Apple has released the iOS 6.1 update for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. The iOS 6.1 update introduces a few minor – but welcome – changes to the software.

The sudden release follows our news that iOS 6.1 Beta 5 that Apple recently released to developers was secretly the GM (Golden Master) version. 

It turns out that news was correct, and that Apple swiftly decided to turn the beta version into the release version.

iOS 6.1 introduces a range of new feautres. iTunes Match subscribers will be pleased to hear that the ability to download individual tracks (removed in the iOS 6.0 update) has been re-introduced.

iOS users based in the United States can now use Siri to book cinema tickets. This uses the Fandango service, which requires users to install the Fandango app. Siri prompts users to install the app if they want to purchase tickets.

iOS 6.1 Software Update

Passbook has had a slight tweak, in that it guides users to the App Store selection of Passbook-enabled software. This introduction screen no longer dissapears after you install the first digital pass. Apple is clearly trying to promote Passbook software.

Finally there's a new button in the Advertising section marked Reset Advertising Identifier. Not many people are aware of the Advertising Identifier so Apple has a handy description:

"iOS 6 introduces the Advertising Identifier, a non-permanent, non-personal, device identifier, that apps will use to give you more control over advertisers’ ability to use tracking methods. You can reset a device’s Advertising Identifier at any time. And, if you choose to limit ad tracking, apps are not permitted to use the Advertising Identifier to serve you targeted ads. In the future all apps will be required to use the Advertising Identifier. However, until then you may still receive targeted ads."

Finally there are a bunch of general security fixes introduced in iOS 6.1. iOS device owners can update their device using Settings > General > Software Update or by connecting the iOS device to iTunes on a Mac/PC and choosing Check for Update. Apple has instructions of updating iOS devices on the Apple Support Site

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