Introduction to Highlights of WWDC 2015 keynote
The Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) is annually held conference by Apple Inc at Moscone West in San Francisco, California. The main aim behind organising this conference is to exhibit new software as well as technologies that Apple has for apple developers.
The list of attendee comprises of CEOs of company, software developers as well as great fan of Apple. This conference allows attendee to participate in hands-on labs with Apple engineers and detailed discussion on queries of developers. This event was host by Steve Jobs uptil WWDC 2011 and then followed by Tim Cook, CEO of Apple Inc.
The tickets to WWDC is confirmed through lottery system. Once an attendee registers for WWDC on official Apple site his/her selection is done on random basis. All lucky winners are notified by apple for the same.
A developer ticket to WWDC can cost around $1599 and the event is held from June 8 to June 12, 2015 at Moscone West in San Francisco, California. For those who did not received notification from Apple regarding WWDC ticket some sessions will be streamed live throughout the event and most of them will be available to watch on-demand.
The number of attendee has increased every year. In WWDC 2006 the number of attendees were between 2,000 and 4,000. However, in WWDC 2007 there were more than 5,000 attendees. In later WWDC i.e. from 2008 onwards the attendee were capped at 5,000. In WWDC 2015 the attendees where from 70 countries and amongst them 80% were first-time. The attendee list included 350 student scholarship winners. The youngest scholarship winner for WWDC 15 was girl aged 12 from New York.
Top 3 Categories of WWDC 2015 keynote
Lets check with details of WWDC 2015 keynote. WWDC 15 was segmented to three different categories :
- OS X
1. OS X 10.x – Yosemite
Yosemite as described by Craig Federighi (senior Vice President of Apple Software Engineering) is big, bold and beautiful release with gorgeous new UI and breakthrough new features like Continuity which allows to continue your work left on other device. For eg. You are drafting a mail on MacBook and all of sudden you switch to iPhone then same draft mail pops-up from the place you left it.
The adoption rate for Yosemite is incredible which sees 55% of mac users are on Yosemite within 8 months duration span. This is really incredible as compared to Windows 8.1 that has just 7% of adoption rate. OS X Yosemite has fastest adoption rate for any PC operating system ever. The new name for OS X is El Capitan. The new OS is improved under two categories : Experience and Performance.
Experience of new OS is improvised by enhancing Spotlight, Built-in apps and Windows management. It is easier to locate cursor in new OS X EI Capitan by simply shaking the track pad and cursor magnifies itself (shown in screenshot 3).
If you working on Safari browser and want few sites to read for later then you can simply pin it (shown in screenshot 4). Spotlight has become more intelligent by providing detailed result for eg. You can search for current score for cricket match in spotlight! You can resize the result pane of spotlight and even move the spotlight.
El capitan provide better window management by redesigning mission control. You can see list of all windows open by simply swiping three gesture finger (shown in screenshot 5). You can even create spilt-screen in El Capitan for eg. reading cricket score on left screen and drafting mail on right screen (shown in screenshot 6).
Performance has been optimised throughout system in El capitan. Below are list to name it few :
- App can launch 1.4x times faster
- 2x times faster switching between apps
- Time to get first mail messages is 2x fast
- Opening PDF in preview is 4x times faster
- Architectural changes in Metal for high performance games
- Metal introduced for Mac
- 50% improvement in rendering performance
- 40% improvement in rendering efficiency
- 10x faster in draw call performance
El Capitan is available to developers on the same day of WWDC 15 keynote. Public beta for the same would be available in July 2015 on beta.apple.com and free upgrade this fall.
iOS 8 has been really phenomenon with adoption rate of 83% user as compared to Android 5 having 12%. iOS 9 has been improved by adding intelligence, raising the foundation to next level. Below are some statistics about Siri in iOS 8 :
- Siri has 1 billion requests per week
- 40% more accurate over the last year
- 40% more faster over the last year
- Beautiful new UI
Siri has become more intelligent with reminder can be set instantly. For eg. Reminder me take file tomorrow morning while leaving for office will set reminder for the same. iOS 9 brings Siri as great proactive assistant.
When you plug in earphone to iPhone device during morning walk you can automatically see playlist on lock screen. It determines what to play at what time and at what place.
Invitation received on email are automatically saved in your calendar without needing you to open the email. iOS 9 offers great new feature of predicting unknown caller. It scans emails and contact details to determine who is calling from unknown number (shown in screenshot 7).
Search in iOS 9 is really great where in you can search videos from popular sites such as vimeo, vine, youtube etc. In iOS 9 search has new API for it.
When search is performed the results contain deep link into it i.e. When you click on result it will redirect to content and also offers Return to search to return back.
The best thing about iOS 9 is that user privacy is respected i.e. operations performed by iPhone user is anonymous, it is not associated with Apple ID, it is not linked to other Apple services, it is not shared with third parties and most importantly everything remains local.
Apple Pay is mobile payment and digital wallet service introduced by Apple Inc (shown in screenshot 8). It allows users to make payments using compatible iPhone and Apple watch devices. It is super easy, secure and private way to pay.
During the initial launch of Apple Pay it supported credit and debit card. It has now 2500 banks supporting Apple Pay. In this fall Discover will bring Apple Pay to more than 50 million card members. It is supported by both small and large merchant across US. Using Apple Pay the check out rate has increased by 2x.
After great response for Apple Pay in US it is set to roll out in UK as well. It will be launched in UK in July 2015. Apple has already tied-up with eight prominent banks in UK that will cover 70% of credit and debit cards. There are more than 2,50,000 merchants that will support Apple Pay in UK.
iOS 9 allows you to add Store debit and credit cards. It also offers Reward Cards. Apple Pay will always present the right card at store and hence you’ll never miss reward for shopping.
The passbook present in iOS 8 has been renamed to wallet in iOS 9 (shown in screenshot 9). It is one place for your credit and debit cards, loyalty cards, boarding passes and more.
Notes app has been revamped in iOS 9. It has handy toolbar with which you can format notes content (shown in screenshot 10).
You can also create a check list in Notes app (shown in screenshot 11). It allows you to add photos, drawing by sketches and also embedded links (shown in screenshot 11).
Notes edited on iPhone device are synced with iPad and Mac as well via iCloud.
Apple has invested a lot in Maps to improve its service. Apple Maps has 5 billion requests per week, usage on iOS is 3.5x times higher than the next leading mapping app.
Transit has been specifically created for drivers that shows buses, trains and subway stations. If you tap on a station you can see all the lines that run through it with departure times. It provides step-by-step directions even for walking along with time (shown in screenshot 12).
Siri has been trained for transit and hence it can assist you in travelling.
Apple has introduced new application called News in iOS 9. It is beautiful content from the world greatest sources and is personalised particularly for users. You can create personalised news by selecting categories you like such as travel, science, politics, sports etc (shown in screenshot 13).
You can bookmark an article that you want to read later. You can even set favourites that store collection you like.
News app has been ground up with privacy of user in mind. The content you read is not linked to to other Apple services. Also individual data is not shared with third parties. News will be launched in UK, US and Australia initially.
QuickType feature has been introduced for iOS 9 keyboard that shows suggestion bar on top of keyboard while you are typing. This suggestion bar is enhanced in iOS 9 with shortcuts for cut, copy, paste and even capture photo, add attachments (shown in screenshot 15).
You can convert keyboard to trackpad instantly by placing two fingers and dragging it. If you connect physical keyboard to iPad then you can determine shortcut key to perform faster operations. You can also perform app switching in iPad.
iPad has always supported multitasking like task switcher, four finger gesture in iOS 8. Multitasking is taken to whole new level in iOS 9. When you click on home button task switcher appears with new style compared to iOS 8.
iOS 9 provides a new feature called Slide Over, Spilt View and Picture in Picture for multitasking. These feature will be available for iPad Air, iPad Air 2, iPad mini 2 and iPad mini 3.
Slide Over provides a user-invoked overlay view on the right side of the screen that lets a user pick a secondary app to view and play with it (shown in screenshot 16).
Spilt View displays two side-by-side apps, letting the user view, resize, and interact with both of them (shown in screenshot 17).
Picture in Picture allows user to play video in a moveable, resizable window that floats over the apps onscreen (shown in screenshot 18).
iOS 9 takes care of device battery usage. It provides a new feature called “Low Power mode”
If your iPhone device battery drops below 20 percent power you’ll get a system pop-up message that warns you of low battery power and offers Low Power mode (shown in screenshot 19). If you wish to turn on Low Power mode simply select it from the pop-up message.
Once Low Power mode is enabled it will reduce animations throughout the system, decrease the time before the screen darkens and make all possible efforts to keep your battery life for a bit longer.
If you wish to enable Low Power mode at any time then you can achieve this from Settings. You can determine whether Low Power mode is activated or not by simply looking at the battery indicator present at top right side of the screen.
It is normally green for sufficient battery charge available, red for low battery charge available and yellow if Low Power mode is enabled.
iOS 9 provides easy to protect data on iCloud using two-factor authentication mechanism.
Apple has done major changes to architecture for over-the-air update for iOS 9 and hence it requires only 1.3 GB of free space as compared to iOS 8 requiring 4.6 GB.
Apple has provided below features in iOS 9 for developers :
Search extensibility Audio unit extension VPN plugin extension
Swift 2 Third party notifications Direct document
Map customisation OCR accessory setup UI testing in Xcode
Notification actions Sensor profile App thinning
New Health data types Code coverage Motorised windows profile
Flyover and Walkthrough Gaming APIs Layout guide
Shortcut bar Automated shades profile Object oriented contacts
New multitasking APIs New Homekit profiles iCloud open in place
Home security profile Storyboard references Stack View
Wireless CarPlay HomeKit iCloud remote access App transport security API
App thinning allows the installation of apps as per the device on which it is being downloaded. Thus optimising it by occupying minimum disk space and allow future updates that can be applied by Apple. This helps in downloading apps much faster and allows more space for other apps thereby providing a better user experience.
Gaming APIs has been enhanced by adding new features in SpriteKit, SceneKit and Metal frameworks. New frameworks such as GameplayKit, Model I/O and ReplayKit have been added to provide a better gaming experience.
HealthKit APIs has been enhanced by adding new categories such as Hydration level in body, Reproductive Health and UV exposure (shown in screenshot 20).
HomeKit APIs contains feature such as control room temperature, Locks and Lights. In iOS 9 apple adds support for Windows Shades, Sensors such as motion sensors, smoke sensors, and Security systems. These features can be accessed remotely and securely using iCloud (shown in screenshot 21).
CarPlay already supports audio player and in iOS 9 it supports apps made by car manufacturers (shown in screenshot 22) . This will allow user to control features of the car such as the air conditioning, vehicle lock etc. It supports different variety of screens, wider aspect ratio and screens with higher dpi. The best thing about CarPlay in iOS 9 is that it will allow users to wirelessly connect to their vehicles.
Swift is an innovative programming language with modern features that produces safe, lightning fast apps for iOS, OS X and watchOS. Apple has announced next big release Swift 2 for iOS 9 at WWDC 2015.
Swift 2 builds on the incredible popularity and power of swift, delivering features that help developers write even better code. This includes advanced error-handling, availability checking and lots of enhancements to syntax.
Apple has made swift as an open source project which will help in targeting large audience. Swift 2 comes up with many new features some of them are error handling model, synthesised headers in xcode, protocol extensions, swift 1.2 to 2.0 migrator, availability checking, pattern matching in “if”.
This was all about iOS 9 detailed feature announced at WWDC 2015 keynote. iOS 9 supports all devices that iOS 8 supports. The list of devices supported by iOS 9 are mentioned below :
- iPhone 4s, iPhone 5, iPhone 5c, iPhone 5s, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus
- iPod touch 5th gen
- iPad 2, iPad 3rd gen, iPad 4th gen, iPad Air, iPad Air 2, iPad mini, iPad mini 2, iPad mini 3
WatchOS is the operating system that runs on the Apple Watch which is equivalent to iOS runs on iPhones and iPads, and OS X runs on Macs. Apple has announced watchOS 2 for Apple Watch and it will be made available in coming fall of 2015.
The enhancements for watchOS 2 are as follows :
a. Timepiece function
b. Improvement in communication
c. Improvement in health and fitness
e. Support for Apple Pay
f. Support for Apple Maps (Transit)
g. Support for Siri
watchOS 2 has really great timepiece. You can set photo face as wallpaper or set an photo album that will change photo each time you raise wrist. You can also see time-lapse face (i.e. photo shade changes as per time) for some location such as london, new york, hong kong, shanghai etc (shown in screenshot 23).
You can also change the complications (i.e. stuffs that appear on home screen) in watchOS 2. It allows app developer to make their own complications. For eg. You can set flight time, weather information, cricket score, charge level of electric car etc.
watchOS 2 has a new feature called Time Travel (shown in screenshot 23). It allows you to see list of future stuffs such as weather today evening, meeting scheduled post lunch etc. It also allows you to see stuffs that has already happened such as yesterday’s weather, meetings attended etc. You can travel in future by rotating Digital Crown in clockwise direction whereas rotating it in anti-clock wise direction will take you in past. While performing this Time Travel you can get back to current time by single pressing Digital Crown.
Apple has introduced a new feature called Nightstand mode for watchOS 2. This allows you to use Apple Watch as a timepiece while charging during bed-time. This can replace your bedside alarm clock literally. While in nightstand mode apple watch switches to landscape mode thereby giving better view of time.
This mode has zero configurability i.e. it’s either on or off. When it is on you can see a digital clock in centre with date and time details below, a battery indicator depicting percentage charged on upper right corner, alarm icon in the upper left corner if you have set an alarm (shown in screenshot 23).
b. Improvement in communication
Apple watch is great way of communicating. You can press on Digital Crown to see list of all friends. WatchOS 2 offers different sets of friends and it also allows to add a friend by tapping on the plus sign.
You can send drawing using multiple colours using Digital Touch. The earlier version of watchOS allows to read emails but now watchOS 2 offers you to reply to email as well. The new OS allows you to take FaceTime calls on your Apple Watch (shown in screenshot 24).
c. Improvement in Health and fitness
watchOS 2 allows you to run health and fitness native apps to run on apple watch. So the content will be added directly to Activity present in apple watch.
You can also use Siri for health and fitness. For eg. Raise you wrist and say “Hey Siri start a 15 minutes run in the park” so this will start workout app for you (shown in screenshot 25).
If you have achieved a target then this pops-up as an achievement that you can share on social networks like facebook and twitter.
d. Support for Apple Pay
Apple Inc has introduced mobile payment and digital wallet service called Apple Pay. It allows users make payments using compatible devices. Below are list of devices that conforms to Apple Pay specifications :
- iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus
- iPhone 5, iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c
- iPad Air 2, iPad mini 3
- Apple Watch
The service that Apple Pay use to communicate wirelessly with point of sale systems is Near Field Communication (NFC) antenna, Apple’s Touch ID and Passbook.
To make payment at store using iPhone just hold your device near the contactless reader with your finger on Touch ID (applicable for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 plus). Using this you don’t even have to look at the screen to know you details of payment. When payment is successful a subtle vibration and beep occurs.
You can make payment using Apple Watch, simply double-click the side button (referred to as Digital Crown) and hold the display of Apple Watch near to contactless reader (shown in screenshot 27). You can confirm payment information with gentle tap and beep.
e. Support for Transit
Transit allows you to navigate your city smoothly by providing directions. Tap on Transit app to open it up. It’ll give you button to get directions to your home or office and another button that provides locations that you’ve travelled recently.
The rest of screen scrolls through the nearest public transit stops, only displaying the transit options (such as subway, bus, trains, etc.).
Once you get desired directions from Transit, the entire journey is displayed on one screen in a simple, condensed manner. If you are interested to know more about specific location then just tap on that specific step to pull up a map.
The plus point of Transit is that it displays the entire list of steps on one scrolling screen (shown in screenshot 28).
f. Support for Siri
watchOS 2 allows you to get bus directions using transit with the help of Siri. For eg. You can ask Siri “Hey Siri show me bus directions for Ferry building”. This will open transit app with step-by-step direction for destination.
You can also control things at home using Siri. For eg. “Hey Siri set the dinner scene”. This will adjust device in sync with HomeKit devices to make a dinner scene.
You can also ask instagram glance to Siri. This will show instagram glance that you haven’t selected. This indicates that you can show third-party content right on your watch using Siri.
This has been a guide to Highlights of WWDC 2015 keynote. Here we discuss the basic concept, Top 3 Categories of WWDC 2015 keynote respectively. You can also go through our other suggested articles to learn more –