Use Live Activities in iOS 16.2 and enable frequent updates

Live Activity is a new app-based tile that can be displayed on the lock screen in iOS 16 and keeps you up to date with information. Learn how to use them and how to enable frequent updates.

An iPhone with the new Live Activity Monitor.
Image: apple

Live Activities is a new feature in iOS 16.1 that has been redesigned in iOS 16.2 to allow for more frequent updates. It allows your iPhone to display a live update from a third-party app – either via the dynamic island on the iPhone 14 Pro or on the lock screen. This live tile can show things like scores, weather information, package deliveries, and more.

This type of live information is streamed from the server for the app or updated in the background on the iPhone to bring you the most up-to-date, at-a-glance information from third-party apps.

You can enable Live Activity by following these steps:

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Navigate to the app for which you want to enable the Live Activity feature.
  3. Turn on the live activity switch.

Apple offers this as a toggle option in Settings as it can lead to more battery drain on your devices. When considering your options, consider the trade-off between the most up-to-date information and your battery life.

When finished, the app can use the system setting, but there may be additional settings if Live Activity is enabled through the app itself. Check with the specific app you are using to find out what additional steps should be taken. Most apps show live activity on the lock screen when you exit the app.

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How to enable frequent live activity updates

To enable more frequent updating of Live Activity on your iPhone, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone.
  2. Navigate to an app you want to turn on Live Activity with and tap Live Activity. I’m using the settings for the TV app on iOS.
  3. Enable the option to allow live activity and then enable the option for more frequent updates (Figure A).

Figure A

Updating the Live Activity on iPhone more frequently allows the Live Activity tile to display more up-to-date information.
Updating the Live Activity on iPhone more frequently allows the Live Activity tile to display more up-to-date information.

This feature is not yet built into every app on your device as it was new in iOS 16.2, so it will take some time for developers to adopt this new feature. Your mileage to enable this feature depends on the third-party app.

For a list of some Live Activities-enabled apps on iPhone, see this TechRepublic article: How to view Live Activities on your iPhone Lock Screen with iOS 16.1.

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