iOS 16 and How It Affects ASO


Every September, Apple announces and releases new products and software updates. On September 13, 2022, Apple rolled out iOS 16, and this software update has drawn as much attention as new products, such as iPhone 14 series and Apple Watches. This article then briefly discusses some interesting changes and how some changes may affect ASO measures in the future. In addition, it will touch on Apple’s new products and make a supposition about where Apple is going toward. 

Live Text

iOS 16 has brought various features that were not available with previous versions, and “Live Text” for video and images and lifting subjects of images from their backgrounds are getting much attention from iPhone users.  Live Text allows users to select and control texts on an image or a video. This opens up a doorway for users to more dynamically interact with their phones. Please refer to the example below.

Controlling texts of a photo
The same thing can be done on a video

Lifting Subjects from Backgrounds

Another newly added feature is lifting subjects from backgrounds. It is a usual task for photographers and graphic designers, yet now it can be done by anyone who has an iOS 16 iPhone. This will allow users to play with the photos and videos even more by lifting subjects of their specific interest from the photo or video’s background and using that subject with another image or photo.  Since Apple added this feature and Live Text, some photoshop apps may lose their jobs, so it might be necessary for those apps to provide something iPhone cannot respond to or some useful features by which users can have more fun with these newly added functions.  Below is an example of how subjects are lifted from backgrounds on an iPhone.

Changes in Messages

Apple also added new helpful features to its message. It now allows users to edit or unsend recently sent messages. It also added “unread” function to help users secure some time to respond to important messages. Moreover, it added features like Safari Tab Groups and the ability to share notes, presentations, and reminders so iPhone users may work together more interactively. These features seem to have many similarities with work-space services, such as Slacks, so it might be important to take notes on whether Apple moves further into this or not.


  • Recent messages can be “unsent”
  • Recent messages can be edited
  • Read messages can be “unread”
  • More interactions and shares are allowed

iOS 16 Updates that may Affect ASO

Among many, the updates regarding push notifications, lock screens, and widgets may have a direct influence on ASO. The push notifications now appear at the bottom of a lock screen. Speaking of the lock screen, it is a section that has the most updates with iOS 16. iPhone users now can customize their lock screens and have multiple of them. Plus, users can add widgets of their choice there. Overall, ASO in the near future may get a direct effect from the changes around the lock screen, and this article will discuss how it is so. 

Push Notifications

As mentioned above, the push notifications now appear at the bottom of a lock screen. In the previous versions, it appeared on the top. This change shows Apple’s intention to help widgets and the image on the lock screen more visible. With this change, the apps that send push notifications often, such as schedule apps or security apps, may have to change their screenshots to move the notifications from top to bottom. Such change might not affect hugely on the app’s impression or CVR, yet it is still important to show users an impression that the app follows the most recent trend. Check out how notifications changed from iOS 15 to iOS 16. 


Lock Screen Customization

Even though users could set their lock screens until iOS 15, iOS 16 is more interesting, since it allows users to set multiple lock screens, and they can also choose the fonts and colors of texts. One screen may show today’s date and weather, while another can show today’s event and fitness. Moreover, the photos used for a lock screen can be positioned in front of the time and widgets, so users can create a cubic effect rather than remaining with a plain and flat style. Up until iOS 15, what users can customize was a photo or an image they would like to see on their lock screens, but from iOS 16, they have more various choices and styles. On the same notion as push notifications, it is necessary to update the app’s screenshots, and for photoshop apps, it might be an idea to show how the images created with the app can be used for this new type of lock screen.  


More About Widgets

Widgets have been convenient tools for iPhone users since they showed the essential information from various apps at a glance. Yet they were not able to appear on the lock screen up until now. Apple allowed users to add widgets not only on their home screen but also on their lock screen with the iOS 16 update, and Apple opened the door to widgets responsive to 3rd party developers, meaning, any app can be positioned on users’ lock screens and be exposed more. WWDC 2022’s Design Award Winner, Slopes, has already adopted this change and announced their app will be available as a widget on the lock screen with the upcoming update. It may depend on what kind of app you are developing, but the widget availability can be a strong USP from now on. 

Resource: Slopes’ Twitter


The iOS 16 update seems to bring many changes to iPhone users and app developers. Though the majority of the update does not directly affect ASO practices, it is crucial to note where Apple is heading from now on. Just as Apple’s iOS 16 slogan, “Personal is Powerful,” Apple does concentrate on the interaction between the users and their phones and seems to provide more and more features with which users can create customized, “my own iPhone. 

App development may have to be on the same notion. The importance of personalization is not just what Apple aims for in the future; it rather is a trend overall marketing process.  Hopefully, this article has served to address that such a notion is indeed in place and generate ideas for your app’s new features and ASO direction. Further discussion is always welcome and please check out other articles. 

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