WWDC 2018: What You Need To Know About iOS, macOS, tvOS and watchOS Updates

Apple stuck to the script at the annual World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC). No new hardwares were unveiled. Instead, the company focused on updates to its operating systems: iOS, macOS, tvOS, and watchOS.

 

Apple kicked off its annual World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC) in San Jose, California on Monday with tons of software updates. As expected, there were no new hardwares unveiled, the company opting to reserve that for its September event.

But it doesn’t mean there aren’t any exciting products to look out for!  Apple says most of these features will come in the fall. Here’s a quick summary of the stuff to be excited about when they become available later this year.

iOS 12: Siri Shortcuts, Memoji, Group FaceTime, ARKit 2 and ScreenTime

It is much easier to work with Siri in iOS 12. With Siri Shortcuts, the smart assistant can suggest actions based on factors like time, location, and even your calendar. This means you can ask Siri to do a set of commands such turning on the home AC, texting your mom your ETA and turning on your car radio, all with just the phrase “heading home”.

Memoji is very similar to AR Emoji that debuted with the Samsung Galaxy S9. It brings customisable emojis to the iPhone X. New effects are also coming to Messages and FaceTime apps. Users can now add filters, stickers, text, and Animoji to photos and videos before they send them.

Facetime has been upgraded as well. Now you can add up to 32 different people with the option of audio or video.

Apple is determined to expand its services into the AR realm. The company unveiled today its ARKit 2 framework which brings support for multiple users in the same AR environment. 

Another AR-related tool is the Measure, which will allow you to measure 3D objects in real time using the camera. You do this by simply tapping and touching screen.

With all these cool new features, Apple also doesn’t want you to just spend all your time on your phone. Screen Time offers weekly summary reports to help you see which apps you use more. App Limits allow users to well, set time limits for certain apps with constant reminders. You can of course, ignore the warning but iOS 12 will continue to remind you of it.

macOS

The new macOS, called Mojave, will now let users enter into something called Dark Mode. This feature allows you to dim your desktop screen making it easier for the eyes. Dark Mode is specifically intended to make editing photos and videos even better.

Mojave is also introducing Desktop Stacks. It allows users better acess to their desktops by automatically stacking files into groups based on file type.

The Mac App Store has also gone through a facelift. It now sports an upgraded look and better text content. The addition of Create, Work, Play, and Develop tabs let users easily find what apps they want to install on their devices.

tvOS

Apple gave a preview of its tvOS 12 for the Apple TV lineup. A Zero Sign-on feature gives users access to their account by automatically signing them on. The feature will detect the broadband network a user is on and gives them access to the premium apps bundled to their plan.

The Apple TV app for all Apple devices now supports over 100 video apps from 10 countries.

Additionally, the company also announced a partnership with Charter communications to provide Apple TV 4K to customers. The latter is the second largest cable provider in the US.

watchOS

The Cupertino-based company has also unveiled the watchOS 5 for its wearable tech.

Users now have the ability to do watch to watch communication through a feature called Walkie-Talkie. It is quite a convenient feature when you want to exchange voice messages back and forth in real time without hopping onto a call.

Apple has however, dropped supported for the original Apple Watch. The update is only available for Apple Watch Series 1 and later. It also requires an iPhone 5s or later device running iOS 12.

New Dark Mode And Apple News App For MacOS 10.14

New News App And Dark Mode For Apple’s MacOS 10.14

According to early reports, MacOS 10.14 gets new dark mode and Apple news apps.  Developer Steve Troughton-Smith tweeted a screenshot of which he said was to be that of macOs 10.14.  It focused on Xcode 10 and showed a couple of bigger changes to the operation system.

 

 

The New Dark Mode

The new version of the macOs will seem to have a more comprehensive dark mode.  It just does not darken the menu bar and the dock.  It darkens broadly, affecting apps and even the trash can.  This seems that the feature could affect the whole system.

The whole UI is dark  So is the white text and iconography.  It looks like it is possibly hitting a more universal dark mode on the Mac.

Other New Features

Another noticeable thing on the screenshot is what appears to be a new default system wallpaper.  It shows sand dunes under a starry night sky.  There is a suggestion that one of the possible names for the macOS 10.14 is Mojave.

A new icon is visible below the newly designed Xcode.  This icon is not on the Mac: News.  This shows that the news app is making its way to the Mac.  This is good news as to Mac users.  They find it disadvantageous when an Apple News is unavailable on a Mac.  News stories get shared on Twitter and through messages and could only be opened on iOS.

How The Details Came Out Early

As all other premature reports, the details came out because of a leak.  The leak came from Apple itself through a short preview video.   Video previews are currently available on Apple’s mobile platform.

There has never been rumors about what is to come with the macOS 10.14.  But there has been speculation that there could be some integration between Mac ans iOS apps.  Apple kicks off its keynote talk June 4th and we will be able to find out more about it.

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Silicon Valley Tech Giant Apple Acquires Buddybuild Team

In an attempt to hasten its efforts to bring in more developers, Apple Inc. has reportedly acquired Buddybuild, a Vancouver-based app tools start-up company to create more apps for Apple’s platform.

 

Buddybuild has positioned itself to be a “mobile iteration platform” and pushing various apps through GitHub, GitLab and BitBucket.

Here’s what you need to know about Buddybuild

 

The Canadian-based start-up company had confirmed that it was acquired by the Cupertino-based company when it released a statement earlier this week.

 

“We’re excited to share that the buddybuild team has joined the Xcode engineering group at Apple to build amazing developer tools for the entire iOS community,” the company said in a blog post.

 

“We’ve always been proud to be a Canadian company, so we’re also pleased that we will be staying right here in Vancouver – a hotbed of developer and engineering talent,” it added.

 

Meanwhile, the company said that its service would remain available to its existing customers “to build, test, and ship iOS apps to testers through buddybuild.com.”

 

It, however, emphasized that it would no longer accept new customers. Buddy build also said that its existing Free Starter plans and Android app development will cease effective March 1, this year.

 

But Apple did not fully disclose the financial terms of the deal. What we know so far is that Buddybuild employed around 40 staff engineers. Part of the Apple’s acquisition is that the Canadian-based start-up company will be rolled into Xcode.

 

Xcode is Apple’s popular suite of development tools for its various platforms such as in iOS, macOS, watchOS and tvOS.

App Store Update: Apple Now Lets You Preorder Apps?

Cupertino-based Apple Inc. has recently launched a new feature for its App Store. The innovative feature allows Apple users to the pre-order app. Once Apple users have pre-ordered apps, these apps will be downloaded automatically on their devices.

How does Apple’s pre-order feature works?

 

The apps will download on users’ device once they were officially uploaded to Apple’s App Store. Apple’s pre-order app feature works by giving the developers 90 days to upload their apps in advance before its release date, a report from The Verge said.

The innovative feature allows Apple users to select and pre-order an app in advance. The selected apps will then be downloaded once available in the App Store. The pre-order app feature is also available in other Apple App Store iterations—iOs, macOS, and tvOS, respectively.

In addition to the advance uploading of app, Apple also gives developers the chance to offer their apps either for free or paid pre-orders. Regarding app price, Apple pointed out that if there’s a change in app prices during the period it was pre-ordered, a lower price will be charged to the Apple customers.

This means that Apple customers will pay only the pre-ordered price or the price at launch. The Cupertino-based company also said that Apple customers would not be charged until such time they can download the app.

 

Who did it first? Apple or Google?

 

Surely, Apple’s pre-order app scheme is a smart move to entice more subscribers to buy apps in App Store. But Apple is not the first tech company to offer such feature to its million of subscribers across the globe.

Tech giant and Alphabet-owned Google has a similar feature offered to its customers. Google has employed such scheme a couple of years now, ahead of its rival Apple.

However, Google’s pre-order app feature works only by notifying the customers if the app is already available for download.