iOS 9 Beta 4 is HERE With A Bunch Of New Features In Tow

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Apple has released the fourth beta of iOS 9 for iPhone and iPad. To be clear this is the fourth DEVELOPER beta–you need to be a registered developer to download it. If you are a public beta tester there’s only been one release of that yet, but expect to see the second version of the iOS 9 Public Beta soon–and expect it to have all the new features of the fourth Developer Beta.

There’s still about 2 months to go before Apple releases the final Gold Master version of iOS 9 to the public, but if the latest beta is any kind of indication, development is going rapidly. The fourth beta of iOS has added a few major features and plenty of minor improvements. It’s also the “smoothest” iOS 9 beta to date–it feels fast and snappy.

If you’re a developer you can download the fourth Developer Beta now via Apple’s Developer Center or via an over the air update on your registered iOS 9 devices by going to Settings>General>Update. This beta update ranges between 300-350MB in size depending on your device.

Here’s what’s new:

Home Sharing is back

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In the last beta Apple removed Home Sharing, the feature that allows you to share your music library with others in your house. Some thought Apple was nixing this feature due to the launch of Apple Music. But Eddy Cue told fans on Twitter the feature would be back–and, indeed, it has returned in the latest beta.

Volume as shutter button is back

Likewise, in iOS 9 beta 3 the ability to use the physical volume buttons on the side of the iPhone as the camera shutter button was absent. That ability has now returned in beta 4.

Disable Apple Pay on the Home screen

A new setting lets users disable the ability to use Apple Pay from an iOS 9 devices home screen.

Notifications Settings gets new icon

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In the Setting app the icon for the Notifications settings has changed. It’s gone from grey to red, making it easier to notice and matching the color of the notification badges on apps.

Homekit Notification Settings

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The Notifications settings screen now also allows you to set HomeKit notification preferences.

iPod touch support

Apple introduced brand new A8-based iPod touches earlier this month. With iOS 9 beta 4 developer can now install the beta on those iPod touches.

Handoff gets a new UI in the app switcher

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The Handoff UI has been revamped in iOS 9’s app switcher window. Previously Handoff was represented as a card along with the other cards representing apps. Now in beta 4 Handoff is represented by a banner running along the bottom of the screen.

Picture-in-Picture for Podcasts

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For the iPad iOS 9 is bringing picture-in-picture support so users can watch a video on the same screen while they’re working in another app. In beta 4 the same feature is extended to the Podcasts app.

New photo picker UI

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In beta 4 there’s a new photo picker UI for the web.

Other improvements

In addition to the above beta 4 also sees larger artwork when sharing Apple Music content, Bing search results can now be disabled in Spotlight Search settings, and updated icons for iPhone and Apple Watch on the Battery widget.

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