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Rapid Response, Apple's take on Android security patches, is finally here

Rapid Response will provide faster protection against vulnerabilities and exploits.

Published onMay 2, 2023

iPhone 13 Pro apple logo
Gary Sims / Android Authority
  • Rapid Security Response updates are slowly rolling out to Apple devices.
  • These updates are similar to Android’s security patches that deliver fixes to exploits and vulnerabilities.
  • Owners of iPhones, Macs, and iPads no longer have to wait for bigger software updates to get these fixes.

Last year, Apple announced Rapid Security Response updates. The company has been testing the updates ever since the beta release of iOS 16, iPadOS 16, and macOS 13 Ventura. Now Rapid Response is exiting the beta and slowly trickling out to Apple products.

Devices running on iOS 16.4.1, iPadOS 16.4.1, and macOS 13.3.1 are starting to get Apple’s first-ever urgent security update system (via iMore). These updates are smaller patches aimed at closing up vulnerabilities and solving exploits before hackers can leverage them. Previously, these fixes would be included in larger software updates, but this new system makes it possible for Apple to fix security concerns faster.

Although this is something new for Apple owners, Android owners should already be familiar with this concept. Rapid Response is essentially Apple’s take on Android security patches.

If the update has yet to appear on your iPhone, Mac, or iPad, you’ll need to visit your updates page. For iPhones and iPads, you’ll want to go to Settings > General > Software Update > Automatic Updates. From there, you’ll just need to toggle the automatic updates to on and it should start to download.

If you’re using a Mac, the process will be a little different. You’ll need to go to Apple menu > System Settings > General > Software Update. When you click on Software Update, the update should download as it did with the iPhone and iPad.

While it may have taken a while for this concept to come over to the Apple side, it’s better late than never. Especially as cyber threats continue to grow every day. It’s good to see Apple owners finally enjoy some of the security benefits that come with having an Android.

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