Another year, another jam-packed Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) is taking place at San Jose, California. Its annual keynote address has officially kicked off and we are to expect tweaks and some updates to iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS. Here’s a look back at the major highlights of this wonderful event.
Apple had a lot of updates on iOS 12. They mentioned that they are more focused on performance and speed enhancements of the latest version of Apple’s operating system, rather than new features. Apple also said that iOS 12 will support and work on iOS devices going back to 2013 or on all of the devices which iOS 11 worked. They say that the latest operating system will make old devices, like the iPhone 6s, work considerably faster. Aside from this, there are a lot of major changes. Here are some of the features they mentioned during the WWDC;
Apple’s ARKit 2.0
This updated ARKit 2.0 framework in iOS 12 will allow developers to build even more engaging augmented reality experience. ARKit 2.0 now supports more than users who will all see the same scene and space on their device and be able to share augmented reality experiences to other people. Apple also created a new AR file format called USDZ, which is developed alongside Pixar. ARKit 2.0 also gets better facial recognition and 3D object tracking among others.
A new app called, Measure
Apple created a new measuring app, called Measure, which allows the users to measure about just anything they want in augmented reality. It utilizes AR to let you draw the lines of an object in the real world using your smart phone’s camera. It then gives you the physical dimensions of that object.
A trending new feature of Apple now is the Group FaceTime. Just like the group video chat on Facebook, Group FaceTime on iOS allows the user to FaceTime with 32 people at once!
Siri gets smarter
The smart and handy assistant of Apple will get a major change as Siri gets smarter to keep up with more than 10 million requests of users per month. This update allows more customization for Siri. Aside from this, she will be able to give more intelligent suggestions about what you want to do next or what you are looking for. Plus a new feature called Siri Shortcuts allows the users to create specific commands to trigger internal application features. One example from the presentation is an “I lost my keys,” app which triggers the Tile app to assist you in finding them. “Shortcuts” also has its own app that lets users create a chain of actions with just a single command.
Apple Photos gets an upgrade
With the iOS cameras getting better in each upgrade, Apple Photos received an ultimate revamp in iOS 12, having more refined searches driven by an AI. You can now search through photos by content, location, people, events, and more. It also has new a new feature of having personalized suggestions and automatic sharing prompts, based on the faces of the people saved on your photos. In other words, iOS 12 recommends people with whom you maybe want to share the photos and videos via iMessage.
Animoji and Memoji
This recently added feature of iPhone, which debuted on iPhone X is expected to have more Animojis, even more, realistic ones to use in messaging. Also, a brand new feature called, Memoji will be added. Memojis are cartoon caricatures of the user’s face that functions like the Bitmojis of Snapchat or the live avatars of Xboxes. Augmented reality is sure getting a lot of appearances on iOS 12!
This is Apple’s counterpart to the Android Dashboard. Apple’s Screentime allows the user to know basic stats like the time you spent on your phone. One specific feature of this app lets the user create time limits of usage for an app. This is helpful if you spend so much time on Instagram or playing games.
Other local applications on Apple are not missed out and will also be getting individual updates. Apple Books is getting a total redesign and name change that will fit in with Apple’s new convention. Apple News is getting a story selection feature with a ‘real editorial team’ to filter stories in response to the phenomenon of fake news. Voice Memos will be appearing on iOS 12 and recordings can sync through iCloud.
Other amazing updates from the iOS 12 are the following:
Apple Watch OS 5
Apple claimed that Apple Watch had grown 60 percent since last year because of the added features and improvements. So far, the biggest function of the Apple Watch is fitness. A new feature called Competitions allows the user to challenge friends to move more than you in a course of seven days. There are more workout types in the update like yoga and hiking, and users can now enjoy an automatic tracking of popular workouts. An instant audio-messaging app called, Walkie-Talkie is added and works via Wi-Fi or cellular.
The new version of Mac, called Mojave features a Dark Mode that turns the screen – window borders and menu options included, darker. Basically, it turns everything on your Macbook darker, more like the night mode we see now in smartphones and apps. A new application called, Desktop Stacks, takes all your files from your desktop and organizes them into a neat file for easy identification. Safari will now shut down tracking functions of social media buttons and will limit the information a user can give to companies. This is in light of the recent Facebook data tracking scandal.
Other features include a sidebar in the Finder window that gives you options specific to the file you select and a Gallery view which allows the user to get bigger previews of images and other media without opening the Preview or any app.
Since the brand new Apple 4K TV just debuted last September 2017, there are not many updates on tvOS 12. However, Apple added a Dolby Atmos capability to the new Apple TV for a surround sound effect. The TV applications now has over 100 channels, including more live news and live sports for the users. Moreover, the iOS Control Center will be getting an Apple TV control tile so users can easily operate their Apple set-top box from their Apple phones.