Apple Releases iOS 17.4 Release Candidate EU Opens Sideloading, Supports Cloud Gaming For The First Time

iOS 17.4

Apple has officially released the Release Candidate (RC) version of iOS 17.4, marking a significant update that introduces several new features and opens up unprecedented functionalities for users, particularly in the European Union (EU). This version, if devoid of any major issues, is expected to be rolled out as the final version next week.

One of the most notable features of iOS 17.4 is its historic move to open up the app marketplace for sideloading. This change, exclusive to the EU region, also extends to opening up payment systems, third-party browser engines, and third-party NFC capabilities. Additionally, the update brings cloud gaming applications, such as Xbox Cloud Gaming and Nvidia GeForce NOW, to all users, offering a new method to enjoy AAA games on mobile devices.

New Features in iOS 17.4 RC:

  • Sideloading and Open Systems in the EU: For the first time, iOS opens its ecosystem to allow sideloading of apps, along with access to third-party payment systems, browser engines, and NFC, though these changes are limited to the EU.
  • Cloud Gaming for All Users: The update introduces support for cloud gaming apps, enabling users to play AAA titles on their iPhones through services like Xbox Cloud Gaming and Nvidia GeForce NOW.
  • New Emoji: iOS 17.4 RC adds 118 new emoji, including a phoenix, a lime, and a face shaking its head, as well as a series of people emojis indicating different directions. These additions are part of the Emoji 15.1 update proposed by Unicode in September 2023.
  • Revamped CarPlay: A new option in CarPlay introduces a “new instrument cluster experience,” displaying upcoming action information in a refreshed dashboard layout.
  • Podcasts Transcription: Apple introduces a transcription feature for Podcasts, automatically converting audio content into text transcripts. Initially, this feature supports English, French, German, and Spanish language podcasts.
  • Enhanced Battery Health Information: For iPhone 15 series models, the battery health section now includes additional information such as battery cycle count, production date, and first use date.

This update signifies Apple’s compliance with EU regulations, aiming to enhance user choice and competition. It also reflects Apple’s ongoing efforts to enrich the iOS ecosystem with new features and improvements that cater to user demands for greater flexibility and more comprehensive information about their devices.

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