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iOS 13.4.1 update fixes FaceTime bug that cut off vulnerable users

Apple has rolled out an update for iOS 13.4 and iPadOS 13.4, which fixes a FaceTime bug that prevented device owners from video chatting with friends and family on much older devices.

iOS/iPadOS 13.4.1 arrives on Tuesday, remedying the issue that restricted FaceTime calls to the few folks still left using iPhones, iPads and iPod touch models running iOS 9 or Mac models on OS X El Capitan.

The issue, reported widely during last week, caused concern due to the increased number of people relying on FaceTime to stay in touch with family members during this time of lockdown and social distancing. It stood to reason that older users might be using hand-me-down devices that are still running the much older version of the OS.

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It wasn’t initially known whether this was a bug, or whether Apple had simply decided to cut off iOS 9 and El Capitan devices when it launched iOS 13.4 and iPad OS 13.4 last week, so it’s good to see this rectified.

Other improvements launched today mainly focus around fixing bugs, with no new features launched, as is to be expected from such a minor release.

The release notes for iOS 13.4.1 read:

  • Fixes an issue where devices running iOS 13.4 could not participate in FaceTime calls with devices running iOS 9.3.6 and earlier or OS X El Capitan 10.11.6 and earlier.
  • Addresses a bug with the Settings app where choosing Bluetooth from the quick actions menu on the Home screen would fail.

Meanwhile, the list of updates in iPad 13.4.1 are as follows:

  • Fixes an issue where devices running iPadOS 13.4 could not participate in FaceTime calls with devices running iOS 9.3.6 and earlier or OS X El Capitan 10.11.6 and earlier.
  • Addresses an issue on iPad Pro 12.9-inch (4th generation) and iPad Pro 11-inch (2nd generation) where the flashlight may not turn on after tapping the Flashlight button in Control Center or on the Lock screen.
  • Addresses a bug with the Settings app where choosing Bluetooth from the quick actions menu on the Home screen would fail.

As always, the update is available to download over the air from Settings > General > Software update.

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