Apple CEO Tim Cook stressed Apple’s commitment to equality and diversity and the fight against COVID-19 before launching into a slew of news for developers across all Apple’s platforms. Here’s a partial run-down (regularly updated).
iOS 14 announcements
App Library: Automatically organizes all your apps into logical collections,and can also search for specific apps. Recently added and editable, so you can lose collections you have no use for.
Widgets: Now “more beautiful and data rich”. More data rich and you can configure them to your needs. You can also place critical widgets on your Home screen. There is also a Widget Gallery, which offers up all your available options in a highly visual environment. Smart Stack is also a feature, you can place this at the top of the screen and it will use AI to present you with the data you most need at that time of day.
Picture in Picture Video: Now you can keep watching video while working in other apps. Even better, they used the wondrous Mythic Quest to illustrate this.
Siri: Now has a new compact design, and presents results in a smarter way: Apps open fast, information is delivered in notifications view, and more. Siri handles 25 billion requests each month and now has 25x more facts than just a couple of years ago.
Translate: Siri can now help with translation. A new app called Translate can work offline and uses on device ML to translate between 11 languages. #wwdc2020. (Also has conversation mode).
Messages: Messages now has pinned conversations. Also has inline replies so you can focus messages within conversations. Also has support for mentions so only the person you want to speak to gets notified. You can also create group photos and more. A load more options for your Animoji.
Maps: Best way to explore the world all with privacy. Maps now offers more accurate information, 3D views and more. New Maps to UK, Ireland and Canada later this year.
Guides: Maps will host built in guides from credible sources. The company has also built new Cycling directions to Maps, will let you know if you have stairs or steep elevations. This is coming to big U.S. and Chinese cities first. Apple is also putting EV routing into the system so you can automatically be directed to charging stops on your route.
CarPlay: Available across 97% of the U.S. and 80% of new cars sold worldwide. This year Apple is adding new wallpaper options. You’ll be able to use your iPhone to open and start your car, starting with the new BMW model. Digital keys live in your iPhone’s Secure Element, so you can share them in a Message. You can also set restricted driving mode (“perfect for teen drivers”). This will be available in both iOS 13 and iOS 14.
Apple has been working on standards with industry group, and is working to use the U1 chip inside iPhones, and the company expects to see support for this standard in new cars starting next year.
App Clips: “What if you could have the right app you needed at just the right moment.” App Clip is a new tool that lets you use some of the functionality of an app even if you don’t have the relevant app installed. You might use it in a coffee shop, to rent a scooter, for example.
Federeghi explains that “Everything about App Clips is designed for speed.” The feature uses Sign in with Apple and Apple Pay to pay for items and log into apps. Launch from Safari, Messages, Maps, NFC tags, QR codes. Apple has also designed an App Kit code which lets you invoke an App Clip. Developers create App Clips using Xcode and they must be under 10MB in size.
So, what’s new in iPad OS?
A new Sidebar lets you move more easily between parts of the app in Photos. It makes it much easier to organize images into albums, for example. Just tap to change views. This will be seen in other apps, such as Calendar and Files. Music has also been updated to exploit iPad’s larger screen.
Search redesigned with new compact deisgn and lets you search from within apps. Apple has also rebuilt search to be Universal: As an app launcher, for contacts, document finding,
Scribble is coming to iPad, so you will be able to use an Apple Pencil to handwrite in any application and it will be automatically converted into text – that includes searching in Safari or using the new Universal Search feature.
You can also grab a selection of handwritten words, convert them into text, and then place them into another app. There’s lots more, but Apple didn’t talk about everything.
Mary – Ann Ionescu: AirPods will now seamlessly switch between devices and will automatically switch if you are yourself migrating between your devices.
A new feature called Spatial Audio gives you the sensation of sitting in a room of sound on AirPods Pro. These use advanced audio algorithms that create an immersive sound experience. The company has packed a series of technologies to create a surround sound experience that keeps you in the center of the action, the company claims.
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