WWDC 2013’s Keynote featured new OS, software and hardware.
WWDC launched its 2013 conference with its traditional Keynote address featuring not only Apple’s Executive Management, but also some software and hardware updates. I will show a few of the main releases that were announced today and their features.
Apple’s mobile operating system iOS is getting its first major revamp since the original release of the iPhone. Sure there have been some technological updates to the system, but this time the look has been completely redone, too. iOS 7 will be available for download this fall and will work with iPhone 4 and newer, iPad 2 and newer, iPad Mini and the newest iPod Touch.
Some of the features of iOS 7 include:
- Control Center – have access to Control Center simply by swiping ‘up’ from any screen – including the Lock Screen. Control Center even includes an Apple Flashlight.
- AirDrop for iOS – share photos, videos, contacts…anything from any app with a Share button.
- Smarter multi-tasking – iOS 7 has added additional functionality to Multitasking. It now learns when you use your apps and will update before you launch them.
- Siri – Faster, better, smarter…Siri checks more sources, including Wikipedia and Twitter and takes on more tasks like returning calls, playing voicemail and controlling iTunes Radio.
With the next version of Mac OS, Apple wanted to make the Mac work smarter, not harder. The designers worked to include some power saving options to help the Mac run more efficiently. Features like, Timer Coalescing, App Nap and Safari Power Saver, OS X Mavericks will not only conserve battery power, but it will also help conserve CPU Memory. iTunes HD playback has even been modified so that it will use up to 35 percent less energy while users are watching videos. Another way OS X Mavericks conserves energy is by utilizing a feature called Compressed Memory. When you are running multiple apps at the same time, the Mac’s memory gets bogged down and slows the computer down as well. With Compressed Memory, when your usage approaches maximum memory capacity, OS X Mavericks automatically compresses data making more memory available.
In addition to its technology upgrades, OS X Mavericks also added some apps to the Mac family and some current apps received a facelift. iBooks, Maps, iCloud Keychain, Multiple Displays, Notifications, Finder Tabs, Tags and Calendar are all included with OS X Mavericks.
OS X Mavericks will be released this fall.
One of the announcements I’m most excited about is the new MacPro. During my time as a video editor, a MacPro was my main computer for work. It’s been a long time since the MacPro has received an upgrade and Apple gave this piece of equipment a MAJOR overhaul. The list of upgrades to this awesome Pro level computer is massive, so I will just include a few of the new features.
- Support for 4K video
- Thunderbolt 2
- Dual GPUs
- PCI Express-based flash storage
Visit Apple.com/mac-pro for a full preview of the new Pro computer.
The New MacBook Air
There are four main features for the New MacBook Air – 12 hours of battery life, newest Intel processors with Intel HD Graphics 5000, 802.11ac Wi-Fi Support and faster all-flash storage. While each of these is impressive in its own rite, I believe the 12-hour battery life will make this upgrade shine for the MacBook Air line.
While technically apart of iOS 7, iRadio deserves its own callout. As predicted, iRadio will bring streaming radio to iOS devices as a native app. It allows users to listen to a wide variety of music and if they so choose, users may purchase songs directly from the app. The app is free with ad support or without ad support if you subscribe to iTunes Match. Another important mention is that Siri will work with iRadio to take requests. Commands like, “Play more like this,” or, “Who sings this?” can be used to enhance your listening experience and help iRadio learn your listening habits.
While some people anticipated the possible release of the iWatch, iMac refresh or the myriad of other predicted items, I feel this WWDC Keynote did not disappoint. The announcement of iOS 7 alone will change the way we use our iOS devices. There were some rumors circulating about the potential for a new iPad or iPhone release, but with iOS 7 being available for download in the fall, that seems to align perfectly with a fall release of an iPhone/iPad series.