Apple iPhone users will soon be able to edit and unsend messages following a software update later this year.
The next version of its iOS software will enable users to unsend texts in iMessages for up to 15 minutes after sending it, the company said.
Apple’s iOS 16 will also include a redesigned lock screen that can be more broadly customisable with different fonts, photo filters and interactive notifications.
The update to the Messages app was one of dozens confirmed by the tech giant at its annual Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) event in California.
WWDC is an annual platform used each year to preview new versions of software powering Apple’s most popular devices, including the iPhone, Apple Watch, iPad and Mac computers.
What else has Apple announced?
Apple said the new iOS software will include an update to Apple Pay called Apple Pay Later, which would enable users to split the cost of an Apple Pay purchase into four payments over six weeks with no interest or additional fees to be paid. However, this is being introduced in the US only at first.
The company also announced a new, redesigned MacBook Air laptop and a new MacBook Pro, both of which would have the second generation of Apple’s own-built computer chip, the M2, which the firm says dramatically increases power and performance.
Among the other announcements was the launch of a new personal safety tool called safety check, which will allow users to review and reset accounts and data access granted to others, including location sharing for situations such as leaving an abusive relationship.
The technology giant shared more details on its previously confirmed plans to move away from typed passwords, announcing a new feature called passkeys to replace typing out a password with authentication either through a fingerprint or a face scan when logging in on an Apple device.
But despite strong rumours suggesting the company’s first augmented reality headset might be previewed, there was no mention of the technology or any such device during the keynote.
Apple chief executive Tim Cook said he was “confident” that the firm’s “incredible products and innovative platforms will inspire developers to do the very best work of their lives”.
Ru Bhikha, mobiles expert at Uswitch.com, said: “The release of iOS 16 promises the ability to customise the phone’s lock screen to an incredible degree, allowing users to change every aspect of the look of their screen.
“Letting users have different lock screens for different purposes like work or personal is an interesting idea, and highlights notifications that are appropriate to the current setting.
“Introducing the ability to edit and delete messages you’ve just sent could be a godsend, especially for those times you’ve sent your boss a text meant for your partner – taking a page out of the Slack playbook.
“Apple Pay Later is a timely update to the wallet amid the cost-of-living crisis, and will allow users to spread large purchases over four smaller interest-free payments.”