With every new WWDC, I would stand in awe at the new innovations that would repeatedly come up during the conference. I remember watching the keynote that introduced the iPhone to the world on January 9, 2007.
I remember calling friends who living in the US just to get my hands on that revolutionary device (which I managed to snag a used one in November 2007, sadly, which cost me three months of savings 😭). It was amazing. An iPod! Map! Touch Screen! And the classy Apple logo behind it! (You can be the ladies were equally impressed 😉)
Fast forward to 2020, after an era of a great man, the question is now raised:
What else will Apple surprise me with? A new Macbook? What is so good about iOS14 or watchOS7? Or even macOS 10.16 which is probably named after another mountain?
And boy, surprise me they did.
Tim Cook kicked off the WWDC with a commentary on racism and diversity, pledging Apple’s $100 million to Racial Injustice Initiative - enabling and empowering people of color! It's a great step towards inclusivity. Well Done Apple!
Here’s 3 other big updates from WWDC 2020:
With each iteration of the iOS architecture comes a myriad of improvements, and iOS14 did not disappoint. There's a new App Library, that allows singular views on apps by sorting and hiding other pages, This allows for better organization of apps and hiding apps that we only use once in a blue moon.
You can also add widgets now. Something commonly seen in Android devices, now debuts on iOS. Add your calendar, the weather, photos and many more on there (hmm, is the Circles.Life App Daily Poll making a debut there too?) And if your list of widgets gets complicated, a Smart Stack will allow you to compile multiple widgets, kinda like folders, in one location (Calming the OCD in me 😌). You can also tinker around with customization in the Widget Gallery.
PiP makes it out too, allowing video playback on the home screen, with the ability to resize and hide, which makes multitasking a breeze. Siri now appears less irritating, and yet smarter! No more full screen when Siri is summoned, instead a small nub is used instead! You can now task Siri to work more for you, with dictation, send an audio message and even do translations!
iMessage has improved as well, adding some Whatsapp or Work chat features like pinned conversations and inline replies. Maps improvements are also in the works, with cycling directions, routes and elevations (although they won't make it to SG just yet). EV mode on maps will provide directions to nearest recharging station.
Carplay has some upgrades, especially if you are planning to drive the new BMW 5 series. It grants users the ability to unlock their car via their phone and share this virtual key with your friends/spouse. Features such as new background and apps will be available for other carplay vehicles too.
Finally, the App store will allow App Clips. This allows you to access a portion of the app, without downloading the whole thing. In my opinion, it's a great feature as it allows me to use the app once, and forget about it, rather than park it in the corner wasting phone space.
iPadOS14 mirrors the same features as iOS14, with toolbars and panels for better multitasking, fully utilizing the real estate of the screen. It also features smaller tweaks like a notification tab on the top for incoming calls.
Scribbles lets you realise that your handwriting is still readable! With the Apple pen, you can write in text fields, and it will be converted to typed text. You can also select written words, copy them and paste them into other apps, where it will be converted to type text.
If you have owned, or won, an Airpod Pro, here’s an update for you! It allows you to simulate directional sound. So if you hear some conversation on the right, and you turn your head right, the accelerometers and sensors in the pro will orientate the sound to right in front of you! Trippy! (That means, 5.1, 7.1 or Dolby Atmos audio is going to be amazing!)
For the rest of the Airpods, well, you can now seamlessly switch the usage from the iPhone to your iPad/Macbook Pro with Ease!
Apple Watch now features a more robust health section! It now tracks dancing as workouts (from Hip Hop to Latin Dances 💃) using an advanced algorithm, along with targeted workouts that focus on core and strength training. (I wonder if they track buffet as exercise 🤤).
Another part of health is handwashing. Your Apple Watch now detects that you are washing your hands and checks if you are washing your hands for 20 seconds. The reward? Cleaner hands and some funky tone at the end of it.
You can now also track your rest, setting reminders for you to wind down by tracking existing patterns through your health app. You can also wake up to auditory notifications or haptic vibrations so you're instantly caught up on everything you missed while you were snoozing.
Lastly, watch-faces! You can download any ones that you like, and prompts will appear if you miss out any of the complications that are included in the various watch faces.
Well that's pretty much everything you missed at the Apple WWDC 2020 last night. I can do more about MacOS Big Sur, but that’s another story...
This article was contributed by Brian Seah, a long-time Circles.Life user and sometimes fan of Apple.
Experience these upcoming updates for yourself by getting any of Apple's latest phone from the iPhone SE (2020) to the iPhone 11 with Circles.Life. Get them at $0 upfront with our simple and transparent combo plans when you click here.
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