WWDC 2023 Keynotes to Explore
Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) has become a widely anticipated event by developers, tech enthusiasts, and Apple fans worldwide. As the curtains rose on WWDC 2023, Apple once again captivated its audience with a whole host of exciting announcements. Let us explore the key highlights of WWDC 2023 and dive into the exciting advancements that Apple introduced.
Apple unveiled macOS 14, named Sonoma. One of its standout features is the new widgets, inspired by their success on iOS. These widgets are designed to adapt dynamically to your usage. They’re interactive too, allowing you to perform actions such as selecting images directly from the widget window.
macOS 14 also introduces game mode —a mode aimed at minimizing distractions during gameplay by reducing latency with controllers and improving in-game responsiveness.
The update also includes an overlay feature for teleconferencing apps like FaceTime, Zoom, and Teams that can place the speaker against a dynamic backdrop. Exciting effects, such as fireworks, have also been added to enhance the teleconferencing experience.
Safari also gains new features, such as the ability to lock private browsing and add web apps to the system’s dock, providing users with a more versatile and convenient browsing experience. The new Safari update will also block trackers from loading and remove URL trackers.
Vision Pro & visionOS
Apple announced the Vision Pro, an augmented reality headset with a price tag of $3,499. Set to release early next year, Vision Pro can be used to view apps, watch movies, play games, view objects in 3D, work within Microsoft Office apps, and lots more — all within a virtual world. Additionally, thanks to spacial audio, users will feel completely immersed in the virtual experience.
visionOS, the operating system for the Vision Pro, was also announced. From day one, visionOS will come with its own app store, which will feature apps from major developers, including Microsoft Office and Teams, Adobe Lightroom, and Zoom. There will also be over 100 Apple Arcade titles to play and other cool ways to experience the headset, such as software to view in-depth medical models and outer space.
Apple has unveiled iOS 17, which focuses on enhancing communication, sharing, and typing experiences. The release introduces several exciting features, including personalized Contact Posters in the Phone app, enabling users to customize their appearance during outgoing calls.
Live Voicemail provides real-time transcription and the ability to answer calls while voicemails are being left. FaceTime now supports audio and video messages, as well as interactive Reactions during calls. Notably, FaceTime has also been extended to Apple TV 4K, allowing users to make video calls on the big screen.
In the Messages app, users can enjoy an enhanced sticker experience, create Live Stickers from photos, and benefit from improved search functionality with filters. iOS 17 also brings advancements to AirDrop, offering new ways to share content and initiate SharePlay sessions.
iOS 17 introduces two new apps: Journal and StandBy. Journal is designed to help users practice gratitude and reflect through journaling, with personalized suggestions based on recent activities. StandBy provides glanceable information when the iPhone is charging and set down, allowing users to personalize the display with clock styles, photos, and widgets.
Other notable updates include mental health features in the Health app, offline maps in Maps, collaborative playlists in Apple Music, enhanced AirPods features, expanded activity history in the Home app, and improvements to Siri, Photos, Reminders, and accessibility features.
iPadOS 17 aims to enhance the functionality of the iPad with features such as interactive widgets, a redesigned lock screen, the addition of the Health app, and more.
Interactive widgets on the home screen allow users to access information and control various tasks without opening the respective apps. Users can interact with widgets on the lock screen, set dynamic Live Photo wallpapers, customize fonts, and view Live Activities for quick access to sports scores, travel plans, and more. Developers can create their own interactive widgets using WidgetKit, ensuring a fresh and personalized experience for users.
Apple is also improving the iPad’s productivity by enhancing PDF handling in the Notes app. Using machine learning models, the Notes app can now identify text within PDFs, enabling users to annotate and collaborate on documents seamlessly. Users can collaborate in real time via FaceTime and add signatures or sign documents using an Apple Pencil.
Safari receives updates as well, with new Profiles to separate work and personal browsing, improved Private Browsing with Face ID or Touch ID, faster search suggestions, and enhanced responsiveness.
Apple also mentioned minor updates to features like Stage Manager, Freeform, Spotlight, Visual Look Up, Keyboard, and Siri, alongside the major changes in iPadOS 17.
watchOS 10 brings back widgets, allowing users to scroll through a stack of widgets by turning the digital crown for quick access to information. The update also makes it easier to read information from various Apple Watch apps at a glance, making better use of the watch’s display.
In terms of health, watchOS 10 focuses on mental health, allowing users to log moods and take assessment quizzes to evaluate anxiety and depression risks.
Fitness features include improved cycling views, automatic connectivity to cycling accessories, and the display of metrics such as cycling power and RPM. Hikers will benefit from trail information, 3D maps, and topographic maps, bringing the Apple Watch closer to Garmin’s offerings.
Additionally, watchOS 10 introduces custom Fitness Plus plans, Stacks for back-to-back workouts, and the ability to adjust the audio mix. Vision and screen distance tracking have been added to the Health app, along with updates to the Medications app for timely reminders.
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