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Apple releases third public betas for iOS 14.2 and iPadOS 14.2 with new Emoji and Shazam Control Center options

Apple today released the third public betas of the upcoming updates for iOS 14.2 and iPadOS 14.2 for its public beta testing group, two weeks after the second beta was released and one day after the third beta was released to developers.

Public beta testers who have signed up for Apple’s beta testing program can download the updates for iOS and iPadOS® 14.2 wirelessly after installing the correct certificate from the public beta website on an iOS device.

Apple is adding new Emoji 13 emoji characters in iOS and iPadOS 14.2. Options include smiling face with tears, ninja, pinched fingers, anatomical heart, black cat, mammoth, polar bear, dodo, bow tie, bell pepper, tamale and bubble tea, potted plant, piñata, piston, wand, feather, hut, and more. A full list can be found here.

iOS 14.2 introduces a new music recognition control for the Control Center, which deepens the integration of Apple’s own Shazam app into the iOS operating system. With music recognition, you can discover music playing around you and recognize music in apps, even if you have AirPods on.

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The Shazam music detection feature can be added to the Control Center through the Control Center options in the Settings app. To use the feature, open the Control Center and then tap the Shazam icon to start a single detection.

The update includes a redesigned Now Playing widget for the Control Center, which lists recently played albums that you may want to listen to when music isn’t playing. There’s also a redesigned interface for AirPlay, making it easier to play music on multiple PAirPlay‌ 2-enabled devices at home.

For the visually impaired, Apple added a person recognition feature to the Magnifying Glass app, which uses the camera to let iPhone users know how far away other people are. This can be helpful for social distancing purposes.

For Apple Card users, the iOS 14.2 update provides an option for annual spending history so that Apple Card holders can see how much they have spent in the current calendar year and how much daily money they have made. Prior to iOS 14.2, Apple Card offered spending activity information in a weekly or monthly summary.

For smaller but interesting improvements, iOS 14.2 offers a new icon for the Apple Watch app. The watch is now equipped with one of Apple’s new Solo Loop straps.

The new beta version of iOS 14.2 will likely be tested for some time as Apple works on releasing new iPhones. The new iPhones will be available from next Friday.

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