Worldwide Developers Conference: What does that mean for Apple users?

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The suspense is over. Apple has officially announced all of their newest and brightest ideas to enhance the technology world at the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) on Monday, June 8, in San Francisco.

Senior vice president of software engineering, Craig Federighi, joked with the audience, “How do you name the 10th version of OS X? We’re running out of cat names.” He revealed the future OS X versions will be California themed starting with Mavericks, referring to a California surfing spot.

For Mac users concerned with battery life, a 1.5x faster wake from standby mode will increase battery life. The new line of MacBook Airs, available today, will feature all-day battery life.

What is the main point of interest for Apple users with the new OS X? Increased convergence. Apple has made it all the more easier for users with multiple Apple devices to go from device to device, making everything accessible from any device at any time.

Apple’s senior vice president of industrial design, Jony Ive, received a standing ovation from developers upon the announcement of the new iOS 7 interface that responds to movement. Cook describes the next iOS as “the biggest change since the iPhone.” The change is like getting a new phone but one you already know how to use as described by Federighi.

The design of iOS 7 has changed dramatically.  Apple’s slogan for the new design is “When something is designed to work beautifully, it tends to look that way too.” On Apple’s website, they state that they have been approaching designing their iOS the wrong way, never designing anything with the intention of looking beautiful. Ultimately, the goal of iOS 7 “Was to create an experience that was simpler, more useful, and more enjoyable – while building on the things people love about iOS.” The biggest design difference is space. Each screen looks less cluttered, keeping it very simple.

While Apple has gotten rid of most of the clutter on the screen, they have made the weather app more like looking out your window and a lot less like checking the weather on your phone. Depending on the weather, you could have storm clouds raining down, snowflakes falling, or some bright sun shining down on your screen.

All of the necessities are at the tips of your fingers. Just a swipe up of the finger from any screen will allow the user to access airplane mode, Bluetooth, wi-fi, screen brightness, do not disturb, orientation lock, music controls, flashlight, timer, calculator, or camera.

A picture is worth a thousand words, so why not have a thousand features too, right? Apple is heading in that direction. The last iOS introduced the panorama feature while this update introduces the capability to take square photos. Sound familiar? Apple seems to be taking on Instagram with this new photo format as well as the introduction of filters. Users will be able to choose from eight filters to add to their photos. With the enhancement of photo viewing as well, users will be able to view photos as collections, moments, and years which will groups photos based on time and location. AirDrop will make sharing these photos even simpler by allowing users to easily press the share button to send to anyone nearby.

Siri has expanded to the other gender. Users now have the option of a female or a male voice. Siri will have a faster response time, be easierto understand, use more resources, and perform new tasks including returning calls, playing voicemail, controlling iTunes Radio, and more. Another change for Siri includes a makeover. Siri now will fade into view on top of the user’s current screen. Audio waves will move across the screen to alert users that Siri is processing the user’s request.

With Apple’s introduction of a service to stream digital music will Pandora loose its popularity? iTunes Radio will be a radio-like streaming of music based on the user’s interest. To increase sales, integrated “buy” buttons will encourage users to download the song being streamed also adding convenience for users wishing to purchase the song.

Always forgetting your passwords? The new iCloud Keychain service will solve your problem by remembering key chains and passwords. It will even generate a unique password for you and remember it every time you create a new account. Additionally, iCloud will store your credit card information to save users from the hassle of typing it in for every online purchase. These features work across all Apple devices running iOS 7 or OS X Mavericks.

Planning a trip? OS X Mavericks will allow users to look up travel times between locations on the calendar. The travel time will even be added to the calendar.

Google Drive is faced with some new competition as well with the integration of iCloud and iWork. Previously, iCloud was only a syncing service while iWork was meant for creating. With iWork for iCloud, users can create documents with editing capability. These documents can be created and edited from any computer, Mac or Windows, by using a web browser.

While Apple has not failed to impress many of its users, others were disappointed in the lack of new hardware and devices. Will the arrival of the new iOS come with the introduction of a new iPhone in the fall? Until then, Apple users will be anxiously awaiting the arrival of new features in the updated software.

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