let WWDC = "World Wide Developers Conference"
var WWDC16 = "a ton of expectations"
print(WWDC+" is coming with "+WWDC16+"!")
The stage is (almost) set. In less than a week, we will witness the largest Apple event of this year. The World Wide Developers Conference will bring together thousands of iOS, Mac, watchOS and tvOS developers from hundreds of countries around the world. And in all the fanfare surrounding the event, Apple will show us new operating systems and softwares, and will showcase some revolutionary new hardware (or at least that’s what I hope).
The biggest ‘want’ this year is a MacBook Pro refresh. The MacBook Pro with Retina Display is still a great computer, but it doesn’t run the latest version of Intel’s Core CPUs. While Intel is expected to release its 7th Gen Core (Kaby Lake) CPUs this year, the MacBook Pro with Retina Display is still stuck on the 4th Gen Core CPUs. We hope Apple will include at least the 6th Gen Core Skylake CPUs from 2015.
Rumours have confirmed that Apple will release a new MacBook Pro this year; however, as per latest speculation, it may be delayed from its WWDC launch to a September release. The 2016 MBP will not only sport the latest Intel processors, but will also be thinner and lighter (it may even replace the beloved MacBook Air) and will have an OLED touch bar in place of the function keys. It will supposedly also include the TouchID fingerprint sensor and may only have 4 USB C ports (oh, really?) as per leaked pictures of the body (from Cult Of Mac).
Another much requested hardware update is a new Thunderbolt Display. The current Thunderbolt Display is extinct - it doesn’t have a Retina Display, uses old Thunderbolt technology and lacks the looks of a modern Mac. We are expecting a new 27” Apple Thunderbolt Display with a 5K Retina Display (like on the iMac) and an integrated GPU to power the setup. The GPU will essentially bring 5K resolution capabilities to lower-end MacBook laptops and the Mac Mini.
On the software side of things, the lack of major rumours makes it difficult to guess what’s coming. Historically, we’ve had all operating system updates happen at WWDC, and it should be the same deal this year too. The next OS X version, codenamed ‘Fuji’, is probably going to bring Siri capabilities to Mac, as per the below leaked screenshot (from MacRumors). There is some speculation stating that the next OS X version will be called ‘macOS’ to go along with Apple’s general naming scheme of ‘iOS’, ‘watchOS’ and ‘tvOS’. In fact, the term ‘MacOS’ was spotted on Apple’s Environmental website recently, making this a strong possibility.
With iOS and watchOS, we aren’t expecting any huge overhauls. We may finally get the ability to hide stock Apple apps. I am also hoping to see a ‘Dark Mode’ in iOS, following the footsteps of Dark Mode on OS X and Night Shift on iOS 9.3. tvOS is also going to get an update, although we aren’t sure what new features are coming. Hope Apple surprises us with some good software!
One rumour that has caught up a lot in popularity is that Apple Music will receive a complete overhaul. While the service has crossed over 13 million users worldwide, a number of reviews complain about the Music app’s interface. As an Apple Music subscriber myself (I use the Music app and iTunes day-in and day-out), I too feel that the app is too clunky, slow and complicated to use: very unlike Apple. So what can we expect? 9to5Mac reports that Apple Music will receive "a redesigned user-interface, a few new functions, and reorganization as well as simplification of existing features.” In addition, a large emphasis will be on album art. One of the biggest complains with Apple Music is the way music is organised, and 9to5Mac reports thats the ‘New’ section will be replaced by a ‘Browse’ section with improved categorisation and more variety of music. All this, I believe, should make Apple Music a more compelling subscription service.
And that is what we expect from the event on Monday. You can watch the event on your computer at the WWDC website, on your iPhone/iPad using the WWDC app, or on Apple TV. The keynote starts at 10:00 AM PDT (which translates to 10:30 PM IST) on Monday, 13th June. I’ve embedded a handy countdown to the event on the Technonerds’ Live blog.
P.S. I would like to cite that all of the information contained in this post comes from various articles from these sources: MacWorld, MacRumors, 9to5Mac, Cult Of Mac, EverythingApplePro (YouTube) and a variety of other blogs/news agencies.