Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Some of the best links to WWDC 2014 aka OS X Yosemite and iOS 8 news and tips

Already there are many great reports of details not covered in the 2014 WWDC keynote.  Here are some note and links to articles about those details:

  • Mac Stories - More iOS and OS X partnership - Yosemite will let you record video of apps on your iPhone.  This will empower app previews that will be used in the app store.
  • MacRumors - Battery usage per app will be made visible
  • 9to5Mac 
    • self-timer in camera
    • siri integration with Shazam
    • rearrange share sheets - see the site to understand
    • better accessibility zoom features
    • the ability to request the non-mobile version of sites while in Safari
    • auto-delete messages in iMessage

Google News has ZERO news articles about Apple's WWDC 2014.  Interesting.

Monday, June 2, 2014

WWDC 2014 Keynote cheat sheet

First, if you missed it where do you see it?  http://www.apple.com/apple-events/june-2014/

As expected, WWDC is all about developers.  Apple announced OS X 10.10 Yosemite, and IOS 8.

As a user, what does this mean?  A ton.  This really is the biggest release in a long time.  I think it will be a revolutionary experience.  I already enjoy iMessage in Mavericks.  This release goes so far beyond that I think we will be delighted.
  • OS X Yosemite
    • It will be free, and this summer there will be a public beta program.
    • The interface has been greatly refined
    • Dark mode - instead of bright menus and dock, they can be dark
    • Further minimization to window real estate
    • Notification: Day at a glance like in iOS
    • Spotlight
      • Not stuck in the upper right corner anymore
      • Bringing in many more resources, including internet resources for immediate data availability
    • Mail
      • Mail Drop - up to 5GB attachments sent encrypted through iCloud
      • Markup - draw on images right from mail - with smart help
    • Safari
      • A single bar (by default) frees screen real estate. 
      • Sharing, RSS feed reading in the side bar, sharing to people to communicated with most recently
      • Tab view
      • FAST - faster than ever, and more power efficient!  HTML5 premium video means no netflix plugin and 2 extra hours of watching video
    • iCloud Drive
  • iOS 8 will not run on iPhone 4 - iPhone 4S is the minimum.
    • Smart notifications let you stay in context/in app while responding to notifications from: texts, email, calendar, reminders, and even messages from apps!
    • SMS
      • recent and favorite contacts are easy to select via the multitasking interface
    • Mail
      • easy marking as unread and flagging
      • more recognition of data in emails for other uses, such as to add to calendar
    • Safari
      • Tab view is for iPad also
    • Keyboard
      • context smart word suggestions, learning about your context and tone!
      • 3rd party keyboards are now possible!
    • Family Sharing
      • Now an official way to set up sharing as long as we use the same credit card.  
      • Approval of purchases being made on another iPhone!
      • different iCloud accounts, and yet find family members anyway.
    • Health app
      • integrate data into one dashboard
      • emergency card for the lock screen
      • control what data to share with each app
      • healthkit - enable sharing data with your doctor, or other apps
    • Spotlight
      • It searches more resources and understands context and location
      • can search stores
      • also works in Safari
  • There is huge integration between devices - continuity.  Why did Microsoft never do this?
    • Air Drop - OS X and iOS can share.
    • Handoff - pick up where you left off!  This is amazing.  Works either way - lets you pick up finishing an email, or a pages document, and more.
    • Instant Hotspot - super easy to configure, works over the network! 
    • SMS - sent SMS (non-imessage) texts from iMessage!
      • Add/remove people from conversations, name groups to communicate with, get out of conversations, silence conversations
      • Smart voice messaging, listen and respond with the phone to your face
      • share location information as part of the conversation
      • see all attachments in a conversation
      • send many photos and videos at the same time
    • Phone - your computer can, partnering with your iPhone, accept and make calls!
    • Photos
      • every photo protected and available in original format via the iCloud Photo Library (on devices or on the web).
      • new affordable storage options to put your whole library in the cloud without taking up all the room on your devices.
      • Organization bits (moments, collections, years, favorites, albums) available on all platforms
      • edits available on every device
      • search and smart suggestions
      • smart composition and photo editing tools
      • Time-lapse videos!
As a developer, what does this mean?

  • Metal - supposed to be 10x better than OpenGL
  • Tools:
    • lots of data sharing options
    • PhotoKit and Camera API - embed photo editing tools directly into the photos app, and take photos with precise control over the camera
    • add custom actions, for example a bing capability to translate a webpage!  Weird and wow.
    • Apps can target the notification center now
    • Developers can make keyboards
    • Access to TouchID
    • HomeKit - central control of supported devices (with Siri support)
    • CloudKit - develop cloud apps without other infrastructure ?!?  Wow.
    • SprteKit (2D), SceneKit (3D)
  • Xcode brings: A new programming language - Swift for iOS (I really feel I have heard of this before)
    • Very efficient (faster than C), modern
    • Same compiler, so can live with objective-C programs
    • Playgrounds - interesting real-time exploration of variables, their values, and their effect on the app
Whew.  So much!  What do you think?  I think with these new features now, and with new hardware this fall, Apple will have a blockbuster year.  I do not think any other company can match this feature set.  It will likely drive a virtuous feedback loop inciting more mac purchases from iPhone users and more iPhone purchases from mac users.

Speculation before the June 2014 WWDC

I am reading much speculation about many things Apple.  This comes in about 3 flavors at the moment:

  • What is Apple going to do with the Beats acquisitions?
  • What new products will be announced when, and which will be announced at WWDC?
    • new iMacs
    • iPhone 6
    • iOS 8, fitness and health monitoring
    • iWatch
    • mobile payments
    • Where and how will sapphire be used?  How about liquid metal?  Will they be used together?
  • What is the recently started Apple home integration product set going to offer us?

With the Beats acquisitions (the hardware and the service) I do not understand the value.  I do not think Apple will lose on the deal,  but I do not see leverage for something huge.  I hope and trust that Tim Cook knows what he is doing.

New products... Apple executives have been making promises.  Tim Cook talks of multiple new product categories.  Eddie Cue says Apple has the best product pipeline in 25 years.  What is not enough a cause of speculation in my opinion is the new head of apple retail, Angela Ahrendts.

Apple has new materials that are likely ready or almost ready for use in products that no other company can copy.  This is what Apple does.

Now for prognostication:
WWDC is for developers, not new hardware announcements.  iOS8 and OS X 10.10 will be announced.  APIs for home integration and a framework (and APIs) for health and fitness monitoring will be announced.  I think the rest of new product categories will wait until later.