WWDC20: Apple's new iOS14, Mac to integrate Apple Silicon and Big Sur, the new iPad, and more
All eyes on Apple
The wheels are still very much turning for Apple — coronavirus or not. Their long-awaited features for the iPhone, Macbook, iPad, and Apple Watch were announced recently during their Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC20), conducted virtually this year due to the pandemic. This year's isolated congregation revealed a slew of design-skewed updates for the tech giant's fleet of products, while making mention of a next big OS update. Here are some of the highlights from the conference.
iOS14: A brand new face
Expect an all-new homescreen on Apple's new iOS14 interface, which lets you use their new App Library that groups applications together by category, including recently added apps and suggestions. Widgets will be revamped as well, coming in different sizes and now being able to be dragged onto your home screen from the panel. Siri also boasts new translation features and will experience a new look, no longer taking up your entire home screen.
No car keys? No problem.
Apple's reminding us that we're truly living in the future, as it does away with clunky car keys and switches them out for new car-unlocking features right from your Wallet app on the iPhone. They've started out by partnering with BMW to unveil their new wireless car-unlocking feature, which also allows for car-sharing features with your friends.
A beefed up iPadOS14
After the introduction of the new Magic Keyboard tethered to the iPad Pro, Apple is trying to match up its iPad features to something leveled to your Macbook. We're talking streamlined features, such as a new Search bar that pops up on the side without taking over the entire screen, as well as a more practical side bar that can actually get things done much faster than ever before.
Big Sur and better
The next Mac software update, named Big Sur, will feature an enhanced, neater interface that makes the Mac look more similar to your iPhone and iPad, such as by letting you access brightness and volume from the top of your screen, much like the Control Centre. Safari extensions will also make for a more customisable homepage, with built-in translation and privacy reports on specific websites now available to users. Big Sur will also mark the transition to Apple Silicon — an in-house chip that's currently used in iPads and iPhones. So expect faster performance and a longer battery life in our future Apple notebooks. Sounds like the lines are getting continuously blurred between the iPad and Macbook...
Apple watch gets sleep and handwashing features
watchOS7, the new software update, will amp up sleep tracking technology, by using motion sensors, heart-rate sensors and microphones to gather sleep data. To also encourage the habit of personal hygiene (given what the world is going through), the smartwatch will also feature automatic handwashing detection, which displays a countdown for how long you should wash your hands for. Other updates also include a new dance workout, as well as reminders on maintaining the watch's battery life.