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Apple iOS 8.3 arrives with multi-cultural emoji

Apple is rolling out the final release of its iOS 8.3 operating system, finally bringing those racially diverse emoji characters to the masses.

The new emoji, first revealed by the public beta version earlier in February, allow users to select more skin tones beyond the Caucasian-centric characters featured in other releases. There are also more family options to pick from.

Beyond that, there are new icons to represent the Apple Watch, Mac and the updated iPhone models, while Apple is also boosting the array of flags available to its emoji-happy users.

Elsewhere in the release, there’s a boost for those few souls currently able to make use of Apple’s CarPlay platform.

The iOS-centric in-car infotainment system is only available on a few systems, but until now has required a physical connection via a Lightning cable. Now it can hook up wirelessly

Read more: Apple CarPlay – 8 things you can do with Apple’s in-car system

Siri has also been boosted to account for new accents and languages (Russian, Danish, Dutch, Thai, Swedish, Turkish and Portuguese), while her voice has also been tweaked a little bit. The voice-controlled personal assistant is also able to make calls using the iPhone’s speakerphone, rather than having to manually switch to the loud option.

Meanwhile, there are new filtering options for messages, the option to report messages as junk (just like Mail), while iPhone and iPad users can choose to store messages from unknown senders in a different list.

Finally, it’s now possible to adjust app store settings to allow free apps to be downloaded without Touch ID or Apple ID password authentication.

There’s also a laundry list of performance improvements for messages, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, app responsiveness, app launching, Safari tabs, Control Center and much more.

iOS 8.3 for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch can be downloaded now over the air or via iTunes.

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