iOS 17.1 features: what's new in iOS 17.1

By Julie Clover

Apple today released iOS 17.1, which introduces a number of new features to iPhones running iOS 17. While Apple outlined some of the major new features in its release notes, there are also a few hidden features that were not mentioned.

In this guide, we have rounded up all additions and changes , which we found in iOS 17.1.

AirDrop over the Internet

AirDrop transfer can now be done over a cellular connection or Wi-Fi. if you go beyond the reach of the person you are sharing information with. This means you don't have to be close to someone if you're transferring a large number of files.

In the AirDrop section of the Settings menu, there is a new “Out of Range” toggle that you can use to enable or disable cellular data transfer.

Apple Music Favorites

You can favorite songs, albums, playlists, and artists in the iOS 17.1 Music app. Featured music is added to the library and improves recommendations. Adding to Favorites replaces the previous “Love” system, and adding to favorites can be done using the Now Playing widget on the lock screen.

A star next to a track in an album means it is a favorite. , and the dot is next to the track that is played most often. Thanks to the favorites system, the Music app now suggests songs to add to playlists so you don't run out of content.

Over time, Apple plans to provide a “Favorite Songs” playlist and suggest collaborative playlists. , but these features don't appear to be implemented yet.

Apple Music Playlists

iOS 17.1 introduces color-matched playlist designs that can be selected as a new customization option your playlists. There are eight cover styles with geometric shapes and gradients, and the colors are taken from the album cover of the first song in the playlist.

Double tap on Apple Watch

Double tap is included in the watchOS 10.1 update, which is also in beta, and its settings can be controlled using the Apple Watch app.

Double Tap allows Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 owners to place their thumb and index finger together to control Apple Watch with one hand. This gesture can be used to open Smart Stack, answer/end calls, play/pause music, stop alarms and timers, etc.

Standby display options

Apple has added a new Display section to the Standby section of the Settings app that contains some new customization options. The display can be set to turn off automatically after 20 seconds or never.

The existing Night Mode feature, which adds a red tint and darkens the screen, has been moved to this section, as has the Motion to Wake toggle. The Display section also replaces the previous Always On switch, which limited the display from turning off intelligently.

Action Button Update

In iOS 17.1, Apple changed the functionality of the action button, to prevent certain actions from triggering when your iPhone is in your pocket or bag. Camera, Flashlight, Voice Recorder, Focus, and Magnifier no longer activate when pressing the action button while the ‌‌iPhone‌‌ is hidden in your pocket.

Actions , which makes sense to activate the mute function in the pocket, and the shortcut can still be activated while the ‌‌iPhone‌‌ is inside the pocket by long pressing the action button, but other functions are disabled.

UK bank account balances in the Wallet app

UK users can add their UK bank accounts to the Wallet app in iOS 17.1, allowing them to see their account balances, payments, purchases and deposits.

Wallet app and Discover cards

USA. Discover users who add their credit cards to Apple Wallet can see their card's total balance and transaction history right on their ‌iPhone‌ with iOS 17.1.

Books app

The “Reading Now” section in the Apple Books app has been renamed to “Reading Now.”

Dynamic Island Flashlight Indicator

When the flashlight turns on on iPhone 14 Pro, ‌iPhone 14‌ Pro Max, iPhone 15 or ‌iPhone 15‌ Additionally, the Dynamic Island now has a flashlight icon to let you know it's on. Flashlight icon on ‌Dynamic Island‌ was previously limited to the iPhone 15 Pro and ‌iPhone 15 Pro‌ Max.

Controller support

iOS 17.1 includes support for the Nintendo Switch N64 controller.

Extend wallpaper

When you set up new wallpaper, Apple has added an Expand option that you can use if the image doesn't fit on your display.

Shuffle Photo

When you add a “Shuffle Photo” lock screen ” in iOS 17.1, you can choose a specific album of photos to appear on the lock screen, rather than relying on Apple's pre-selected options such as People, Pets, or Nature.

Selecting any of Photo Shuffle's main images takes you to a settings screen where you can select the Favorites album or select any other album you've created, giving you full control over the images that appear on your Lock Screen. Previously, there was a tool for manually selecting photos, but now you can select an entire album faster.

The frequency of photo shuffling remains the same: on tap, on lock, hourly, or daily.


On iPhone with ‌Dynamic Island‌ You will now see a black background when using the Accessibility feature. In previous versions of ‌iOS 17‌ showed a blurry version of the device's wallpaper. Changing the background to black prevents ‌Dynamic Island‌ will not appear twice when using Reachability.

Home key support for Matter locks

If you have a lock with Matter, you added to HomeKit, it can now be added to the Wallet app if it supports Home Key.

Screen Time Sync

Screen Time settings are now better synced across devices, according to Apple. This change addresses complaints from parents who have found that Screen Time settings are reset or out of sync between devices, giving children more access to their devices than intended.

Journal app

The promised Journal app isn't in iOS 17.1, but there are references to journaling suggestions in the code, indicating it could be coming soon .

New for iPad

The iPadOS 17 update adds support for Apple Pencil USB-C.

Crash detection optimizations

Apple in iOS 17.1 has further optimized the crash detection feature on the ‌iPhone 14‌ and ‌iPhone 15‌ models. Apple has tweaked the crash detection feature several times to prevent its random activation at ski resorts and amusement parks.

Fixed 80% charging limit


Using ‌iPhone 15‌ models, Apple added a switch that prevents devices from charging above 80 percent to keep the battery healthy for a longer period of time. In ‌iOS 17‌ ‌iPhone‌ you can ignore this setting and charge above 80 percent, but after the second beta update this no longer happens.

Messages bug fix

iOS 17.1 fixes an issue with the search function in the Messages app in ‌iOS 17‌. Some ‌iPhone 15‌ Users were able to search for old messages after transferring their data from the old ‌iPhone‌. The message search feature only works for recent messages, but an update fixes the issue.

Fix display image persistence

iOS 17.1 fixes an issue that “may cause display saving image” is an issue that has been observed on many iPhone models, especially the ‌iPhone 15‌. Several ‌iPhone 15 Pro‌ Owners complained that after the launch of ‌iPhone‌ they experienced severe “screen burn-in” but it turned out to be a software-related image saving issue.

More Bug Fixes

  • Resolves an issue where incoming call names may not appear during another call.
  • Addresses an issue where custom and purchased ringtones may not appear as options. for your text tone.
  • Fixed an issue that could cause the keyboard to be less responsive.

Read more

Read more For what's included in ‌iOS 17‌, we have a dedicated review of iOS 17.

Related Reviews: iOS 17, iPadOS 17Related Forums: iOS 17, iPadOS 17111 comments

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