Every year, Apple hosts the World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC). In past years, WWDC was where things like the Apple Watch and the Apple TV were announced. While there were no new hardware announcements (such as a new iPhone), Apple did have several exciting revelations for developers. They have taken a holistic approach in their ecosystem with every device now having the ability to speak to each other almost seamlessly. This means that apps are no longer just apps. Maps for example will have an extension to make a dinner reservation, you’ll receive a notification to remind you of the reservation where a 3D touch interaction can give you more details, and then a widget on the Apple Watch will allow you to change your reservation if necessary. It’s more important than ever to think around every touch-point possible for apps, not just the app itself.
Now, lets get to the Keynote recap. Be on the lookout for more as we get the latest information from our developers attending the conference.
Watch OS 3
The Apple Watch is fully open to developers and as Ryan Gant, iOS Engineer at Bottle Rocket, said after the keynote “it is now a viable platform”. Apple announced instant updates, reduced load time and more. The Apple Watch will perform background updates and keep user’s most used apps in memory; this means watch apps will now load instantly instead of having to wait while they load.
Apple also announced a customizable dock so that you can customize which apps are easily accessible, new watch faces for any occasion, updates to their fitness app and much more.
The new Apple TV now has a dedicated app so that you can use your iPhone as the remote. It’ll use the accelerometer and gyroscope already built into the phone as an alternative to the Siri Remote. Speaking of Siri, Siri is now open to developers and includes over 650,000 movies and TV shows along with YouTube in search results in this latest update to Apple TV.
One of the most exciting announcements for the Apple TV: Single Sign-On. Instead of logging into each app network app specifically, users can now authenticate once using their cable provider account login and it will apply to all apps associated.
Apple’s flagship OS now fits the naming convention of their other operating systems as it goes from OS X, to macOS. In macOS Sierra, users will be able to use Apple Pay on the web and authenticate with their phone. Picture-in-Picture display has been added to macOS in similar style to the iPad and every window and application can now have tabs.
macOS now communications with other devices faster and better than ever. Focused on continuity, Apple announced auto-unlock for your computer with your Apple Watch, a universal clipboard so you can copy text on your iPhone and paste it on your MacBook, and even Siri will be joining in as a desktop assistant. This way, you can use Siri just as you would on your iPhone, while you’re on your Mac. If you ask her to set a reminder, the reminder will show up on your phone and watch as well.
Apple announced a number of updates to their apps for iOS 10. The part we found interesting is that they have opened up developer extensions on several applications. For instance, in Maps, users will be able to make a reservation at a restaurant and request an Uber pickup, all without ever leaving Maps. Messages, among others, also received an overhaul in this update and will receive the same addition of developer extensions.
Check in for more from Apple and the announcements made at WWDC and don’t forget to be on the lookout for our takeaways from the conference once it concludes.