Apple’s annual conference for developers, WWDC is now over. The top announcements included iOS 10, macOS Sierra, watchOS 3.0 and a new tvOS. Apple also introduced a more powerful version of Siri, Messages app at the conference.
Here’s a quick look at the top announcements from WWDC 2016 keynote:
The developer preview of iOS 10 is now available to iOS Developer Program members at developer.apple.com. Just like with iOS 9, a public beta program will be available to iOS users in July at beta.apple.com.
Messages will be revamped in iOS 10. New features include animations like balloons, confetti or fireworks that can take over an entire screen to celebrate a special occasion, invisible ink to send a message which is only revealed after a friend swipes over it, and handwritten notes.
iOS 10 will automatically suggest emojis that can replace a particular word in a message. Tapback is the new feature which let users respond with a simple tap. Users can also send rich links to play content inline (even Apple Music links or open entire articles) without actually leaving the conversation thread.
Apple is also opening up Messages to developers so they can create apps, other experiences within Messages to let users do more in the chat threads. Messages will also support GIFs, ability to edit photos. There’s also a feature called Digital Touch Mode, where users can create fun videos/photos and send them in the app.
Siri will be open to third-party developers via the SDK, and developers can now create commands letting Siri interact with their app. Users will be able to call for a cab in Uber or book a table on OpenTable, by using the Hey Siri command.
Apple’s SiriKit will help developers design their apps to work with the voice-assistant for messaging, phone calls, photo search, ride booking, personal payments and workouts.
Apple Maps will now have a slide up tab showing time to work, calendar appointments etc. Apple is adding its ‘proactive assistance’ feature to Maps to help figure out a user’s route, based on appointments or daily routine.
Apple Maps also gets new extensions, and again third-party apps can be integrated with Maps. In the US, apps like OpenTable will integrate bookings right into Maps, and services like Uber and Lyft will also be integrated.
Photo gets an upgrade in iOS 10 to become smarter and help people find photos from forgotten occasions. Memories as Apple calls it, will scan photos and videos and finds forgotten events, trips and people, and puts them in all in one collection. Memory Movie is an automatically edited movie with theme music, titles and cinematic transitions.
iOS 10 will see Apple use a technology called Differential Privacy to help discover the usage patterns of a large number of users without compromising individual privacy. Apple says this will help them improve QuickType and emoji suggestions, Spotlight deep link suggestions and Lookup Hints in Notes. For a full list of iOS 10 features, read more here.
OS X will now be called macOS and the latest version is named macOS Sierra. The biggest feature in macOS Seirra is Siri, which will now be integrated natively into the desktop platform.
On macOS, Siri can be used to “look up information, find documents, pin or drag and drop search results, and even adjust system preferences”. Technically, any file is a just a voice command away.
Uers can now have their desktop and documents across all macOS and iOS devices. They will even be able to copy paste stuff from one to the other via the Universal Clipboard.
Apple is also pushing tabs as a feature across macOS apps. So you can now have multiple tabs on every apps from maps to mail, thus improving multi-tasking. Picture-in-picture option for web videos, which will allow users to resize, drag and pin video to any corner of your screen.
Apple Pay is also making its debut on Mac and will intelligently link to the iPhone’s TouchID for authentication. Similarly, Auto Unlock will unlock a Mac if you walk up to it wearing your authenticated Apple Watch.
Apple is also working on optimised storage to free up space when your Mac starts getting full by storing infrequently used items in iCloud and reminding you to delete used app installers, and even clearing out duplicate downloads, caches, logs and more.
Apple watchOS 3 brings features like new Dock, improved fitness and health capabilities like Breathe app for deep breathing exercises to reduce stress.
The Activity app now includes the ability to share, compare and compete your fitness goals with friends as well as enables wheelchair users to close their Activity rings. Wheelchair pushes contribute to all-day calorie goals, the “time to stand” reminder is now “time to roll” and there are dedicated wheelchair-specific workouts.
Uers can access the new Dock with their recent and favorite apps. Right from the Dock or the watch face, users can launch the app instantly. New Scribble feature for better customer replies to Messages on Apple Watch. SOS will allow for a call to emergency services and notify emergency contacts.
Users can also now add complications to the Photo, Motion or Timelapse watch faces.
The new update to Apple TV brings an updated Siri to tvOS. On Apple TV Siri can now Siri is topic search for movies based on themes, etc, YouTube Search, Live tune-in and Manage HomeKit also. Single sign-on for Pay TV apps for US customers is now supported.
Swift Playground App
The app is meant to spur an interest in coding in young children. Swift Playgrounds makes coding easy and almost game-like with an interactive interface for the easy-to-learn Swift programming language from Apple.
The app includes programming lessons where “students write code to guide onscreen characters through an immersive graphical world, solving puzzles and mastering challenges as they learn core coding concepts”. And there are built-in templates to encourage users to express their creativity and create real programmes.
It has been developed for use by first time coders. So using the Multi-Touch iPad interface, they can create entire programmes with only a few taps and there is a new intuitive coding keyboard with additional characters just a swipe away. The keyboard even has a predictive bar, presenting the most likely next commands or values based on context. There is also a library of common coding snippets to create new code with little or no typing.