Are you excited yet? I am, WWDC is now just one week away. In this blog post, I want to talk you through all the rumours about what we expect to see at the keynote.
Apple's brand new headquarters is nearing completion and staff have started to move in, so expect some talk of Apple Park at the WWDC keynote. There will likely be a brief history of the project as well as pictures and video from inside and out. Apple Park recently showed up as 3D models, walkways, more in Apple Maps. Including the Steve Jobs Theater, where future Apple keynotes (but maybe not WWDC) will be held. More than 12,000 workers will make the move to Apple Park, the move is expected to take around six months.
Software is one of those things that we just don't know for sure what will be in it, as it's made on Apple's campus and not in a factory in China, so leaks are hard to come by. However, we do know we will get new version of iOS, macOS, tvOS, watchOS and maybe even siriOS. We can speculate about what will be in these new versions, reading through news reports, listening to other Apple commentators and my own wants and dream for iOS. This is my wish list, system-wide dark mode to make reading the device at night easier (iOS, macOS), Being able to change which functions are available in Control Centre (iOS, macOS). Home App Improvements, a long shot, but the ability to use non-HomeKit devices with the home App by providing an API for developers like Belkin (iOS). Apple Pay Improvements including person-to-person Appa Pay, as mentioned below and the ability to use more reward cards with Apple Pay, such as Nectar and Tesco Clubcard (iOS). Close all open apps, one button to close all open Apps, rather than having to swipe them all away individually (iOS, tvOS). App Picture in Picture on iPhone (iOS). Touch ID to open apps and/or guest mode (iOS). Portrait mode (depth of field/pull focus) in video mode, this may take new hardware so we may have to wait for the new iPhones, but having the ability to do portrait mode in videos would be a massive help to video makers (iOS). Lossless Video recording/encoding, so we can keep ever bit of video and photo data, with zero compression if we wish to (iOS). Put the camera settings.. in the camera app, you can change the frame rate of a video and its resolution but only in the Settings App, putting that ability directly into the Camara App would help video makes (iOS). Siri Improvements for all platforms and the rumoured Siri speaker.
Amazon Video for tvOS
The Apple TV has a range of really good video options including Netflix, BBC iPlayer and TVPlayer among so many others. However, Amazon Video has been missing, a report from Recode, citing sources familiar with the plans says that the Amazon Video App may be shown at the WWDC keynote and released this summer. This would bring Apple TV back into contention because you can get Amazon Video on so many platforms, Smart TVs and set-top boxes. Here in the UK, there are still many services missing services missing from Apple TV (although most can AirPlay from their iOS App) including All4, ITV Hub and UKTV Play.
TV Subscription Service
There has been talk for a long time about a possible TV subscription service coming from Apple. They have dipped their toe in the water by offering 'Carpool Karaoke' and 'Planet of the Apps' as part of your Apple Music subscription.
Apple could create its own Netflix-style service. However, it has so much money in the bank it could just buy Netflix or HBO to start building its TV service. There could also buy Disney, which owns a 30% share of Hulu. As we know Steve Jobs was Disney's biggest shareholder following his sale of Pixar to Disney or they could go it alone and make their own content deals.
This is certainly an interesting space that Apple wants to move into, we will have to see if the TV service is ready to announce at WWDC.
Person to Person Apple Pay
This is a feature I have been wanting since the day Apple Pay was announced, the ability to send money using Apple Pay to other Apple users. Similar to services such as Square Cash, Paypal.me, Monzo.me and many other services.
Recode reports that Apple has also held talks with Visa about the possibility of creating virtual Apple prepaid debit cards. This would allow users to spend the money they get from the new peer-to-peer payments service instantly without having to wait for the money to clear in their bank account.
Rumours have been circling for a while now about a possible Siri speaker being released or at least shown at WWDC, the device will be similar to that of Amazons Alexa and Google Home.
The speaker will likely run some version of iOS, maybe speakerOS or siriOS, and will likely be able to send content to your phone or iPad for a more rich experience (similar to what the Echo and Fire tablets already do).
As an Alexa user, I can see the use for a smart speaker. However, Alexa is very open, it can control smart home devices from any manufacturer that makes a skill for it and there's even way of using HomeKit devices with it using bridge software. Apples on that other hand will only support HomeKit devices. Siri is also not up to scratch against Alexa or Google Assistant, the Siri speaker needs to be teamed with a major update to Siri itself in iOS 11.
Siri is the most assessable for any AI assistant, It’s available on iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, Macs, Apple Watch and now its own (portable?) speaker. We will find out if these rumours are true at WWDC, next Monday.
New iPad Pro
We were expecting to see new iPads in March or April. However, reports now are saying we are likely to see them at WWDC. This could include a new 10.5” iPad Pro with narrow bezels and maybe a refresh of the iPad Mini. However, some reports are saying it might be discontinued.
As we know Apple is working on a "completely rethought" Mac Pro with Apple-branded pro displays. However, that won't be until next year. As for MacBooks, we may get spec bumps at WWDC to both the standard MacBook and the MacBook Pro, but I wouldn't expect anything more than that. What I would like to see it a new Mac Mini, that hasn't been updated since 2014. As for the MacBook Air, I expect it to be discounted, because the MacBook is basically the new MacBook Air.
I wouldn't expect any new iPods. they may keep the current range available. However, I also would not be surprised if they are discontinued soon, although some still buy them, the need for single-purpose devices in our lives is over, our phones do music and so much more, in my view, the iPod is becoming irrelevant.
As you can tell it’s going to be a jam-packed show, make sure you download my WWDC bingo card and together we’ll find out what's in store as WWDC is only one week away, you’ll be able to watch it live at https://www.apple.com/apple-events/june-2017/ on your Mac, iPhone, iPad or the Apple TV ‘Apple Events’ App. I will also be running a LIVE blog with all the announcements as they happen and a full roundup next Monday from 5:45 pm right here on the giffgaff blog, I hope you’ll join me for that.
Thanks for reading,
Carl produces websites, apps and videos. View his latest work at carlrydings.com
You must be a registered user to add a comment here. If you've already registered, please log in. If you haven't registered yet, please register and log in.