The Worldwide Developers Conference 2018 keynote took place on Monday and Apple covered a lot! I’ve spoken about the key features here and focused on the ones that interested me most.
David Attenborough narrated a video showing ‘the developer’ (depicted as a species) attending WWDC and it was brilliant. I was laughing throughout the video and it was really well produced. Apple usually features an opening clip before conferences nowadays and this has to be one of my favourites.
This year will see the release of the latest version of iOS (which is 12). The update will be available to all devices that currently support iOS 11.
Performance: Apple say they have optimised the stress load within iOS so that apps launch quicker and the CPU reacts a lot faster when needed.
Augmented Reality: A new file format for VR called USDZ was announced that will work on websites, within iMessage, emails and more. This will allow us to more easily view 3D objects on our devices and even use VR within the online shopping environment. Something that I liked the look of is Apple’s new app ‘Measure’. This will allow you to use AR to measure things in real-life! It’s an AR ruler for your smart phone.
Photos: iOS 12 will see search results improved in photos including memories, places, activities, events or categories. The sharing tools have been improved as well based on these events so you can more seamlessly share your images.
Siri: The new update will allow Siri to do much more for us later this year. Shortcuts will enable Siri to access features of apps you have on your phone. Apple used ‘Tile’ as an example at WWDC saying ‘Hey Siri, I’ve lost my keys’. I’m looking forward to seeing which integrations I’ll be able to use when iOS 12 is released. You can also create your own shortcuts and Apple even has an application they have developed for this. A really cool example they showed was a ‘heading home’ command which got driving directions, text a housemate to say when they’d be home, set the thermostat and fan settings remotely and then played a favourite radio station!
CarPlay: Now supports third party map applications so you can choose to use things like Google Maps and Waze.
Distractions: Do Not Disturb During Bedtime will hide notifications throughout the night. When you press on DND in control centre you have many more controls including a timed setting. Instant Tuning is going to allow us to choose how notifications appear on your iPhone. To do this you press on a notification and choose your options. This way you could bypass certain apps just to the notification centre and not the home screen. Apple are also introducing support for grouped notifications from apps which will free up the screen massively! Activity Report to show you how you use your phone will be available in iOS 12 and this will help you to manage what you are doing on your iPhone. This will allow you an insight into your usage and Apple even have enabled App Limits where you can set yourself a certain amount of time on apps within a day. I’m definitely going to be using this!
Messages: In iOS 12 Apple are enhancing the messages app further including more characters on Animoji and also tongue support! They’ve also made them more personal by adding Memoji, a customisable 3D emoji set. It’s kind of like Sims for emojis! Apple have also added effects in the camera within messages to apply filters, text, stickers and more!
FaceTime: NOW SUPPORTS UP TO 32 PEOPLE IN ONE CALL! This is absolutely nuts but I love it! Finally can FaceTime more than one person at a time. It allows you to join calls within messages with groups you have set up. The tiles automatically react to who is talking and expands that person’s video towards the front. They have integrated stickers and effects as well to make the calls fun and interesting. Woohoo!
Health & Fitness: You can now compete with your friends who you share your activity data with. Apple have now added new workout types as well for yoga and hiking as well as more intuitive activity tracking. Automatic workout detection is something I’m looking forward to. This will enable my watch to track when I go on a walk or run even if I forget to start the workout manually. It also detects when you have finished as well!
Walkie-Talkie: This enables you to connect with the friends you choose. It works on cellular and Wi-fi and allows a real-time quick audio message. Just like a walkie-talkie.
Siri Shortcuts: The features of iOS are brought over to Apple Watch and you can access the shortcuts you have set up. It also allows third party app integration on the Siri watch face.
“Hey, Siri”: This is no longer needed. If you lift your wrist up the watch automatically knows you want to ask it something. No need to say ‘Hey, Siri’ anymore.
Interactive Notifications: Paying with Apple Pay for extending your parking meter and for making table reservations are just a couple of features enabled with third party interactive notification support.
Safari: Apple have integrated a simplified version of Safari which will allow you to use your watch for simple web searches when watchOS 5 is released. This is kind of like the ‘reader’ view/mode available in iOS and macOS Safari at the moment.
Dolby Atmos: This is being integrated into Apple TV 4K and tvOS to make audio more immersive. This makes Apple TV the first provider of both Dolby approved and certified video and audio. You will need Dolby approved devices including television and speaker systems though.
Television Partners: Apple is partnering with a number of companies around the world to enable live streaming of channels and on-demand programs. Single Sign-on has been changed to Zero Sign-on where Apple will securely and automatically unlock apps and channels if you’re connected to their broadband/internet network.
Aerial Screensavers: You’ll be able to see every aerial location with a tap of the Siri remote. They have launched new locations and screensavers. I can’t wait to see these on the new update of tvOS. The screensavers are one of my favourite bits of the Apple TV and Apple have even introduced shots of Earth from Space in the new update! You can also scroll through the aerial shots using the Siri remote.
Dark Mode: This is a new feature in Mojave which allows the full system to enter a ‘night mode’ which has been seen on Apple TV and in apps such as Twitter. It looks really cool and I think I’m going to use this a lot when the update is released!
Dynamic Desktop: Your desktop now changes throughout the day and allows subtle differences in the desktop image to transition from day to night depending on the time.
Desktop Stacks: All of the content of your desktop can be arranged by stacks and organised by file type etc. This will be a nice way to have the desktop look a lot cleaner.
Finder: Meta data is now fully visible alongside images in finder so you know the camera you took the photo on as well as full image specifications. You can rotate images directly in the finder window as well. It also has some cool features such as automatic actions and PDF creation. This could be used to watermark PDFs with a single click.
Screen Shots: These have been enhanced like on iOS where a thumbnail appears in the bottom corner. This allows you to mark up the screen shot quickly without having to open it up in Preview first. You can also record selected areas of the screen in video shots. After taking a screen shot you can drop this instantly into applications or save it where you like.
Privacy: Apple have really knuckled down on privacy in this update. Safari is one app in particular which has been improved to stop websites tracking you. Facebook is directly targeted in this update where they are shutting down the ‘like, comment, share’ fields when you’re on other websites. Device tracking as well is something that Apple have made more difficult by removing what information data companies can see about your machine to identify you specifically. These things include device configuration, fonts, installed applications etc. Now your device will look more like everyone else’s to these data companies, which will make it a lot harder to identify individuals.
Mac App Store: Apple have totally redesigned the Mac App Store for the new operating system. It looks much better than the previous one and it supports video playback in app previews as well as tips/tutorials on apps you already own. The Mac App Store is also welcoming some new adopters of the platform including Adobe and Windows later this year for their software distribution. I’m looking forward to seeing companies like Adobe on the Mac App Store in hope that the full Creative Cloud suite will be available there in the near future!
The keynote focused solely on iOS, watchOS, tvOS and macOS this year. No hints or announcements with hardware which sometimes happens. I’m looking forward to the software updates especially the multi-user FaceTime! This has been a long time coming!
What do you think of WWDC 2018? Any features you are looking forward to in particular? Please let me know in the comments below! Thanks as always for reading and have a great day! 🖥