Apple Releases iPhone 14 Pro/Max Smart Island live guides

Apple’s iOS 16.1 is currently in beta testing, which includes support for the live activity API. This API allows developers to add real-time notifications to the lock screen or Smart Island. As iOS 16.1 continues to be tested, Apple has now published a complete design guide for Live Events, which outlines specifications for developers to add Live Events to their apps.

For Apple's iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max, the new "Smart Island" design of the two new phones allows real-time activity to be displayed at the top of the screen. Other models can be displayed on the lock screen. Apple officially lists the following requirements:

  • Provides real-time activities for tasks and real-time events with a defined start and end
  • Present only the most important content.
  • Update live events only when new content is available, and alert users only when attention is required.
  • Avoid displaying sensitive information in live events.
  • Avoid using real-time activity to display ads or promotions.
  • Give the user control over starting and ending a live event.
  • Make sure that clicking on the live event will open the app in the correct location.
  • Consider removing live activity from the lock screen after the lock screen is over.
  • Ensure unified information and design for compact presentations in Smart Island.
  • Create consistent layouts between compact and expanded presentations.
  • Consider using a consistent design across your lock screen and extended presentations.
  • Adapt to different screen sizes and live event presentations.
  • Think carefully before using custom background colors and opacity on your lock screen.
  • Reconcile the content's corner radius with the live activity's corner radius.
  • Use standard margins to ensure that your content is legible.
  • Choose a color to personalize your lock screen.
  • Supports dark mode and an always-on display.
  • Use animations sparingly and only to draw attention to content updates.

Apple has also listed three different designs to consider when creating a live event for the iPhone 14 Pro/Pro Max.

Live events in third-party apps will be available this fall with the official release of iOS 16.1. The update is currently available in developer and public beta testing.

You can find the complete live event guide on the Apple developer website.

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