Major tech events are moving online due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. And for the first time, Apple’s largest yearly developer event, the Worldwide Developer Conference, was streamed entirely online. Despite the unconventional nature of WWDC 2020, Apple had some significant announcements. In a stark reminder of the pandemic, Apple’s CEO Tim Cook opened the event with his address in an empty auditorium Here are all the major announcements Apple made at WWDC 2020.
WWDC 2020: Apple says goodbye to Intel, hello to its own ARM chips
Apple’s plan to ditch Intel’s x86 chips to start rolling out its proprietary ARM-based processors has been floating in the tech world for years. Finally, at the WWDC 2020, Apple made it official.
During the event, Tim Cook announced that the new ARM-based “Apple Silicon” chips would boost Apple’s computers an efficiency boost and performance. Apple also said that with the in-house chips the company will no longer have to rely on Intel’s updates to push additional features and capabilities to Apple devices. Moreover, these Apple Silicon chips are supposedly low-energy consuming compared to the current Intel’s x86 chipsets, which help to boost battery life in the upcoming Macs.
Apple also confirmed that all the native Apple apps like Final Cut, Logic Pro, and more would offer support for the new ARM-based processors within the newly announced macOS Big Sur.
iOS 14: Packing more customization for iPhones
Apple also announced its latest mobile operating system at WWDC 2020. iOS 14 is a major update for iPhones and packs in various notable design changes and upgrades. iOS 14 now supports widgets that can be placed on the home screen. Apple is going to debut these widgets in different shapes and sizes and is going to change the look and feel of iOS. iOS 14 also comes with a widget gallery, which allows users to choose the widget they want to place on the home screen.
Apple is also introducing App Libraries, a much-anticipated feature that auto-organizes apps based on their category. For instance, iOS 14 is now going to group all the games in a folder and all the imaging applications in another folder.
iOS 14 packs in App Clicks, which is essentially like Android’s Instant Apps. App Clicks allows users to know what an app offers without having to download a full app. Picture-in-picture is yet another Android-inspired feature Apple is introducing in its upcoming iOS 14. This PiP mode will allow users to minimize, resize, and move a video on the home screen.
Several other updates being added in iOS 14 include more varied memojis, a dedicated map view for cyclists and EV users in Apple Maps, and more. Siri and calls will now no longer consume the whole screen and will instead consume a small overlay of the screen.
Last year, iPads received their first-ever native operating system in the form of iPadOS. This was a massive change for iPads in every possible way. iPadOS packs in a more powerful and productive application suite and features making it more Mac-like. iPadOS 14 has almost all the features iOS 14, while packing in several new features.
iPadOS 14 has new sidebars, pull-down menus, and more in native apps such as Photos, Notes, Files, and Music. These new app design changes allow users to quickly and efficiently perform more actions and functions on existing applications. iPadOS 14 comes with a new, improved, and efficient compact search option as that of a Spotlight search in the MacBooks.
The new Scribble feature in iPadOS 14 allows users to write by hand in any text field or area across the iPadOS, and it will be auto-converted to text. Several new features are being added in Notes, and Apple is stuffing iPadOS 14 with an augmented reality package for better interactivity.
macOS Big Sur
Apple also announced its next major desktop software update at the WWDC 2020. Dubbed the macOS Big Sur, the update brings major and noticeable design changes to macOS. macOS Big Sur brings macOS even closer to be in line with iOS and iPadOS. macOS Big Sur is also getting all the significant features of iOS 14 and iPadOS 14, such as widgets, improved memojis, and messaging improvements.
The design changes come with a redefined new dock, packing in more uniform and consistent app icons, a new and improvised control center, an all-new Safari with improved performance and security, and more customization options.
macOS Big Sur supposedly comes with improved power efficiency for longer battery life, increased performance, better privacy standards, powerful search, and more transparency with every App Store download. More information about the macOS Big Sur can be found here.
Other WWDC 2020 news
Apple also announced the new watchOS 7 that has, in a fitting reminder to the pandemic, a handwashing reminder feature along with a plethora of new watch faces. A new software update allows AirPods to switch devices seamlessly without having to re-pair them with the devices. All these updates are planned to be released by this fall. However, users can sign up for the beta program to try out iOS 14.