The start of this month saw Apple pack a week full of presentations, labs and reveals at their Worldwide Developers Conference in San Jose, California. The headline show, the company Keynote, saw Apple reveal many exciting changes including a Mac redesign, software updates and the end of iTunes. Buckle up, they’re moving forward and FAST.
Software updates to iOS 13 mean that the long-anticipated Dark Mode will be available alongside apps that launch 2x as fast. The Reminders app will be seriously refreshed so you’ll be able to set prompts to pop up next time you’re messaging a specific person. Remind us to thank Apple when we go to text that certain someone after a few too many cocktails! You’ll also be able to set your phone to send unknown callers to voicemail and search all transcribed podcasts by text that was spoken.
Your AirPods weren’t forgotten either. You’ll be able to reply to messages instantly with Siri and link with your HomePod, Apples home connectivity system, as soon as you walk through your door. Your photos will now be far better organised and Apple will remove clutter such as duplications as well as offering better editing systems so you can now rotate a video directly in the photos app. The real hard hitting changes also come in the form of 8 new stock wallpapers and new Animoji and Memoji stickers. The volume indicator will also look a little different with this update. It’s now a bar much like the brightness and volume indicator you find on your swipe down control panel.
Exclusive iPadOS 13 updates are also coming, showcasing a new iPad home screen layout, multi-window app capability as well as a new three-finger gestures for cut-copy-paste and a three-finger swipe to undo. Apple is also allowing you to use your iPad as a second display for your Mac in a feature that will be known as Sidecar.
The Mac was not forgotten this time around with Apple revealing the new modular Mac Pro, marking the return of the cheese grater aesthetic that has also been lovingly referred to as the ‘trash can’. The stainless steel design was chosen, Apple says, for functionality and ease of access to all components. The most expandable and powerful Mac ever made holds a 5,000 Pro Display XDR and can be mounted with wheels to move easily. It will set you back anywhere from $5,000 to $50,000 when fully maxed out and you’ll want to sit down for this one, because the stand will set you back another $999.
The Mac software has also seen a drastic overhaul with Apple introducing MacOS Catalina. Say goodbye to iTunes which has now been split into three new apps: Apple Music, Apple Podcasts and Apple TV. The new ‘Voice Control’ feature will also mean you’ll be able to edit text, open apps and files, scroll around the interface, select items, share photos and more on your laptop, without touching a key!
While they’re at it, Apple announced console controllers for AppleTV that will be compatible with Xbox One and Playstation Dualshock and Apple Watch updates turning your watch into more and more of an independent device. Security is also a serious focus with Apple unveiling a new single-sign on unified ID platform alongside camera and location services updates.
Overwhelmed? We’re not exaggerating when we say the list of updates feels endless. It will be an interesting few months to see the changes roll out and experience them ourselves. Hey Siri…Can you set a reminder to update ALL of our devices?