iOS 17 is coming with a bunch of cool new features, many of which are already available as part of the iOS 17 public beta. Unfortunately some of the features we’ve been told about are still missing, and they won’t be available when the new operating system rolls out to everyone later this year.
There isn’t a huge number of features that don’t have a solid release window yet, but that list does include some of the bigger announcements Apple made at WWDC back in June. So, to make sure you aren’t in for any surprises when you install iOS 17 on your phone, here are the features that won’t be available on launch day.
The Journal app
The Journal app was one of the bigger announcements from WWDC, with Apple promising a brand new way to record your memories. But rather than just being a diary or a note taking app, this is more like a digital curator — integrating aspects of your phone like navigation, music and photos to make suggestions on what each new entry should be.
The app includes secure end-to-end encryption and iCloud backup while fostering positive mental health and wellbeing — something journaling itself has been proven to do.
Unfortunately the Journal app is set to be released at an unspecified point later this year, and will be missing the official launch of iOS 17 in the fall.
AirDrop over the internet
AirDrop is incredibly useful, but it does rely on you staying in close proximity for the duration of the transfer. But there are times when that isn’t really practical, especially if the transfer itself is rather large or taking its sweet time concluding. That’s where AirDrop over the internet is supposed to come in, finishing off the transfer using the internet.
Sadly this is another feature that isn’t available as part of the iOS 17 beta, and footnotes on the iOS 17 preview page confirm it will be arriving later this year. It’s unclear when, but that phrase seems to be code for “skipping the iOS 17 public launch”.
NameDrop to Apple Watch
While NameDrop has launched with the iOS 17 beta, it only works if you’re trying to transfer between two different iPhones. NameDropping content to an Apple Watch, which Apple announced at WWDC, is still mysteriously absent.
According to Apple this feature will be coming later this year, as part of a new software update. That will presumably be a two-part update, activating all the necessary components in both iPhones and Apple Watches. Just as long as you have an Apple Watch Series 6 and later, Apple Watch SE or Apple Watch Ultra.
AirPlay in hotel rooms
On from AirDrop onto AirPlay, Apple’s casting feature that lets you wirelessly beam content from your device to a compatible TV screen. Back at WWDC Apple announced that this feature was going to roll out to major hotel chains, letting you AirDrop content to the screen in your room.
The problem is this isn’t really something Apple can roll out quickly — whether it wants to or not. While select hotels are expected to rollout AirPlay later this year, it’s going to be an ongoing process as different chains come on board and upgrade their existing TV screens.
Collaborative Apple Music playlists
This is one thing Apple Music fans have been asking about for some time now, and Apple has confirmed it will finally allow collaborative playlists on its platform. That means multiple people can contribute, adding or removing songs, adjusting the order and even reacting to whatever’s playing with emoji.
Unfortunately it won’t be arriving with iOS 17 at launch, though Apple confirms that this feature will be arriving at some point before the end of the year.
iOS 17 is still going to have plenty of features to enjoy when it officially arrives, and many of them are already available as part of the iOS 17 public beta. Assuming you are brave enough to install unfinished software on your device, you can begin using them now.
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Tom is the Tom's Guide's UK Phones Editor, tackling the latest smartphone news and vocally expressing his opinions about upcoming features or changes. It's long way from his days as editor of Gizmodo UK, when pretty much everything was on the table. He’s usually found trying to squeeze another giant Lego set onto the shelf, draining very large cups of coffee, or complaining about how terrible his Smart TV is.