Apple released iOS 13.7 for iPhone today, Tuesday, September 1, and is upgrading iOS’s existing COVID-19 exposure feature. Now US states no longer need to create an app to take advantage of exposure messages. Instead, they can simply offer support for compatible phones.
In iOS 13.7 you will find the menu Exposure messages moved from Settings -> Privacy -> Health -> COVID-19 Exposure logging to Settings -> Exposure messages. You’ll also see a new “Accessibility Alerts” switch so you can know when your area is adding support for the feature. These changes match what we have already seen in iOS 14.
If your state supports exposure notifications in this way, see directly from the exposure notifications settings page. Your iPhone goes through the correct steps to check if these messages are supported in your area. If they are, you will see how you can take advantage of the feature. If they are not, you just need to come back later or rely on the above “Availability Alerts”.
This update comes just six days after Apple released the first developer and official beta release for July 13th. Although it’s one of Apple’s shortest beta test periods in quite some time, it makes sense if the only major new feature is this exposure update.
To download iOS 13.7, you need an iPhone that is compatible with iOS 13. Then open Settings -> General -> Software Update and then follow the on-screen instructions to download and install the new update. If you have “Automatic Updates” enabled, you can simply have your iPhone updated overnight when you are connected to Wi-Fi and connected to the power.
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