SF Symbol Changes in iOS 15.1

Introduction

When examining the iOS 15.2 simulators in Xcode 13.2 beta 1, I noticed that there had been a few changes to SF Symbols since iOS 15.0. After testing on real devices I discovered that these had been added in iOS 15.1. There was no Xcode release that included an iOS 15.1 simulator, so I hadn’t noticed the change until iOS 15.2.

  • SF Symbols v2.0 available in iOS/iPadOS/tvOS/Mac Catalyst 14.0, watchOS 7.0 and macOS 11.0
  • SF Symbols v2.1 available in iOS/iPadOS/tvOS/Mac Catalyst 14.2, watchOS 7.1 and macOS 11.0
  • SF Symbols v2.2 available in iOS/iPadOS/tvOS/Mac Catalyst 14.5, watchOS 7.4 and macOS 11.3
  • SF Symbols v3.0 available in iOS/iPadOS/tvOS/Mac Catalyst 15.1, watchOS 8.0 and macOS 12.0
  • SF Symbols v3.1 available in iOS/iPadOS/tvOS 15.1, Mac Catalyst 15.0, watchOS 8.1 and macOS 12.0

Changes in SF Symbols 3.1

There are relatively few changes this time:

  • Renamed symbols 2 symbols have been renamed
  • Hierarchical / Palette rendering 9 new symbols support the hierarchical and palette render modes. 2 existing symbols with incorrect layers have been fixed
  • Localized variants 4 symbols are named to suggest that they support right-to-left localizations, but 2 of them don’t actually change appearance

Added Symbols

There are 11 new symbols in iOS 15.1:

bolt.ring.closed
platter.filled.top.iphone
platter.filled.bottom.iphone
platter.filled.top.and.arrow.up.iphone
platter.filled.bottom.and.arrow.down.iphone
square.3.layers.3d.down.right
square.3.layers.3d.down.left
square.3.layers.3d.down.forward
square.3.layers.3d.down.backward
text.justify.leading
text.justify.trailing
iOS 15.1 System Images ‘Added’ collection in Adaptivity v8.2 on iPhone 13 Pro in monochrome, hierarchical and palette render modes

Renamed Symbols

Two symbols have been renamed: text.justifyleft is now text.justify.left and text.justifyright is now text.justify.right.

iOS 15.1 System Images ‘Renamed’ collection and context menu in Adaptivity v8.2 on iPhone 13 Pro

Hierarchical and Palette Symbols

The screenshot above in the “Added Symbols” sections shows the 9 new symbols which support hierarchical and palette render modes.

iOS 15.0 System Images with layer assignment bugs in Adaptivity v8.2 on iPhone 13 Pro
iOS 15.1 System Images with layer assignment fixes in Adaptivity v8.2 on iPhone 13 Pro

Localized Variants

Apple’s naming conventions use words such as leading, trailing, forward and backward for symbols that have right-to-left localized variants. In general (but not always), symbols with words such as left and right do not change. There are many symbols which come with both fixed left/right and localized leading/trailing versions.

iOS 15.1 System Images localized variants in Adaptivity v8.2 on iPhone 13 Pro
iOS 15.1 System Images localized variants in Adaptivity v8.2 on iPhone 13 Pro
iOS 15.1 System Images in Left-to-Right and Right-to-Left layout in Adaptivity v8.2 on iPhone 13 Pro

Resources

WWDC 2021: 10097, What’s new in SF Symbols

Adaptivity

Adaptivity has many other features in addition to browsing SF Symbols. It is primarily a tool to visualize the different window sizes, layout margins, readable content guides, bar heights and Dynamic Type sizes that a modern, adaptive, iOS app uses when running on different devices and iPad multitasking sizes. There are also views for browsing System Colors, System Fonts and System Materials, and a view for exploring iPadOS Pointer Interactions. In iOS/iPadOS 15 you can also configure UISheetPresentationController options for modally-presented view controllers.

Other Articles That You Might Like

I have written articles on How iPad Apps Adapt to the New 8.3" iPad Mini, How iOS Apps Adapt to the various iPhone 12 Screen Sizes, Bringing Adaptivity to Mac Catalyst, How to Switch Your iOS App and Scene Delegates for Improved Testing and the View Controller Presentation Changes in iOS 13.

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Geoff Hackworth

Independent and freelance software developer for iPhone, iPad and Mac