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WWDC18 Highlights: An All-Software Affair

WWDC18 Highlights: An All-Software Affair

The Apple Worldwide Developer Conference (WDDC) commenced in San Jose, California last week. While much of the conference was confidential and held away from the public eye, Apple did unveil the four new operating system upgrades coming out this year.

WWDC18 Announcements

iOS 12

Many changes are coming with this new software level, which is expected to be released this fall for iPhones and iPads.

  • Significant performance improvements when launching applications
  • Screen Time, currently a separate app, will be integrated into the operating system. It will show a weekly summary of application usage and let you set time limits for each one. In my opinion, this is in direct response to the open letter by Jana Partners and the California State Teachers’ Retirement System to address their perceived phone addiction with children and teenagers.
  • Shortcuts will appear in three places to allow faster access to apps:
    • Proactively presenting shortcuts to actions from apps based on your usage
    • In Siri, it will be triggered by your voice commands
    • Custom-built shortcuts which will be coming later
  • Group FaceTime which will allow thirty-two people to chat at the same time
  • ARKit 2 has two significant upgrades:
    • Measure app will use AR to quickly gauge the size of real-world objects
    • USDZ, which will be designed to deeply integrate AR throughout iOS and make AR objects available across the ecosystem of Apple products
  • Improved Photo app search and indexing. It will have a single tab for automated suggestions.

macOS Mojave

Scheduled to be an autumn release, this free upgrade will have new data privacy features, faster screenshot annotation and a Continuity Camera to shoot photos and videos directly into an open document.


Apple has partnered with Spectrum to give their subscribers access to channels and on-demand programming on the Apple TV which will also continue supporting the App Store.

WatchOS 5

This app will allow each Watch to act as a walkie-talkie, allowing for real-time voice messaging between them. In addition, the Podcast app works with this OS level. Lastly, no more need to say, “Hey Siri”, just ask it what you want.

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