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Apple iOS 15.2.1 fixes CarPlay, Messages and a troubling HomeKit bug

Apple has released iOS 15.2.1 (and its iPadOS counterpart) to the public, which includes a number of bug fixes and the plugging of a worrying security vulnerability.

Available to download now, the minor update for iPhone and iPad resolves an issue with CarPlay not working properly with third-party apps, while also nixing a bug that prevented photos loading in the Messages app.

The brief release notes for the update, which comes in at a sizeable 917MB on my iPhone 12 Pro Max, are as follows:

iOS 15.2.1 contains bug fixes for your iPhone including:

Messages may not load photos sent using an iCloud Link
Third-party CarPlay apps may not respond to input

Apple

The company also says the update resolves a worrying security vulnerability pertaining to the HomeKit smart home platform, which was causing iPhones or iPads to crash over and over again.

The vulnerability amounted to a denial of service attack and discovered by a security researcher and documented in a blog post. Essentially, if a bad actor changed the name of the HomeKit device to half-a-million characters long, it could cause issues with the device depending on whether it was enabled in the Control Centre.

In a support document (via 9to5Mac), Apple today says a “resource exhaustion issue” was responsible for the crashing incidents, but it has now been resolved in iOS 15.2.1 and iPadOS 15.2.1, thanks to some improved input validation.

If you’re seeking new features from your iPhone, you may now have to wait until iOS 16 this summer. iOS 15.2 introduced plenty of them, including support for Apple Music Voice Plan, Digital Legacy and and the App Privacy Report. However, Apple just seeded a new beta of iOS 15.3 to developers ahead of its forthcoming release, but there aren’t really any new features to speak of.

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