Editor’s note: This is a special edition of the TechSummit Rewind, focusing on Apple’s WWDC keynote.
Apple has released a preview of iOS 10, featuring heavy updates to Messages, Siri, Maps, Photos, Apple Music, and News, along with the addition of the Home app for managing HomeKit devices.
“iOS 10 is our biggest release yet.”
-Craig Federighi, Apple senior vice president of software engineering
Messages has received several animated and personalized ways to message friends and family.
The app has received animations like balloons, confetti, and fireworks that can take over the screen to celebrate a special occasion, invisible ink to send messages revealed after a friend swipes over it, and handwritten notes. Automatic suggestions allow for words to be replaced with emoji with a tap, while Tapback allows you to respond with a tap, and rich links let you see content inline and play media without leaving a conversation.
Developers are also being allowed into Messages, with integrations including the ability to peel and paste stickers into conversations, personalize GIFS, edit photos, send payments, or schedule dinner and a movie from within the app.
Developers can also build on Siri to let users interact with apps using their voice.
Developers can now integrate Maps into their apps, with services like OpenTable, Uber, and Lyft integrating bookings within the Maps app. The app also adds new intelligence that proactively delivers directions to where you might want to go next, based on your routine and calendar appointments. Once a route is planned, Maps can also search for points of interest along the route and provide an estimate of how a stop might impact the overall length of your trip.
Photos can resurface forgotten memories from your library in Memories, which scans all your photos/videos, finds favorites, and presents them in a collection. Each Memory also contains a Memory Movie, an edited movie with theme music, titles, and cinematic transitions.
Memories groups the people, places, and things inside images into albums with on-device facial, object, and scene recognition.
Home is a game that allows you to set up, manage, and control your home in one place. Accessories can be individually managed or grouped into scenes so they work together with a single command and can be controlled with Siri. They can be remotely managed or set up for home automation with Apple TV, and can respond to automatic triggers set by time of day, location, or action.
Apple Music has been redesigned with a new design language and structure for navigating and discovering music. The Library, For You, Browse, and Radio tabs have been redesigned to provide an “even greater sense of place,” according to Apple. There’s also a Search tab that makes finding music easier.
The news app features a new For You tab, organized into distinct sections for finding stories, as well as support for breaking news notifications and paid subscriptions.
iOS 10 brings several tools to make accessing information easier. Raise to Wake automatically wakes the screen as you raise your iPhone, allowing you to view all your notifications at a glance, from the Lock screen.
Apple is starting the use of Differential Privacy in iOS 10 to help discover the usage patterns of a large number of users “without compromising individual privacy,” according to the company. In addition, this technology will improve QuickType/emoji suggestions, Spotlight deep link suggestions, and Lookup Hints in Notes.
Siri intelligence brings new QuickType features, including contextual predictions to surface relevant information based on location, calendar availability/contacts. Predictive typing also supports multiple languages without having to switch keyboards.
Phone adds integration for third-part VoIP calls, voicemail transcription, and a caller ID extension for spam alerts.
Bedtime Alarm in the Clock app lets you set a regular sleep schedule and receive bedtime reminders.
The iOS 10 developer preview is available for iOS Developer Program members, with a public beta launching next month before launching this fall for free on the following devices.
- iPhone 5 and later
- All iPad Air/iPad Pro models
- iPad 4th generation
- iPad mini 2 and later
- iPod touch 6th generation
In a feature that everyone saw coming, Siri is now on the Mac in macOS Sierra. Users can use the assistant to look up information, find documents, pin/drag and drop search results, send messages, and adjust system preferences. It’s accessible from the Dock, menu bar, or keyboard. You can also set reminders and search your Photos library.
iCloud integration allows for everything in the Desktop and Documents folder available on your iPhone/iPad so you can always have access to the files you need. Universal Clipboard lets you copy content (images, text, video) from one device and paste it on another.
Apple Pay also comes to the Mac for shopping online on participating websites. On these sites, look for the Apple Pay button at checkout and complete your purchase with Touch ID on your iPhone or on your Apple Watch.
Photos also let you rediscover memories, organize your library, and perfect shots. Basically, it gets all the Memories features mentioned in the iOS 10 section.
macOS Sierra brings tabs to apps that support multiple windows, like Maps, Mail, Pages, Numbers, Keynote, TextEdit, and third-party apps. With Tabs, you can browse multiple Maps locations without losing your place, copy and paste between Pages documents, or jump between multiple email drafts in Mail.
Video from Safari or iTunes can also be placed picture-in-picture in a window over a desktop as you work, and resize, drag, and pin that video anywhere on screen. The video also stays put when switches spaces.
Auto Unlock lets you walk up to your Mac while wearing an authenticated Apple Watch and be logged into your Mac.
Optimized Storage frees up space when your Mac starts getting full by storing infrequently used items in iCloud and reminding you to delete used app installers, and clearing out duplicate downloads, caches, and logs.
The developer preview of macOS Sierra is available now through the Apple Developer Program. A public beta will launch in July, before the final version goes live this fall.
Apple previewed watchOS 3, which features improved performance through the ability to launch favorite apps, enhanced navigation like the new Dock, and new fitness and health capabilities.
The update introduces Breathe, an app designed to encourage users to partake in deep breathing exercises. The Activity app now includes the ability to share, compare, and compete as well as enabling wheelchair users to close their Activity rings. Breathe’s visualization and haptic cues guide users through deep breaths in one-five minute sessions with a heart rate summary at completion.
By pressing the side button, users can access the new Dock with their recent and favorite apps. Users can launch their favorite apps right from the dock or watch face and have continuously updated information for those apps. Users can also swipe up from the watch face for a new Control Center, swipe down for Notification Center, and swipe left/right to switch out watch faces.
watchOS 3 adds the ability to share, compare and compete with others by sharing your Activity. Users receive notifications on their friends’ progress, including completed Activity rings, finished workouts, and earned achievements.
Activity sharing is now directly connected to the Messages app, so users can communicate, motivate, and celebrate with friends and family with smart replies specifically customized for the app.
Wheelchair pushes also contribute to all-day calorie goals, the “time to stand” reminder is now “time to roll” and there are dedicated wheelchair-specific workouts.
Smart replies are faster with their availability available right in the message notification. When a more custom reply is needed, the scribble feature allows users to write on the display with Apple Watch converting the handwriting to text.
SOS enables people in emergencies to initiate a call with emergency services through their iPhone or via WiFi, and notify their emergency contact by pressing and holding the side button.
New watch faces include Minnie Mouse, Activity, and Numerals. Apps can Workout, Music, and Messages can also launch directly from the watch face, with complications coming to the Photo, Motion, and Timelapse faces. Watch faces can be customized along with discovering third-party apps with the Faces Gallery on the Watch iPhone app.
watchOS 3 will be available this fall for free.
Apple TV users will soon be able to take advantage of new Siri capabilities and single sign-on.
Siri can now search across more apps, including YouTube, along with topic search for movies, and the ability to tune into more live channels. Users can also control HomeKit-enabled accessories in conjunction with the Home iOS app.
Single sign-on allows customers to authenticate all the video channels from pay-TV providers by signing in once to enjoy all authenticated network-TV apps. During the sign-in process, customers can view a page of all the authenticated apps a pay-TV provider offers to discover and download their channels. The feature is also making its way to iOS.
iOS users can download the new Apple TV Remote app for touch navigation, along with Siri and gameplay support.
Users can set up a dark Apple TV background.
When a keyboard appears on Apple TV, one will also appear on nearby iOS devices logged into the same iCloud account for entering text.
The tvOS preview is available now for Developer Program members, before launching this fall for free.
Swift Playgrounds in a new iPad app that aims to teach Apple’s Swift programming language with lessons where students write code to guide onscreen characters through a world, solving puzzles and mastering challenges as they learn core concepts. The app also features built-in templates to encourage users to express creativity and create programs that can be shared with friends using Mail or Messages or posted publicly online.
Apple will regularly release new challenges so students continue to refine their coding abilities as their skills and interests grow.
Students and developers can modify and build on the code provided in templates by adding graphics and touch interactions, allowing you to add a virtually unlimited variety of programs using Swift and iOS frameworks. Empty playground documents can be created or they can start from one of the built-in templates with scaffolding for graphics and user interface to build powerful apps that respond to touch and accelerometer or that control Bluetooth devices. Projects can be exported into Xcode to create fully-functional iOS and macOS apps.
Entire programs can be created with the iPad’s MultiTouch interface and coding keyboard for typing in characters common to Swift by swiping across a key. A shortcut bar presents predicted next commands/values depending on the context, and a pop-over keypad lets you tap to edit a number in place, touch a color value to display a color picker, and drag the boundaries of a loop/function definition to wrap around existing code. You can also drag from a library of common coding snippets to create new code with little to no typing.
A preview version of Swift Playgrounds is available now to Apple Developer Program members as part of the iOS 10 developer preview and will be available with the iOS 10 public beta in July. The final version of Swift Playgrounds will be available for free in the App Store this fall on the following devices.
- All iPad Air/Pro models
- iPad mini 2 and later