Today was the much-anticipated Apple WWDC keynote. Thousands of technology buffs from around the world sat in on the event while millions watched online to see the new products and services that Apple has to offer.
For those that weren’t there, we’ve compiled all the essential facts below. (To read highlights from this report, click here.)
Read on, or jump to specific updates:
OS X Mavericks – MacBook Air – Mac Pro – AnkiDrive – iCloud – iOS 7
OS X Mavericks
Over the next 10 years, the names for Apple’s future operating systems will be named after places in California, where the company was built. The first release will be the forthcoming OS X Mavericks. Mavericks is focused on “extending battery life and enhancing responsiveness,” as well as introducing many new applications.
Finder tabs will make sorting your files easier. Tags will also be available on Mavericks, so that you can tag files to find them easier in the Finder sidebar. When saving a document, users can assign it tags to make finding and organizing easier. Finder will place files from different programs together based on their tags. True multiple display support is another new feature: users will be able to use the dock and menu bar independently on each display, operate with multiple full-screen applications simultaneously, and drag applications from screen to screen.
Battery life is a major concern for Mac users. New technologies such as App Nap, which channels power only into actively open applications, as well as other power optimization programs, will potentially increase battery life by up to 72%. Compressed memory allows us to compress inactive memory, resulting in high responsiveness from the computer when executing simple actions like opening a new window or waking up your Mac from sleep mode.
Safari has also been enhanced. The Safari sidebar provides new features like a reading list, which allows you to maneuver from article to article without actually going to the page – and it includes your social media feeds for easy, constant access. Safari uses much less memory and energy than other browsers, such as Chrome and Firefox – great for your battery life. Accelerated scrolling makes scrolling through long web pages or feeds a breeze, providing 60 frames a second for a smooth transition between different parts of a large web page.
The new Safari top sites page features your personalized sidebar, bookmarks and shared links from your social media accounts. One-click bookmarking is another plus that makes saving a webpage quick and easy.
iCloud Keychain remembers your website logins, credit card numbers, and wi-fi networks, but encrypts them to prevent hacking. Safari will autosuggest your login information, including passwords, making logging into websites easier, especially for those who often forget their passwords. When shopping online, Safari will suggest a credit card, leaving only the security code open for the user to put in.
Notifications have also been upgraded – you can view them and respond in the same window without opening a new window in your browser. In addition, any application that sends you push notifications on your phone will also appear on your Mac – such as a fantasy football or news update. Notifications will also appear on your Mac’s lock screen, so you can easily see what you missed while you were away. Application updates will also run automatically while your Mac is asleep, so users do not have to do so manually.
Apple has revamped Maps, too – now Mac users can send directions from their Mac directly to their phone, which will appear as a notification on the user’s lock screen. The user only has to swipe open the notification, and the directions will open up immediately.
Calendars now has unlimited scrolling – i.e., you now get one giant calendar that goes on forever. The new version of Calendars also features weather and travel time, so you can keep tardiness to a minimum and dress accordingly.
iBooks is finally coming to the Mac, giving users access to 1.8 million books. The iBooks textbooks are interactive, allowing students to do their work right on their screen. Users can adjust font and type size, as well as use night mode for late night reading in dark places.
Airport Extreme Base Stations are now available to provide users with wi-fi anywhere. These small, 4.5 by 2 inch devices also have room for a Time Capsule and have several new features, including Beamforming, a feature that sends the signal directly to an antenna array, increasing wi-fi performance. The new MacBook Air is available in two sizes, 11 or 13 inches. Both are available with either 128GB or 256GB of storage and are at least $100 cheaper than previous models – and both models are available as of today. The new MacBook Air is faster, more efficient and more responsive than previous models, providing users with a new, easy MacBook experience.
“The future of a pro desktop,” says Apple, features something “truly revolutionary, truly radical.” The processor is built around a new unified thermal Intel Xeon core, providing more than double the performance output of the older Mac Pro and the fastest ECC memory to date, at 1866MHz, on a four-channel controller and 60GBps bandwidth. New generation flash now runs 1.25GBps read and 1.0GBps writes, up to 2.5 times faster than any flash ever built and 10 times faster than any Mac Pro before. Thunderbolt 2 allows for 20GBps throughput, 6 devices per port and is backwards compatible with Thunderbolt 1. Thunderbolt 2 is twice as fast as Thunderbolt 1, which was already the fastest of its kind. Dual workstation GPUs provide 4096 stream processors with 384 bit memory buses and 528 GBps of total bandwidth, all equating to a 2.5 times faster experience. All of these features are packed into an iO one eighth of the size of previous models, allowing easy transportation. This is the “future of the pro desktop” and will beavailable later this year.
AnkiDrive is a video-game-like application that allows users to control small cars that “think just like we do.” From your iOS device, you can control a car that “thinks” 500 times per second. The cars adjust their speed and scan the track to decide their next move. They steer themselves and detect their surroundings to maneuver around other obstacles. Every second, the car can perform thousands of different capabilities based on its surroundings. Cars can be given instructions such as blocking other cars, as well as enabling weapons to destroy what is in their path. The creator of AnkiDrive says “this is a video game in the real world.” He then went on to say “we are bringing video games to life on the floor of your living room.”
New to iCloud is iWork, a new application that allows users to create “beautiful documents right in your browser.” Users can change fonts, formatting and even drag-and-drop images from their desktop right into the document. The text reformats itself around the image, saving the user both time and effort. iWork also works on Windows, so it is not limited to just Mac users. A preview of iWork is available today, but will expand to all users later this year.
Apple has now “sold over 600 million iOS devices.” Experian studies show that iPhone users use their phones 50% more than Android users. Also, 73% of iOS users said they were “very satisfied” with their phones, while only 49% of Android users said the same.
Today, Apple announced iOS 7: “iOS 7 is the biggest change to iOS since the introduction of the iPhone. It’s packed with new features, and an amazing new interface.”
The new lock screen is a slide-up one; iOS 7 also features a slide-up drawer that brings the user to volume controls and setting toggles. Another new feature is the translucent keyboard, which allows users to see content behind the keyboard. In fact every UI element that previously blocked background content is now translucent. The background now features animated wallpapers instead of a simple photo, making for a more advanced look. The UI responds to gyroscopic movement, so as you turn your phone, the angle and lighting of the entire UI adjusts. A new app switch allows users to preview apps on their screen and slide smoothly from one app to another.
Every application has been redesigned to look more modern and sleek. The new weather application is similar to Yahoo’s weather. Gamecenter is no longer just green felt. The new Calendar is based around pinching to zoom from screen to screen, pinching out to go from a day view to a week view, and from a week view to a month view, and pinching in to do the opposite. The new notification center has a “Today” view, which shows your calendars, stocks, the weather and a small preview of tomorrow.
The swipe-up drawer features one-click access to airplane mode, wi-fi and Bluetooth toggles, volume, music playback and, to the dismay of the thousands of flashlight application designers, a built-in flashlight. iOS 7 also responds to your app usage by giving more background cycles to the applications that you use more frequently. The new operating system also takes advantage of “Opportunistic Updates,” which provides your phone with updates when you have a particularly strong signal.
The new Safari features a fullscreen look. Rather than have a URL input and a search bar, both have been combined into one easy-to-use input bar at the top of the screen. A new tab interface allows users to sweep down from the top and scroll through a 3D display where they can drag and rearrange tabs. AirDrop is a new program that makes wirelessly sharing pictures from device to device very simple
The new camera now has built in filters and allows the user to swipe the screen to transition between modes (stills, photos, panoramics, etc). Photos are now automatically organized into “Moments,” which break down your photos into moments determined by when the picture was taken or location. You can pinch in or out to create a smaller or larger moment and see your photos from a day or a year on one screen. Photo streams can be shared and managed by multiple users, allowing for families and friends to create and easily share albums of photos with one another.
iOS 7 introduces a new Siri with a more human sounding voice. The new Siri allows you to play voicemails, toggle settings and access Wikipedia without launching the browser. The new operating system also features connectivity with your car. Honda, Mercedes, Chevy, Nissan and many others are in the process of integrating iOS 7 capabilities into their cars. iOS can now push a unique, completely new interface to your car’s touchscreen. This equips drivers with easy navigation tools as well as alerts and notifications without the danger of handling your phone while driving. iOS 7 also features iTunes Radio, which will definitely be competing with Pandora. Like Pandora, users can create their own stations, ‘like’ the songs they think are good and skip over the ones they don’t. iTunes Radio also displays featured stations and displays songs and artists that are trending on Twitter at the time. From iTunes Radio, users can buy songs they like from iTunes in one click.
One great feature that is exclusive to iOS 7 is phone, Facetime and message blocking, so that users can block people who bother or annoy them, making it impossible for them to contact you again.
Another new feature is Activation Lock. Activation Lock allows users to deactivate their iPhone if it is stolen, rendering the phone useless to thieves. This will hopefully deter theft.
iOS 7 is available for beta today and will be available for full release later this year. iOS 7 is supported by iPhone 4 and later, iPad 2 and later, iPad Mini and iPod Touch 5th generation or later.
In summary: whoa. Apple has truly gone above and beyond with what they’ve announced today. They have enhanced every one of their products, from the MacBook to the Mac Pro and the iPhone. These new and upgraded devices provide users with a new experience that only Apple can provide. Many of the products shared today are still in their testing stages, but are sure to be a huge hit once they hit the market.