Apple held its yearly Worldwide Developers Conference, at San Jose this year. According to Tim Cook, this year’s WWDC would be “the best and biggest WWDC ever”. Well, let’s see about that, Timmy!
This article is a very brief summary of everything announced during the keynote. We’ll be covering a lot of stuff here. Let’s dive in!
HomePod is Apple’s new Siri-powered home speaker. It can intelligently understand the spatial arrangement of a room, and play music without distortion. You can talk to it and ask it to play songs. It can play songs from your own Apple Music library. It also functions as an assistant, whom you can ask about messages, reminders, traffic, and so on.
New macOS will be called macOS High Sierra.
- Safari on macOS High Sierra now becomes the world’s fastest desktop browser.
- Safari comes with Autoplay Blocking which blocks videos from playing automatically.
- Intelligent Tracking Prevention protects your privacy by preventing tracking. That means your amazon.in searches won’t appear in ads on other sites.
- Split view between folder and compose screens.
- Uses less disk storage
- Finding what we want is easier than ever, thanks to the new filters.
- People grouping is new, now synced across devices too.
- Edits made to photos using pro tools like Photoshop, get synced with edits made in Photos.
- New third-party printing services right from inside Photos.
- High Sierra introduces Apple’s new file system, Apple File System or APFS.
- macOS will provide default support for H.265 (High Efficiency Video Coding), and hardware-accelerated support in the newest Macs.
- Metal 2, the next version of graphics API Metal, will be used for graphics, machine learning to accelerate deep–learning algorithms, and for external graphics.
- Metal for VR focuses more on VR content creation. Valve’s Steam VR SDK, Unity’s and Unreal’s engines are coming to High Sierra.
High Sierra will be available as a free upgrade by the end of this year.
- Brighter display
- More RAM — upto 32 and 64 GB on 21.5 and 27 inch models respectively
- 2 x Thunderbold 3 ports
- Improved Graphics which provides 80% upto 200% faster graphics, based on the models.
- Faster processors, faster hard drives, and improved graphics.
New iMac Pro
- The new iMac Pro comes with upto 18-core processors, 4TB hard disk, 128 GB Ram, 4 x Thunderbolt 3, and is officially the most powerful mac ever made.
iOS 11 is Apple’s next instalment of iOS.
- The Messages app has a new app drawer which displays Apps.
- Messages get synced across devices when signing in on new devices, or when deleting messages.
New Person-to-Person payment. You can send and receive payments through iMessages.
- Siri offers multiple results to each query. Also provides translation.
- SiriKit is more powerful, so developers can make use of the new possibilities.
- Siri takes note of content on the screen, and suggests them when typing.
- As Siri learns more and more, that data is synced across all our devices.
- Videos and Photos now take only about half the space due to better formats.
- New Depth API is available to devs which provides access to depth information.
Live Photo editing, along with effects like bounce, loop, and long exposure.
Redesigned control center which provides all options in the same screen. 3D Touch allows for more options to be shown.
Lock Screen + Notification Center merging
Trying to open the Notification Center takes you to the lock screen, where you can swipe up on screen to show other notifications.
- With the new Maps app, access detailed floor plans, place cards, directory, browsing by floor, and search, of malls and airports.
- The app now also shows speed limits and lane guidance to make turns easier.
- Do Not Disturb While Driving is a new mode added to CarPlay. If enabled, it detects if you’re in a car and turns off the screen.
- Those who message you, will get automatic replies that you’re driving.
You can now control each room’s speakers using HomeKit. You can also control home-wide music using your Apple TV through Siri.
See what your friends are listening to, using the New Friends Are Listening To section. MusicKit is also available to developers, to access information about your library.
The App Store flaunts a total redesign. The Today tab is a new way to discover apps every day. There are also dedicated sections for games and non-game apps.
New Vision APIs and Natural Language APIs available to devs, to work with machine learning.
Apple is releasing a new kit for developers, called ARKit, which will help developers develop apps with AR.
The new iPad Pro comes with a 10.5 inch display.
One of the best features of the new iPad Pro is ProMotion, where the refresh rate is much faster than usual, which in turn allows for smoother animations and motions, and reduces the lag when using the Apple Pencil.
iOS 11 works incredibly well with the new iPad Pro.
- The dock supports icons to fill screen width, and can be brought up in any screen.
- Multitasking : Dock icons can be dragged to create multitasking windows. New app-switcher.
- Drag&Drop : iOS 11 brings dragging&dropping to the iPad Pro. Users can drag images, text, or URLs.
- The new Files app lets you access all your files in one place, even from third-party online storage services. The app supports dragging and dropping, during multitasking, and even from the dock after long-pressing.
Support for Apple Pencil is deeply integrated into any app that supports printing or quick look. You can also use the Apple Pencil to draw on recently-captured screenshots, on images in mails, or on copies of documents taken using the new document scanner in the updated Notes app. You can now open your last-edited note, by just tapping on the lock screen using the Apple Pencil. Text written using Apple Pencil is also searchable.
Amazon Prime Video is coming to the TV app and all Apple TVs later this year.
Apple announces the next version of watchOS: watchOS 4.
- Siri powers a new watchface that automatically and intelligently displays the information most relevant to you. For example, travel times in the morning, and home controls at night.
- An update to the Activity app creates monthly challenges based on your past achievements, to be more active.
- You can now do a multiple workouts in a single session.
- watchOS 4 allows communication between gym equipment and the Apple Watch, to avoid mismatch of data.
- The new Music app syncs your music, to listen while working out.
- The new News app lets you glance at top stories and save them for later.
- The Apple Watch can now communicate with third-party devices via Bluetooth.
My take on the event
Apple has clearly done a lot of hard work in creating everything that was announced. No doubt about that. But, as expected, Apple didn’t really have anything ‘wow’-producing.
The sneak peeks of the iMac Pro and HomePod weren’t sneak peeks at all. They gave away all the specs including the pricing. There were unnecessary time-wasting fillers, like the Kaleidoscope and Toy Story watchfaces.
The event was quite long, and they had the interesting parts towards the end. I found the event so boring, that I literally slept through the AR demo. I didn’t find anything really innovative (or maybe I slept through that too…)
It was a normal Apple event.
But, I guess we’ll really know only when we get our hands on everything announced today.
Let’s wait and watch.
Did you watch the event? What did you like? What did you not like? Let me know in the comments!