APPLE’S WWDC 2021 Announces Its Software Advancements


9 Jun, 2021


5 min read


Monday’s 90-minute WWDC event delivered more or less what we expected. Out of all the software updates, the surprise lies in the capability developers and end users enjoy.

Below are the most prominent software updates, and they all will be available to developers from Monday:

  • iOS 15 for iPhones
  • iPadOS 15 for iPad
  • watchOS 8 for Apple Watch
  • macOS Monterey for Macs
  • Big changes to Apple Maps
  • Privacy updates
  • iCloud+

Turn Photos into 3D Models

You can now turn 2D images into 3D models, just like the sneaker that Apple used to demo this feature. So, you can select a few photos on your iPhone and convert them into models that help with augmented reality applications.

MacOS Monterey Lets You Share Your Mouse and Keyboard with Your iPad

Monterey, the latest version of the MacOS is the namesake for California’s scenic beach town. With its new feature, Universal Control, you can use the same mouse and keyboard with a Mac or an iPad; your mouse cursor can move over and between the iPad, Mac laptop or your desktop. This allows you to use your iPad as a second screen, and you can also use it between Mac computers.

AirPlay: This feature allows you to use your iOS devices to beam your screen to a Mac computer.

Safari: Apple’s browser has also been redesigned and carries new features such as tab bookmarking and grouping.

HomePod Mini Lets You Request Shows on TV

The HomePod Mini is being further integrated with Apple TV and other devices. You’ll soon be able to give it instructions to play something on Apple TV.

Third-party accessories will also be allowed to tap into Siri. Apple demonstrated a thermostat answering a Siri request.

Apple Announces WatchOS 8

WatchOS 8, Apple Watch’s software, has a new watch face that can implement a background by using a photo taken in portrait mode. You can also write text with your fingers directly on the watch.

WatchOS 8 also has an updated Breathe app, which guides you with brief breathing exercise.

Mindfulness, a new app in the watch, displays Reflections, which include quotes or other inspirational meditation phrases.

The iPhone Can Detect How You’re Walking

With walking steadiness, you can ascertain your motion balance, stability, and coordination, and it can alert you if you’re at risk of falling. If a user is at increased risk of falling, Apple will send you a notification.

Apple’s health app has also been updated, and it can store medical records, and hold details of your health metrics. The iPhone will interface with health record companies, which will allow doctors to see your health app data. Users will also be able to share health data with friends or family. Moreover, users will be updated concerning their long-term health trends.

Apple Announces iCloud+

iCloud+ is more advanced and will have online privacy. Private Relay, which is its most significant feature, directs web traffic through two separate servers. This cloaks the user’s identity and the content they are browsing, just like a VPN does.

Hide My Email: This feature allows you to use a placeholder email address when you sign up for new features.

There are additional video features now available with the smart home cameras that use the iCloud for storage.

Apple Announces New Privacy Features

Apple is currently reinforcing its privacy protection by introducing tracker-blockers for its Mail app. You will be able to mask your location and IP< address. Your IP address will also remain concealed from Safari’s trackers.

App Tracker: There will also be an App Tracker Report section that will tell you how often apps use info over a 7-day period.

Siri will support speech recognition offline. This will be more private and will also speed up. Commands will be executed immediately unlike the way it currently sends commands to the cloud first.

Interesting Fact Revealed: Siri is used worldwide by 600 million devices monthly, which shows how important it is to people all over.

Apple Announces New iPad Software, iPadOS 15

The new iPad software is called iPadOS 15. With it, users can now rearrange iPad apps, and add widgets to the App Library feature and home screen.

The updated OS also has:

  • Quick Notes for you to take notes with an Apple Pencil (a stylus).
  • A new multitasking interface.
  • Translate – this app will now allow users’ speech to be translated in real time.
  • Swift Playgrounds (an app for learning how to code) will now help you build complete applications, which qualify for App Store submission.

Apple’s AirPods Aid Improved Hearing

Conversation Boost: This will be a new feature for the AirPods that will help you better understand who you’re speaking with when you’re in a busy environment. It will have ambient background noise level adjustment. Additionally, Siri will read out important notifications, as an option, as opposed to only calls and messages.

Updated Apple Maps

Apple Maps will now have much more city detail along with 3D models. You will now start seeing turning lanes as well as road conditions. In late 2021, these features will roll out for Italy, Australia, Spain, and Portugal.

Apple Announces iOS 15

iOS updates are typically announced when a new iPhone is being released, but this announcement is made for developers and early adopters so that they can begin testing it out.

iOS 15:

  • FaceTime improvements:
    • 3D audio
    • Portrait mode: allows you to blur backgrounds
    • Grid view: allows you to communicate with your team simultaneously.
  • Links for Scheduled Calls: Send links to users when you need to schedule individual FaceTime calls, such as Zoom links.
  • ShareTime: A new feature that allows you to share screens or music.
  • Cross Platform Calls: Windows and Android support FaceTime calls via browser for the first time.
  • iMessage redesign: Transforms messaged photos into galleries.
  • “Shared with you” saves links sent by your contacts in one location for reference later. This feature is compatible with Apple Podcasts, Apple TV, Apple Music, Safari, and Apple News.
  • Redesigned notifications: A feature that collects your notifications and arranges them by priority. You won’t miss notifications as they will appear on your locked screen.
    • Turn on “do not disturb” if you like, or switch to a new “focus” mode, and the status will be shared with other users, much like an away message. Hide apps with Focus mode if you don’t want them to distract you.
  • Live Text: This is an improvement with the camera, and this feature can automatically identify and scan text in images/photographs.
  • Spotlight: Apple’s machine learning can identify elements in photos. This includes spotting an associated location or taking note of a pet in your frame.
  • Memories: This feature leverages machine learning, placing photos in animations or galleries, and also adds music from Apple Music.
  • Wallet app: Apple is expanding its Wallet app’s functionality that will also encompass corporate badges and keys for access to hotels and houses with smart home features.
  • Apple will also support scanning U.S. IDs, such as drivers’ licenses, but this awaits approval from the TSA.
  • iPhone’s Safari browser: The browser is now compatible with the same extensions as the desktop version Safari uses. The tab interface has also been redesigned.

Apart from all the software updates, Apple revealed that the App Store has 600 million visitors every week. Since the App Store was launched, Apple has paid developers $230 billion, which is another interesting fact the company revealed.

The work that their iOS app developers do on the App Store is critical to the company, and now they will launch multiple product pages for testing and finalizing what works best in terms of balancing graphics with text. Moreover, the App Store will also market its apps through Events, a new feature to be implemented soon. The end goal is to gain more customers, and everything that Apple gives its customers is meant to be unique or at least slightly different from the competition.



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