigation, and new accessibility features are introduced, heightening the customizability of the user’s experience.

Wallet App and Payment Systems

The Wallet app includes updated payment systems, giving users a more fluid experience with app payments and clearer explanations of commissions associated with these transactions.

Device Compatibility and Support

The latest update supports a wide range of devices, ensuring that older models like the iPhone XR receive the necessary enhancements to stay up to date with system features and performance.

Adjustments to Apple Ecosystem Policies and Compliance

Apple has introduced changes in the iOS 17.4 update to align with the Digital Markets Act (DMA) enforced by the EU and to improve user choices and fairness.

Compliance with the Digital Markets Act

The Digital Markets Act (DMA) is a set of regulations laid out by the European Union to ensure fair competition and user choice in digital markets. Apple’s iOS 17.4 update introduces modifications to comply with these regulations, including offering users the ability to select alternative browser engines and access third-party app marketplaces.

Changes to App Store Practices

Apple has refined practices within its App Store, providing more transparency in app analytics and ensuring that developers can offer users a variety of app choices without compromising privacy or security.

Support for Alternative App Marketplaces

With iOS 17.4, users gain the ability to install applications from alternative app marketplaces. Apple has implemented ways to ensure that these third-party stores meet certain safety standards to protect user data.

Implementation of Web Browser and App Choices

Apple now allows users to select their default web browser from a range of third-party browsers, supporting alternative browser engines previously not permitted on the iOS platform.

Third-Party Payment Systems and Commission Structures

Developers now have the option to use alternative payment systems, and Apple has adapted its commission structure to accommodate this, with the aim of promoting fairness and competition.

Enhancement in Game Streaming App Support

The update brings improved support for game streaming apps, providing developers with the necessary APIs to create more immersive and efficient gaming experiences for users.

Additional Developer Tools and Frameworks

Apple has introduced new developer tools and frameworks with the iOS 17.4 update, aiding developers in creating more robust and engaging apps while complying with EU’s guidelines.

New Regulations for App Safety Features

Apple complies with new EU regulations to augment app safety features. These enhancements increase the level of user security while interacting with various applications on their devices.

Adaptations for Global Markets

While Apple has focused on aligning with the European Union’s DMA, it has also made adaptations to its ecosystem policies that impact global markets, allowing for a more uniform and open approach to digital content distribution.

Future Updates and Public Beta Access

Apple is transparent about its continuous effort to offer future updates in line with evolving regulations and promises to provide access to public beta versions, so users and developers can test and adapt to changes early on.


With the iOS 17.4 update, Apple has once again shown its dedication to enhancing the iPhone experience. By focusing on security, performance, and user well-being, they’re ensuring that users have a more reliable and efficient device in their hands. These improvements are a testament to Apple’s ongoing commitment to innovation and user satisfaction. Users can look forward to a smoother, faster iPhone experience that prioritizes their data’s security and their device’s overall stability. This update is a clear indicator that Apple continues to lead with user-centric updates that make a real difference in everyday use.

Frequently Asked Questions

The release of iOS 17.4 has introduced several new features and enhancements. This section provides answers to some of the most commonly asked questions regarding the update.

How can I download and install the iOS 17.4 beta version?

The beta version is no longer available as the full release came out on 3/5/2024.

What improvements does iOS 17.4 bring to CarPlay functionality?

The iOS 17.4 update includes improvements to CarPlay, offering better integration with vehicle functions. This could include more responsive interactions with the car’s display and controls, as well as enhanced Siri support for a smoother driving experience.

What are the latest emojis introduced in the iOS 17.4 update?

With the iOS 17.4 update, new emojis have been added to enrich text communication. These graphics cover a variety of expressions and objects, further diversifying the emoji keyboard. There are 6 new emoji characters introduced with iOS 17.4:

  • Lime
  • Mushroom
  • ‍ Phoenix
  • ‍ Broken chain
  • ‍↔️ Head shaking horizontally (no)
  • ‍↕️ Head shaking vertically (yes)

Are there any changes in security or privacy features with the iOS 17.4 update?

The update introduces additional security measures and privacy protection features. This might include advancements in encryption for iMessage and FaceTime, as well as updated app permissions to give users more control over their data.

Is sideloading of apps supported in iOS 17.4, and if so, how does it work?

iOS 17.4 provides the facility for users in the European Union to sideload apps. This means that they can install applications from sources outside of the App Store. The process and guidelines for sideloading will be subject to Apple’s security protocols to ensure device safety.

On what date and time is the iOS 17.4 update scheduled to be released?

Apple typically does not announce the exact release date and time of updates in advance. It is common for the update to be rolled out on a phased basis, so users should keep an eye on their device settings for the availability of iOS 17.4.

Will XR get iOS 17.4?

Yes, the iPhone XR will receive the iOS 17.4 update. Apple typically extends software support for its devices for several years, and the XR, along with other recent models like the iPhone XS, 11, 12, 13, 14 series, and the iPhone SE models, is expected to be supported.

What’s new in iOS 17.4?

iOS 17.4 introduces several bug fixes and enhancements including security improvements to protect user data, performance optimizations for smoother and quicker device functionality, and improvements to Home Screen web apps stability. Additionally, it debuts the Screen Distance feature, advancing Apple’s commitment to user well-being.

Does iOS 17 have any bugs?

Yes, like most major software releases, iOS 17 has had its share of bugs, ranging from issues with the Weather widget, occasional iPhone overheating, and battery drain problems. Apple has been addressing these bugs through subsequent updates since iOS 17’s release.

Does iOS 17 shut down iPhones?

The initial question is not directly answered within the provided summary or reference material, suggesting there might not be widespread reports or confirmation from Apple that iOS 17 causes iPhones to shut down as a general issue.

Is iOS 17 bad for iPhone 13?

There are claims suggesting iOS 17 may not be optimized for iPhone 13 and older models, implying possible performance or functionality issues compared to newer models like the iPhone 14 and 15 which are deemed to be more compatible with the update. However, these are individual experiences and may not represent the overall performance of iOS 17 on iPhone 13 models.

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