By Don Reisinger
March 28, 2017

Apple’s latest big iOS update has found its way to iPhones and iPads.

The tech giant on Monday released iOS 10.3 with the ability for users to find the location of their wireless Apple AirPods earbuds. The operating system update also includes several enhancements to Apple’s virtual personal assistant Siri, including the ability to ask Siri for the status on bill payments. Siri can also now communicate with carmaker apps and tell users their current fuel level and other information about their vehicles.

The iPhone maker has also made several under-the-hood improvements, including a transition to a new file system in iOS 10.3 that should improve the software’s performance. As always, security fixes are also bundled with the operating system.

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Apple’s releases periodic updates to its operating systems to deliver new features and fix bugs and security holes. While the company urges users to download the new software as soon as possible to take advantage of new features and protect themselves from possible threats, some users opt to wait a few days to ensure early adopters aren’t experiencing any problems that could cause trouble on their devices.

Apple tests its operating system versions both privately and with a developer community that reports on bugs before the software is released to the general public. But it’s possible some bugs could slip through the cracks. Last year, for instance, Apple scrambled to issue a patch to iOS 9.3 after users reported the operating system update caused apps to freeze. Reverting to an older, stable version of the operating system was an arduous task, leaving users with little recourse but to wait for an update.

As of this writing, there’s no word of major problems with iOS 10.3, suggesting the operating system is generally stable.

But iOS 10.3 wasn’t the only software update Apple released on Monday.

Apple also released an update to its desktop operating system macOS Sierra called 10.12.4. While it comes with minor updates and security fixes, it also offers a new Night Shift feature that reduces the Mac screen’s blue light to reduce eye strain. Apple Watch’s watchOS has also added a Theater Mode feature that will keep the smartwatch silent and its screen dark until users tap its display or press the Digital Crown or side button. It’s designed to not disturb folks in a movie theater.

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