he Worldwide Developers Conference 2019 keynote
event has come and gone, leaving us with an array of
changes to assimilate into our mental map of Apple
products and services. From the death of iTunes to
new software for the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and
Mac, let’s go over what Apple released and what it
means for you.
iOS 13 Reveals Dark Mode & Heightened Security
I was wondering if Apple would number its newest operating system 13 or jump straight ahead to 14 and skip the
unlucky digit. 13 it is, though, all year long. In addition to 30
percent faster Face ID and quicker app launch, downloads,
and updates, we’ll finally get Dark Mode, which, as predicted,
offers a gray color scheme in apps that’s easy on the eyes in
Privacy features were a big hit, garnering lots of applause
from the audience. Apple is rolling out protections including
the option to grant location access just once when requested
by an app, rather than indefinitely. Wi-Fi and Bluetooth protections have been beefed up as well so apps can’t infer your
location by using that information. Finally, Apple is offering the
option for customers to sign in to apps through Apple rather
than their personal email or social media accounts, revealing
as little personal information as possible.
While there were no other major surprises, it’s clear that
the folks at Apple have been hard at work to improve a variety
of applications and features. Notes will finally offer support for
shared folders, time-synced lyrics join the Music app, Reminders has been reworked to allow you to not only set where and
when to send notifications but also the people you might like
to tag. Maps has been majorly expanded and now offers the
ability to organize your favorite locations into collections and
sharable lists. These and other improvements indicate an ongoing commitment to thoroughness and quality, providing the
maximum from each app and device (see page 12).
Apple Watch to Analyze Your Fitness Trends
The Apple Watch will offer
some exciting health features that Apple did a great
job of keeping under wraps
leading up to WWDC. For
starters, a new Trend tab in
the Activity app compares
behavior over time. The updated watchOS 6 software
will stack each 90-day period up against the last 365
days of use and offer coaching based on that data. New
metrics, including flights of
stairs climbed and walking
pace will allow your watch
to give you more meaningful and helpful suggestions
about your activity goals.
Additional new health features include menstrual cycle
tracking to manage and track data about duration of period,
symptoms, fertility, and more. A hearing health app called
Noise will spot check audio input and let wearers know when
sound levels are in a range that can impact their hearing over
Other long-awaited improvements include an App Store just
for the Apple Watch, which you’ll be able to access directly
from the device. One telling bit of news gives us an idea of
the direction Apple Watch use is taking—new developer tools
allow for watch-only apps that work independently of an iOS
app. This is one step closer to my dream of an Apple Watch
that you don’t need to pair with an iPhone that can act as an
independent phone and wearable all in one.
The iPad Gets Its Own OS
In the spirit of optimizing software for each device, the iPad
will break from the pack of iOS devices and run on iPadOS.
The new operating system has its roots in iOS but offers features to match the tablet’s larger displays.
Apple has been marketing its line of tablets as an alternative
to the laptop for some time now, and iPadOS will close the convenience gap between laptops and iPads significantly. The new
operating system will allow iPads to use an improved version of
Split View, a redesigned Home screen with widgets and more
apps per page, an even more responsive Apple Pencil, and a
list of new keyboard shortcuts. iPad users will even be able to
work in two Microsoft Word documents on the same screen.
Other convenient developments include thumb drive support
and desktop-class Safari with tabs and a download manager.
The Death of i Tunes
The iTunes that we’ve known for all these years is splitting
into three apps: Apple Music, Apple Podcasts, and Apple TV.
Rather than stuffing music, movies, TV shows, podcasts, and
apps into one gigantic app, content will be streamlined and
easier to find. Guess what else? No more iTunes popping up