In a couple of months, Apple will release the iPhone 7, although unlike previous years they are expected to announce three iPhones: the iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus and the iPhone 7 Pro. The latter of which will benefit from an advanced dual-lens camera and cross-over with Apple’s growing line of hybrid accessories — keyboard and Apple Pencil — previously reserved for use with its iPad Pro line.
Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) expo started yesterday. The company has already announced a raft of new updates for iPhone, Apple Watch and Mac. Listed below are some new and most important aspects of all the new software. Expect that in the next couple of days, more updates will come out.
Apple has now taken the wraps of iOS 10. The new platform features a host of new features that are designed to make using and abusing your iPhone and iPad all the more easier.
Two fundamental components of iOS have been redesigned: the lock screen and the home screen. The idea here, FINALLY, is to give users better and faster access to information with minimal fuss through the use of widgets, which are essentially live tiles, and are access using 3D Touch.
A major announcement at WWDC 2016 was the news that the OS X brand for Apple’s Mac software was being replaced with "macOS," it is, of course, still the same software family, but with a new name presumably picked to make it clearer to consumers what exactly it’s all about. The rest of the naming convention follows on from Apple’s switch from 'big cat' codenames (Mountain Lion, Snow Leopard) to major natural landmarks - last year was Yosemite, this year it's Sierra; macOS Sierra.
As with the previous build, the big changes aboard this update actually revolve around bringing iOS and macOS closer together in terms of overlap via the Continuity feature. A prime example being the Auto-Unlock for mac OS Sierra will now work with a paired Apple Watch brought into the vicinity. Additionally, there’s now a Universal Clipboard so that items copied either on iOS devices or on macOS computers will preserve the same copied text/images/data between them; in other words you can copy something on your iPhone and paste it into a document on the Mac and vice versa. Handy.
Apple has improved iCloud with support for moving folders and files between multiple Mac computers, and between Macs and iOS devices, while Optimized Storage is a feature designed to allow your device to go through your storage and file away anything old, dusty and long untouched into iCloud so that local space is free. The automated features can also extend to emptying the trash bin and clearing web browser history. Apple's Craig Federighi boasted that in one instance these features had cleared as much as 130GB of space from a local storage drive.
Apple Pay is also being integrated into the desktop environment but will require an iOS device with Touch ID or Apple Watch for verification.
Lastly, as per the rumors, Apple confirmed that Siri is finally being implemented in macOS too. No surprises that many of Siri’s capabilities on desktop closely mirror what iOS users are already familiar with; search, creating tasks and organzsing personal calendars, amongst other things, but naturally this will work with Continuity too so you’ll be able to do things like call a contact with a voice command from the desktop.
The exciting news for Siri is that the personal assistant is, again as per rumor, being opened up to third-party app developers, something which many hope will vastly expand the repertoire of knowledge, features, and capabilities in its virtual hands. At a basic level this will also allow third party apps to implement Siri voice commands - Apple demonstrated using Siri to send remote payments, begin tracking in fitness apps, or summon a cab via applications like Uber. There are a few theories floating around along the lines that Siri hasn’t taken off as well as it could have because Apple has kept it locked down, meaning opening it up must be a bid to improve the service and make it more popular with users.