Apple announces iOS16, unveiling message recall, other wish list features
Company debuts new operating systems, silicon, laptops, plus updates to platforms like CarPlay and SharePlay: Apple unveils software for car dashboard
June 7, 2022 11:14 AM
Apple opened Monday its first in-person developers conference since the onset of the pandemic with chips, maps and a way to delete precipitously sent messages, but was mum on any virtual reality offerings.
The tech giant touted new features and capabilities being built into the operating systems running iPhone, Apple Watch and more, along with a speedy new MacBook Air computer driven by a second generation of its custom chip.
Apple chief Tim Cook and his team showed off coming innovations during a keynote presentation at its first developers conference to be held at its campus in the Silicon Valley city of Cupertino -- and the first in-person version of the gathering since Covid-19 struck.
"It's so good to see you all," Cook said from a stage set up on a lawn next to Apple's ring-shaped headquarters, as an audience of several thousand developers cheered in the morning sunshine.
No updates, however, were forthcoming on a rumored virtual reality operating system or hardware.
Still, developers will get to meet with Apple engineers during the weeklong conference, and even work in a new building with soundproof rooms to let them discuss ideas without being overheard.
Aside from new MacBook models, the event was a deep dive into coming new generations of operating systems for Apple's line-up of offerings.
Apple will start letting people delete and edit messages after they have been sent as part of the latest update to its operating software, as well as customizable options for the iPhone main screen.
Users of its digital wallet should soon also be able to pay for purchases in installments.
Relying increasingly on custom made chips has enabled Apple to make its devices and software work more seamlessly together, and catch up a bit to features offered by rivals such as Google Maps and even Microsoft Xbox video game platform for Windows-powered computers.
Creative Strategies analyst Carolina Milanesi saw it as Apple filling "users' wish-list," adding capabilities to make its apps, services or hardware the natural option in an increasingly competitive market.
"They are listening to what the users are saying and they're making changes," Milanesi said.
As increased dependence on computers and the internet caused by the pandemic shows no sign of abating, and by better tuning hardware and software for convenience promises to keep people in Apple's money-making ecosystem, the analyst added.
Apple Watch OS9 Updates
Apple will add four new watch faces, including Astronomy, Lunar, Play Time, and Metropolitan. While Astronomy will show cloud coverage across the globe, Lunar will adjust for Chinese, Jewish, and other calendars for use inclusively.
New banner notifications and active apps will be pinned at the top of the watch for easy access and notifications. The watch will also see an expansion of podcast coverage. It will allow users to find new podcasts to listen to without having to search for suggestions.
For workout enthusiasts, workout coverage will expand to include workout and recovery time. Users can adjust alerts to make sure athletes keep a target heart rate zone and a power target. If users opt to repeat workouts or running trails, the Workout app will now save past workouts to track training progress.
The Fitness app will also be available on all iOS 16 phones, so those without an Apple Watch will still be able to track their fitness journey.
Apple Sleep expanded to include how long users slept, the stage of sleep they were in, and for how long. This data can also be used across the Research app to help other users get optimal sleep.
Expected to get FDA approval shortly, the aFib heart rate tracker can monitor users' heart rates and let users know what percentage of their heart beats in the last 24 hours has been irregular. Users can share this data with their doctors, too. Additionally, the watch can help users set reminders to take medications, share health data with family members, and notify if medications may clash with each other.
All-New Lock Screen
The update features an all-new lock screen that can be personalized to your preference with different styles, color filters, fonts, and type faces. You can also add new widgets -- from calendars to weather updates -- to optimize your day. Additionally, it will come with a photo shuffle to see your favorite images throughout the day.
Notifications will also roll in with the latest iOS 16 update rather than take up the entirety of your screen.
Last year, the tech giant introduced Shared with You and have expanded it with Shared with You API, which will allow users to see shared content live. Now, the latest update allows users to capture those live updates whenever they look at their phones.
Additionally, SharePlay extends to messages, so users can share SharePlay experience through messaging. The latest update also allows you to edit, unsend, and mark messages as unread.
Dictation also saw some major software updates that allow users to swap seamlessly between voice dictation and the touchscreen keyboard. Dictation automatically will add updates to the text and will include emoji dictation.
Apple Pay Later
While Tap to Pay will see expanded acceptance across more retailers and websites, the tech giant announced the implementation of Apple Pay Later.
Apple Pay Later will split the cost of any purchase into four equal payments over six weeks with zero interest. It will be available on most e-commerce platforms, starting with eShopify.
Apple has announced multi-stop routing, so users can build out a map to get to their destinations without circling back. Maps will also include cycling and other local areas to enhance your experience across multiple countries.
Additionally, the company expanded 3D mapping visualizations coverage to eleven new countries, including France and New Zealand.
In conjunction with iOS 16's Live Activities, the Apple TV app will now bring live updates for users' favorite sporting events. The app will also stream up to two games weekly.
Apple News will also implement sports live coverage, including commentary. This update will be available in the US, Canada, UK, and Australia.
iCloud Shared Photo Library
In addition to shared activities, Apple will implement sharing settings for images. Users can share permissions for friends and family to add to their iCloud, allowing up to five people to access and contribute to their photo library.
Safety Check Privacy Settings
Apple also announced Safety Check, a new privacy setting to review and quickly revoke passwords and location sharing in the event of an emergency. Users will be able to keep full control over their privacy and sharing settings.
Matter Smart Home App
Apple announced Matter, an all-new home app that helps users navigate and control their smart home. Users will be able to get an overview of their home stats in a single image, and the app has new features such as lights and climate controls. Over 100 companies worked with Apple to implement a cohesive smart home system.
Users can break out categories and can check cameras with ease. Additionally, users can add a home widget to the lock screen to keep tabs on their home.
CarPlay saw an update reinventing the car experience. Working with automakers, Apple implemented widgets to provide information at a glance. This next generation of CarPlay uses new layouts to optimize users' driving experiences.
Personalization settings allow users to curate themes and styles for gauges, so users can get the most out of it when they're driving. Apple worked with major vehicle retailers to expand on this experience, and vehicles will get this new implementation starting early next year.
The next generation chip, the M2, was announced during Apple's event. Utilizing power-efficient performance technology and unified-memory architecture, the M2 chip uses 20 billion transistors to send 100 GB of unified memory per second -- a 50% increase from the M1 chip. It boasts four high-performance cores and four high-efficiency cores for 1.9 times more power.
It will also use a 10-core GPU, delivering up to 25% more power and 35% more performance than the M1 chip. This GPU reduces the power use by up to 20%.
MacBook Air with M2 Chip
Completely redesigned around the M2 Chip, the latest MacBook Air comes with a new all-aluminum design. It is 11.3mm thin and is only 2.7 pounds, available in a series of colors: silver, space gray, starlight, and midnight.
The new Air comes with the signature liquid retina display on a 13.6-inch display with a thinner bezel. It's 25% brighter with 500 nits and will come with over a billion colors for optimal streaming and working. With up to 18 hours of playback, users can get more done in their workday without worrying about charging.
The camera comes with 2x resolution on a 1080p camera. Additionally, a three mic array captures users' voices and playback comes from four integrated speakers on the keyboard. For artists, the image filters and performance will be 20% better, and it will be 38% faster for video editing.
The MacBook Air will come with a charging adapter with two USB-C ports. There's also a fast-charging adapter, which will charge the Macbook up to 50% in just 30 minutes. It will also come with up to 2TB of SSD Storage.
MacBook Air enthusiasts can get the MacBook Air starting next month, but it's available for pre-order now for $1,199 -- or $1,099 for those in education.
MacBook Pro with M2 Chip
Apple's second best-selling laptop also saw an upgrade to the M2 chip. With up to 20 hours of battery life, the liquid retina display will also see 500 nits of brightness for working and streaming across a 13-inch display.
Additionally, the M2 chip still comes with the 8-core CPU and 10-core GPU. It will also provide up to 2TB of SSD storage. The MacBook Pro will retail for $1,299 -- or $1,199 for those in education.
Stage Manager will gather all tabs to the left of the screen and help users organize their overlapping apps and tabs together. If users shift out, Stage Manager will keep apps and tabs grouped together to help users optimize their workday and multitasking.
Spotlight also saw a major overhaul. With a tap on the spacebar, Spotlight has been enhanced to help you find queries and information quickly. It can start a timer, find a shortcut, and leverage the full window for richer results. This update will come to iPad and will be available on the iOS.
Users can now unsend emails if there is a mistake in Mail. Additionally, the search engine has been enhanced, so it's now easier to find an email in your inbox.
Safari also saw updates. In addition to intelligent tracking, which helps track users' browsing history, users can also share tab groupings with friends and family. Whether it's building a vacation or planning an event, sharing tabbed groups can help users keep track of projects involving multiple team members.
The most important update announced was the Passkey. Unlike passwords, Apple's Passkey uses TouchID and FaceID to authenticate. Passkeys cannot be phished, shared, or leaked. They're synced across Apple devices and are instantly available on all devices. In Apple's announcement, it was clear that passwords will eventually be phased out, and the Passkey will be the future of Safari's security.
Apple is breaking further into the gaming world with its specialized MetalFX Scaling. The software takes geometric updates and works to enhance gaming. The first of the games using this major update, No Man's Sky, will be available later this year, and users can expect to see Resident Evil: Village soon after.
Collaboration, a new software feature, will allow you to collaborate on projects and documents. Users can FaceTime or message on projects within the app, making it easy to complete tasks.
In addition, if a project needs more time to be flushed out, Apple announced Freeform, the latest note-taking app that allows users to build ideas on a blank slate. Users can pinch, move around, sketch, write notes, and do anything else on the canvas -- with or without FaceTime. Freeform will be available later this year.
Similar to the MetalFX Scaling on the macOS, the iPadOS will also receive an update later this year called Metal, which will help gaming on the iPad, such as when users are playing Divinity: Original Sin.
The latest iPad Air and iPad Pro will add a virtual memory swap, which will allow users to add more storage.
Similar to the macOS, Stage Manager will also come to iPad–a first for Apple's tablet line.
With inputs from AFP.