Tech Note

With iOS 16, iCloud Shared Photo Library won’t be available.

The iCloud Shared Photo Library feature for iOS 16 will now be available “later this year,” rather than on September 12 when the mobile operating system update debuts (via AppleInsider). The message regarding the delay was added at some point this week, according to an archived copy of the iOS 16 webpage.

When it happens, the feature will let you to automatically share a selection of images with up to five other people. You will be able to choose to share all the photos in your personal library, photos taken after a certain date, or photos that include a certain individual.

It’s not all that rare for Apple to introduce a new version of its software without including all of its capabilities; for example, iOS 15 launched last year without SharePlay, Universal Control, and improved Find My support for AirPods. The features were subsequently gradually released in point releases over the following few months. Though the iPadOS 16 upgrade for Apple’s tablets has been postponed and will instead come as iPadOS 16.1, iOS 16 doesn’t appear to include as many features that are getting delayed.

It’s conceivable that Apple’s decision to release iPadOS 16 on its own schedule contributed to the feature’s delay; after users set it up on their phones, they might be perplexed as to why it didn’t appear on their iPads or Macs (Apple’s website states that macOS Ventura will be released sometime in October). Another possibility is that the corporation is simply being extra cautious given that the feature deals with irreplaceable photos. In response to The Verge’s request for comment regarding its revised plans for the Shared Photo Library, Apple did not immediately respond.