Apple WWDC 2018 - What You Need To Know
On Monday, Apple debuted a lot of new features at WWDC (Worldwide Developers Conference) 2018 that will - and will not - affect the average everyday Apple consumer. Although this is another keynote for Apple, no new hardware was introduced this year, only software - which isn’t all bad. With a less than great year, Apple has high hopes to set a new tone in 2018. Here are some of the highlights and what you need to know.
If you’re like me, Siri can either be a pain in the butt or a useful tool depending on what you know Siri can do and how you use it. Now Apple has integrated ‘Shortcuts’ into Siri to help with repetitive tasks where you can assign your own action to help Siri work more efficiently. For example, if you constantly lose your keys and you use the Tile app to find them, you can assign the phrase “I lost my keys” to a Siri shortcut and Siri will open up the Tile app for you and start ringing the tile within the Siri platform. You can also combine multiple actions as well like adjusting your thermostat, playing a certain radio station, and texting your spouse to let them know you’re on your way home - all with just one Siri command. Although I don’t believe this puts Siri above other virtual assistants like Google Assistant or Alexa, this is definitely a step in the right direction.
Weekly Activity Summary
Apple continues with new operating systems across their devices with a new one for Mac called macOS Mojave. This new operating system introduces Dark Mode, which essentially turns Finder windows and the rest of the OS into a dark charcoal look rather than the existing bright white look. ‘Desktop Stacks’ is also a new feature that will help organize your desktop into stacks of documents by arranging them by kind, date, or tag - which can be helpful when your desktop is cluttered with things you don’t really need. Screenshots got an update in a good way by making them easily editable in a new quick application called Markup right after the shot is taken and screencapping videos will be available as well through the OS rather than going through a third party app like QuickTime to screen record. There are also a few apps that are coming to macOS that haven’t transferred from iOS including News, Stocks, Voice Memos, and Home which will allow you to adjust smart home gadgets like monitoring your video cameras straight from your dashboard.
The Apple Watch got a new operating system as well and with that gained some handy new features. Communication has been a bit tricky with the Apple Watch but now you’re able to use a new ‘Walkie Talkie’ feature to be able to talk back and forth with someone simply by raising your wrist. Siri shortcuts like we discussed within iOS 12 will also be available for Watch OS 5 which will also make it easy to start a workout, play music, or find you the fastest route home.
Apple TV has made a few large strides with a new operating system that first and foremost include a wide range of live sports and news channels, making it easier than ever to stream live programs. New audio technology called Dolby Atmos was also introduced as a crisp and improved surround sound to the Apple TV. Apple is also working with Charter Spectrum to bring an even wider range of live channels to the Apple TV, making it an all purpose media powerhouse.