The 5 biggest new features in iOS 11.4

White Home Pod speaker on a black shelf

White Home Pod speaker on a black shelf

Apple's smart speaker HomePod gets a new feature with iOS 11.4. Alongside the recent addition of AirPlay 2 on Apple's smart speaker, this would solve a big problem lots of people have voiced with the device.

There are still some issues, though: yes, HomePod now supports Apple's calendar app, but still cannot distinguish between voices, so anyone within speaking range of one of your HomePods can access your calendar data (you can turn off calendar support in settings, of course). The feature also keeps up with deleted messages, which will sync to all your devices - so no more having to delete a conversation per device.

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Getting the iOS 11.4 update is simple enough.

iOS 11.4 is available to download and install now. But, with AirPlay 2, you can finally pick a song and control the volume of your AirPlay 2-enabled speaker from Control Center, Music app, Home app, the Lock screen, or in-app controls on your Apple devices. That now changes with iOS 11.4. For those with multiple HomePods across their home, they will now be able to fill their entire home with in-sync audio through multiple speakers or only in select areas like a bedroom, office, or patio. Once you've done this, the iPhone's Home app will ask you if you want to "create stereo pair" when two HomePods are plugged in and activated in the same room. What this means is that you can delete one conversation on a device and it will be gone from another, making the process of managing your conversations far more epic than before. Multi-room audio also works on a wide variety of third-party speaker devices. Apple's iOS 11.4 update also comes with Messages on iCloud, which was actually announced at WWDC 2017. But it was quite obvious that iOS 11.4 will fix all the wrong by introducing the feature to the masses at last and Apple has delivered today. AirPlay lets users stream audio or video from an Apple device to another through Wi-Fi connectivity, and also mirror what's on their device. Here's the full list of brands offering early support: Sonos, Denon and Marantz, Bose, Bang and Olufsen, Beats, Naim, Devialet, Dynaudio, Polk, McIntosh, Bowers & Wilkins, Libratone, Definitive Technology, and Bluesound.

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The new update also adds support for Apple's new ClassKit framework.

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