This coming Monday, June 5, 2017, Apple‘s annual WWDC developers conference will open its doors in California. Usually focusing on software with a hardware announcement here and there, it’s a key event of the company’s year. As such, there’s a lot of speculation, about what it may reveal. So, today we’re going to take a look at what software you can expect.
Now it goes without saying that this conference is geared towards software and other technological updates for developers. So, you can expect to see lots of details aimed at helping them better leverage apps and be more innovative. Additionally, while the event is called the Worldwide Developers Conference, when it starts next Monday, consumers can also watch.
As for this year’s event, there’s already a sense of excitement surrounding a possible new iMessage app for Android. As well as the latest mobile OS update iOS 11, MacOS 10.13, WatchOS 4, and TVOS 11. So, with no further ado, here’s what you need to know about each of those software updates.
It’s almost a dead cert, which Apple will announce iOS 11 at WWDC, followed by its public release in September. It’s likely; it will at that time launch alongside the iPhone 8, and probably an iPhone 7S. As for what could be new in this latest firmware, we’re predicting a revolution is customization for the mobile OS. After all, this is something that iPad and iPhone users have been calling for for years; the question is how much longer can Apple afford to let that fall on deaf ears?
As for what other changes may appear, if the rumors we’ve seen are accurate, fans of the operating system could be in for a treat. With possible new embedded features such as FaceTime Group Calls, Dark Mode, Guest Mode, and an improved Apple Pay.
Other than that, we’re sure Apple announce updates to the HomeKit/Home and HealthKit/Health apps. You can read about the rumors here.
When it comes to MacOS updates, like with iOS 11, we’re pretty certain that Apple will unveil MacOS 10.13 at the event. However, there is some disagreement over the version number, with some expecting Apple to stray away from its naming convention. As for what we think, we expect things to be kept simple and MacOS 10.13 to be unveiled. That is no argument for the contrary has convinced us Apple will do differently.
What is this other version number? It’s MacOS 11; however, others are predicting a fruit based name, with no numbers included. Again, we think they’re all wrong, Apple tends to stick with what works, so 10.13 is almost certain.
As for what we can expect to, it’s clear that Apple much like Microsoft with it’s Windows platform is trying to make MacOS more cohesive. With that in mind, we expect to see more iOS 11 features shared across Apple’s other softwares. In 2016, this approach was seen in MacOS Sierra, with the auto-login process across different Apple devices. Plus there was the Apple Pay for the web, and Siri desktop was introduced.
WatchOS 3 launched last autumn and was designed to work the second generation Apple Watch which was revealed at WWDC 2016. With it came significant improvements over its predecessor such as new watch faces, new apps, a new dock, plus a slew of sharing, navigation, and performance enhancements. As for what we can expect this year, we, of course, expect additional improvements, with many such as a sleep tracker focussing on health.
Unfortunately, further details and rumors are rather thin on the ground right now. However, the ability to make your own watch faces could be a shock move by Apple. Additionally, shocking would be the capacity to alter the digital crowns functionality and sync the Apple Watch with multiple iOS 11 devices.
One last WatchOS 4 rumor, points towards Siri making an appearance, if true this could mean, the Watch could respond to voice commands.
As TVOS 11 is a piece of popular software, it’s likely to receive a mention at the WWDC. However, unlike iOS 11, MacOS 10.13, and WatchOS 4, there’s less chatter about it even though the event is nearby.
What do we expect to hear about it? There’s the chance that Apple could listen to consumers, and put in place 4K and Dolby Atmos support. Plus add in Safari for Apple TV, plus maybe Siri and a Home app too. As for rumors, we’ve seen so-called industry insiders predict that support for Vudu and Amazon Video could also be included this year.
Now while iMessage may be an iOS app, one of the very latest rumors predicts that Apple will introduce a standalone iMessage App for Android. Don’t be surprised, it could be a great move, why? Becuase any iOS or MacOS user will tell you, it’s one of the most useful apps Apple provides.
If this is true and iMessage is going to find its way to Android, it wouldn’t be the first time Apple has developed for its rival. Previously, we’ve seen Apple Music cross the divide, plus an app to help people switch from Android to iOS.
As for where this speculation comes from, that’s John Gruber of the Daring Fireball talk show. Apparently, he has close ties with Apple and claims the company has mockups of iMessage for Android ready. According to him, it has been testing the look and feel, as well as the functionality for some time.
On the Daring Fireball site, Gruber wrote,
“I’ve heard from little birdies that mockups of iMessage for Android have circulated within the company, with varying UI styles ranging from looking like the iOS Messages app to pure Material Design.”
So, if true, what would this mean? Possibly, it would mean that anyone with an Apple ID would be able to send iMessages and that includes, iPhone/iPad to Android. If this does happen, it could replace the standard SMS service, and be yet another Apple inspired communication revolution.
Will it appear at the WWDC, along with iOS 11, MacOS 10.13, WatchOS 4, and TVOS 11, we don’t know. But, what we can tell you is, the prospect of it doing so has a lot of people excited.