While we cannot be at WWDC, there are more than enough sources on the internet to keep us, and you the reader, informed. As products and features are announced, we will be adding them right here.
So what can we expect? First iOS6 (Apple has not exactly covered up banners promoting it), Mountain Lion, and maybe even a few new Macs. But maybe there will be a few other unexpected announcements!
So here goes:
Tim Cook has taken the stage, and has started thanking all the developers who arrived for WWDC. He also mentions that the conference was sold out in under two hours.
Apple has now 650,000 apps on the appstore, with 225,000 just for the iPad.
Over 30 billion downloads from the Appstore, more than $5 Billion dollars have been made by developers.
The new Macbook Air sports the same shape, but now has a dual core Ivy Bridge processor, and up to 8GB RAM, and also up to 512GB SSD. USB 3 ports, 720p facetime camera, 11 and 13 inch models. 8GB looks like an optional upgrade (won’t be part of standard specs). Available today in the US.
The Macbook Pro also gets the new Ivy Bridge processor (in quad core form in the 15 inch model), upto 8GB RAM (but prev gen was 16GB max?). Seems to still ship with HDD instead of SSD standard. Boo. Same great 7 hour battery life. Same chassis.
Apple suddenly announced what it calls the “next generation” Macbook Pro – while cloaking the device with a black cloth. It’s thinner than before (thinner than a finger) – optical drive is gone. “It’s 15.4 inches across, but it’s pixel density — are you sitting down? It’s 2880 x 1880, four times the amount of pixels.” Retina display! The operating system is already ready for the new Retina display, including all the Apple supplied software like iPhoto, Aperture, Final Cut Pro etc. Still has the full range of ports, but now also has HDMI, two Thunderbolt ports, and USB 3. Apple is taking away the Firewire port, but does make a Thunderbolt to Firewire adaptor. SSD drives – up to 768GB. Next generation Kepler Nvidia graphics. Seven hour battery life, with up to 30 days standby. Prices start at $2199. That means R20,000+ in South Africa. Ouch.
Mac OSX Mountain Lion:
Apple demoed Mountain Lion on stage – it has a big focus on closing the ecosystem loop with iOS devices. Apps like Reminders, Notes and Messages will sync in iCloud, which means you always have the latest data regardless where you might work from.
Notification center finally consolidates all notification on the right of the screen, which is accessed by a simple gesture.
Siri-based dictation is finally built into the Mac, just like on iPad.
Sharing is built into the OS, which means you can quickly post to services like Twitter. Facebook is suspiciously absent.
Safari also now combines the address bar and search field like Chrome.
iCloud syncing tabs will keep track of open browser tabs on your different devices.
Will launch with 200+ new features.
Siri gets a big upgrade. Notably sports stats, and better restuarant booking services. We are not getting our hopes up that it will work in SA. Apple will now also remove the silly location limitations though.
Siri can now finally also launch apps, and gains something called ”eyes-free” mode which will need support by car manufacturers.
Facebook integration, just like with Twitter.
Reply to an incoming call with a message. Handy.
New “do not disturb feature” for light sleepers.
Facetime can now be used over cellular.
Apple ID and cellphone number will now be combined – excellent for iMessages integration on the iPad. If someone Facetime calls you, you can answer from any of your iDevices. Time will tell whether this will actually work.
VIP feature for people who will always get your attention on the phone.
Can finally open password protected Office files. Microsoft might get a hefty royalty from that.
Passbook announced – kind of like a wallet for your passes and cards. This just begs to be integrated with NFC.
New Maps with navigation built in. Will crowd source traffic flow from iPhone like Waze, and have Siri integration.
New Maps also has Flyover, which is similar to Google’s new 25 degree imaging.
New “Lost phone” features – allows you to send a custom number to your phone, which the finder can just tap to call.
Custom signatures for different email accounts.
All in all WWDC 2012 was one of the best keynotes in a long time. While most of the products were evolutionary upgrades (except for the “next generation” Macbook Pro), the sheer volume of new products made for a very exciting keynote.
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