The Highlights of Apple WWDC 2014

Tech parties can really only start when Apple walks into the room — with a massive conference intention. Taking place over four consecutive days from 2 June 2014, Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference 2014 was held in San Francisco to address its reign in light of the cultural shift over the past six years. It anticipated one thousand Apple engineers and five thousand developers to gather together, write the code, and change the world. In this list, we’ve sifted out the top highlights of the conference to keep you clued in.

Photo Credits: Apple

Photo Credits: Apple

If it doesn’t challenge, it doesn’t change. 

We are not sure which grapevine Apple finally tuned in to, but the updated features prove that they are back in the game. Unveiling that iOS 8 will be available during last quarter of the year, the spotlight shines on the iOS Messaging application (for texts). It will now allow you to hold responsive group chats, easily exchange vocal and video materials with a swipe, arrange for self-destructing content, share location details, and see all the media files involved in a conversation thread at once. While its features does mirror some of the competing chat apps, a good native option makes the situation win all around.

It will also come with a bunch of interactive tweaks, which includes harmonic marriage between Shazam and Siri; a new Health App to exercise fitter users; possible customisation on the Control Centre; Active Notifications for simultaneous responses within apps; Photo App’s seamless merge with iCloud Photo Library for convenience’s sake; and the QuickType Keyboard, a predictive typing program. In short, this update is a creative take on the traditional quest for intuitiveness.

Photo Credits: Mashable

Photo Credits: Mashable

Sharing (information) is always caring.

The iCloud feature is a storage mystery, and it will be coming back bigger and better. iCloud Drive will be able to share files between your Mac, your iOS device; and with a smile, Windows. If you want to keep the spirit going, Family Sharing will now allow up to six family members to share common iTunes content across devices.

Following the same-day launch of OS X Yosemite, the declarative desktop operating system that will bring together your iPhone and Mac. You will now be able to take calls either ways (or even both ways if you use the Mac as a speaker phone); send, manage or edit files across the two gadgets with the updated version of AirDrop; and oh, your Mac will now be able to detect when your iPhone is near enough for some digital tethering. 

DDIY: Extensibility extends to keyboards and widgets.

The name that will stir excitement from developers is currently iOS 8’s Extensibility, a feature that allows apps to share some aspects of their abilities with another, the development of widgets for iOS that will be included in the device’s Notification Centre, and completely individualised keyboards to work within apps. Offering more than 4,000 new APIs and third-party app access to the top version of WebKit, it is akin to a birthday invitation.

Photo Credits: Macrumors

Photo Credits: Macrumors

Other highlights include access to the insides of TouchID, PhotoKit, Camera APIs, HealthKit, HomeKit, and CloudKit — which quickly means that you have eyes everywhere, from the fingerprint sensors to data logs of heath profiles. We know that Apple is slowly, but surely, opening up their doors, so this is time to roll up those sleeves, and start the do-it-yourself mentality on the right foot. 

Soar new heights with TestFlight and Swift.

That is hardly the end of the developers’ goodies. The App Store will be completely revamped to allow a smoother process: new categories, trending searches, and better app previews. There will be a single bundle price for developers to spread across multiple apps; videos can be uploaded onto descriptions; and TestFlight, a public beta platform for users to try out the apps (and bugs) before any official releases. Finally, Apple will be introducing Swift, a homegrown programming language that doesn’t come with “baggage”.

Photo Credits: Adam Lashinsky

Photo Credits: Adam Lashinsky

Opening up with the new era.

If we deduced the volume of audience cheer into two simple reasons, the first would lie in Apple’s decision to improve their features while facing the customers. The new systems will make it easy to switch between Apple and Android brands, placing the importance of experience above platform exclusivity, and proving that the big guy is progressing to let others into the playground. With that, the second reason is the openness that was surprised and promised with this new era of change. If this is just the beginning, then we are staying on for the rest of the Apple journey.