Apple’s Worldwide Developer’s Conference (WWDC) came out of the gates yesterday with some pretty hefty announcements. While I am unable to attend physically or virtually, I will be keeping tabs on the happenings throughout the Conference. Apple will be streaming events from the conference throughout the week on their website at http://www.apple.com/live/2015-june-event/.
iOS 9 – Smarter, faster, smaller
Unlike the change from iOS 6 to 7, iOS 9 proves to be a great improvement, but not necessarily an overhaul. Apple’s new operating system for their iDevices comes with a revamped Siri with more assumptions and integrations. You can now (allegedly) ask Siri to do things such as “Remind me about this when I get to my car,” a phrase that will will notify you about whatever content you’re currently… enjoying. For example, I would use my non-existent iPod to $99.99 laptop stand at Tech Monsters. The barcode scanning app might then give me a result for a less expensive option at Walter’s World Supermarket (yes, those are both fake names.) Asking Siri to remind about this (when I get to my car perhaps?) will set up a GPS-triggered notification. Neat, huh? Siri will also play that one song from that one movie… (okay, you actually have to know the movie title.) Apple Pay gets an upgrade, with availability coming to the UK, and new types of gift/loyalty cards from various establishments. (Quick note: Passbook is renamed to Wallet in this update!) New to this update is Apple’s News app, which is expressly available in the United States, United Kingdom and Australia. The News app provides recommendations from local and world news based on your preferences, similar to YouTube’s recommended videos.
Okay, those are some nice features, but so what? One new app and some slight AI improvements? No. iPad Air 2 will be sporting an experimental feature, split screen. Jot down notes while you surf the web, go through your photos while keeping an eye on your Facebook wall and so much more. What else? Picture-in-picture mode lets you watch a video while reading you e-mail. Amazing app multitasking lets you quickly tweet out the YouTube video you’re watching, or set a reminder when scrolling through Imgur.
The cherry on top, iOS 9 ‘s new updating system provides an extraordinarily smaller (1.3 GB) update size compared to iOS 8’s gargantuan 4.53 GB download. Developer access dropped yesterday and a full release will be coming this fall.
Mac OS X El Capitan
Apple’s newest OS, El Capitan, provides some features to go alongside iOS 9. the Notes app has been revamped to support images (more easily) and web scraping (saving websites to notes.) I didn’t mention the Notes improvement in the iOS recap, mainly because I hate repeating myself. These notes features will be coming to both devices within their respective updates. Safari gets a little easier to use, supporting individual tab muting and “pinned” tabs, both of which are totally not Chrome rip-offs. Spotlight and Mail have smart improvements, for example, Apple Mail can find suggested events and unknown contact info for one-click adding to Calendar and Contacts respectively. Again, not a Gmail rip-off. El Capitan makes up for the lack of a cool name by bringing in similar split screen and multitasking options to your desktop. The most exciting feature must be Metal. Metal is apples new graphic core technology that promises to deliver “enhanced performance and a richer graphical experience.” *3 Mac OS X was released for Developer use yesterday, and will be fully released this fall.
Metal is a new graphics core technology […] delivering enhanced performance and a richer graphical experience. Metal speeds system-level graphics rendering by up to 50 percent.
– Apple Website (www.apple.ca/osx/elcapitan-preview/)
The bits and pieces.
I implore you to read more about this year’s WWDC (links below) because I skipped over some amazing things like Apple Music, and the new Watch update. If there were thing I missed, let’s talk about it on Reddit at /r/simplynerdythings or tweet me @josephwhays.