Posts tagged: WWDC 2014

OS X Yosemite

Welcome to the new OS X Yosemite. Available for free in the fall, the updated Mac operating system has some quality new features that look to make the Mac and Apple device user experience more seamlessly integrated and an overall better user experience. The new design may take a while to grow on some people, and there isn’t a lot of really new stuff, but snazzy additions like email markup and multi platform sharing, or ‘continuity’, is enough to make us want to ride the OS X Yosemite train.


Here’s what we can look forward to.




 Notification Center


The new ‘Today’ feature in Notification Center gives you a concise and summarized look at everything you need to know — upcoming events, reminders, stocks, weather, and more. You will also have the opportunity to add widgets from the Mac App Store to customize whatever else you might like to see.





The updated user interface design is aiming for bolder and cleaner, with more white and brighter, poppier colors. Rounded icons and button shapes, a new font, streamlined toolbars and window translucency make up the new look.


If you’re not a fan of all things bright, you will also have the option to use your Mac in ‘dark mode’ .


The close, minimize, and maximize window buttons are now close, minimize, and full screen, eliminating the extra full-screen control which we know a lot of people will be happy about.


Even though some people are complaining about it looking cartoonish, we especially like the extra smiley finder icon – we think he might be our new best friend. Craig Federighi himself was most impressed with the Trash can icon. And it’s pretty cool, for a trash can.





A nice new feature of Mail is  Mail Drop, which lets you send super large attachments through the cloud without worrying about your service provider’s limitations or the recipients’ email service.



One of our favorite features of all from Yosemite, mainly because we like doodling so much, (but also because it looks insanely useful)  is the new Markup feature. With this you can quickly annotate an attachment you receive and send it back — without leaving Mail. You can fill out forms, add shapes or text, and add your signature by signing with your finger or capturing it with the camera on your Mac.  You also have the option to zoom. And everyone loves a good zoom, are we right?



Cross Platform interactivity or Continuity


If you have an iPhone with iOS 8, Apple has introduced a way to seamlessly integrate it with your Mac – something they call Continuity. With it you will be able to make and receive phone calls, iMessages, and SMS messages on both your Mac and your iDevices. We’re excited, because we’re lazy.  And just like in iOS 8, messages in Yosemite will now include audio and video capabilities. We’re excited, because we love Karaoke.



Another sweet deal is that with Yosemite (and iOS 8)  you will be able to use your iPhone as a personal hotspot for your Mac and connect to the internet that way if WiFi is unavailable. Something that wasn’t shown at WWDC but is expected to be an active feature of Yosemite when it’s released is a screen sharing feature in iMessages so whomever you’re messaging can see exactly what you see.



As a part of Continuity, the new iCloud Drive feature will give you the ability to to store any type of file in iCloud and access it on any device.  A Dropbox-like service that syncs documents across Macs, iOS devices AND Windows ( WHAT!),  it offers an iCloud storage folder directly within Finder.



Apple has introduced new pricing for iCloud with the debut of iCloud Drive. The first 5GB of iCloud storage is free, while 20GB costs $0.99 per month and 200GB costs $3.99 per month. Tiers of up to 1TB are also available.



The best part of Continuity is Handoff.   A super nifty new feature, it will let you seamlessly switch from your Mac to your iOS device and vice versa no matter what you’re doing. For instance if you’re on a web page, writing an email or finishing a document on your Mac, you will be able to pick up your iOS device and continue without missing a beat. It’s almost like they don’t want us to stop using their products or something…






With a new search window and scrollable previews of your results, Spotlight now finds information from Wikipedia, Bing, Maps, movies, sports, and heaps of other sources. It pops up in the center of your desktop and will give you more a stack more options for what you want to do with the results, such as read a document,make an appointment, save a phone number,  send an email, or make a phone call.





Safari will have new ways to view what you do. For favorites, click the smart search field and a grid drops down, revealing the icons of your favorite websites. Click an icon and off you go. For your Tabs (on all your devices, because CONTINUITY) you can click ‘Tab View’ to see all your tabs in a nicely organized view.



When you search for something, Safari provides Spotlight Suggestions from sources like Wikipedia, Bing, Maps, news, and iTunes, along with suggestions from your search engine.



Yosemite will bring advanced JavaScript engine optimizations to Safari. Sweet right? Yeah, that just means it’ll be faster. It’ll also be more energy efficient, so, apparently we can do things like watch Netflix for up to 2 hours longer. Because not watching enough Netflix was purportedly a big problem for a lot of people. (We’re being sarcastic. Back away from the Netflix. YOU CAN CONTROL IT. YOU DON’T HAVE TO WATCH THE WHOLE SEASON OF ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK AT ONCE!)



There are also more privacy options  in Safari.  A little late to the party, but you will be able to open one Safari window in Private Browsing mode — which doesn’t save your browsing history — while keeping others in regular browsing mode. AND you can also now search the web using DuckDuckGo, a search engine that doesn’t track you. Kudos to the naming team on that one, by the way.



So there you have it folks, OS X Yosemite. The future of your Mac and integration with all your Apple devices, and changing the way we communicate and all that good and weird stuff.



OS X Yosemite is available today to registered developers and will be launched to the public this fall as a free upgrade for all users. There will also be an public open beta program launched later this summer.



You can sign up for the OS X Yosemite beta program here:



If you guys have any questions about OS X Yosemite, please let us know and we’ll endeavor to find answers for you!












ioS 8!

Welcome to the new iOS 8! As well as a bright new user interface update, iOS 8 will bring to our phones a new level of sharing – between family members, between app developers and between iDevices and Macs.


We’re pretty excited about the new software functionality this operating system is promising, and below you will find a comprehensive outline of everything ( that we know of so far) that iOS 8 will bring to your lives with it’s release in the Fall.



New Spotlight


The search function in iOS is called Spotlight, and with iOS 8 it brings a much broader ability to search, both on your iDevice and on the internet. For example -type in a term and you can see a part of a Wikipedia article, including a picture and a short summary. Tap it, and Spotlight takes you to the full article.



Spotlight will also show you search results like trending topics, popular websites, nearby restaurants with phone number and hours of business that can connect you to maps,  search results within the iTunes Store or the App store, and search results for movie times.



It seems like there is a slight crossover with Siri’s functionality in the new Spotlight, but making things easier all round can only be good!





Messaging gets a lovely new overhaul with iOS 8!  Starting off impressively is the new ability to add video and audio messages. Simply touch and hold the new microphone button to record your message, and swipe to send. on the other end, to hear a message, you can now hold your iPhone to your ear and listen or just tap the play button next to the message.



All messages, text, video and audio, will now have the option to be deleted automatically, or within a time period ranging from a year to forever.



With iOS 8 you will be able to create larger and better controlled group conversation threads where people can be added and can leave at their leisure. Group conversations can be named for an event or experience, the attachments can be seen all in one place rather than opening them one at a time, and you can put the conversation on ‘Do Not Disturb’ so you can read the thread when you want without being, well, disturbed.



A new option with messaging which I’m sure teenagers are just going to love is the new location services within the messaging app. It is of course just that – an option – to show others that your are messaging where you are ( and if you really are studying in the library with Rachel, why do you have your location option switched off? HUH? uh oh).



Other than that, we can see this addition promising to be very useful. You can show your location with individuals or everyone for an hour, until the end of the day, or indefinitely.



Finally, a small but lovely touch is the new ability to send multiple photos and videos at once through messaging. YAY Let’s bombard EVERYONE WITH SO MANY CAT PHOTOS AND PHOTOS OF THOSE SWEET MOUNTAINS WE SAW ON OUR VACATION!





The new Health app gives you an easy-to-read dashboard of all of your health and fitness data (Think heart rate, calories burned, blood sugar, cholesterol etc) . This data can be collected ( if you choose) from 3rd party sources and apps such as Nike, Fitbit, FitnessPal, medical devices etc and shown here consolidated for you and others ( again, if you choose) to access. This can mean that your Doctor or fitness specialist can be notified when something is wrong, or if you’ve hit a certain metric or met a goal.


Apple has been working  with the Mayo Clinic working towards what they say will  ‘bridge the gap between patients, doctors, and health-tracking devices…with ‘the potential to revolutionize how the health industry works.’



With health in iOS 8 you can create an emergency card  with all of your vital medical information ( think blood type, allergies, medications) that’s accessible from your Lock screen.



Despite all of the focus on Apple’s health related initiative before WWDC, the company spent very little time going over the Health app. It is likely we’ll see an additional focus on Health in the coming months as it is likely to also integrate with Apple’s much-rumored wearable device, the iWatch.





Siri gets several updates with the ability to be invoked hands-free with the phrase “Hey, Siri” along with Shazam song recognition, 22 new dictation languages, as well as streaming voice recognition to show you guys search results as you speak. In order to preserve battery life, Apple requires that the device be plugged into power for “Hey Siri” to work.



Notification Interaction


When a notification comes up on your phone, from Facebook, Skype, Messages,  Calendar – whatever- you will now be able to respond those notifications without leaving the app you’re already in. Hoo- RAH! Such a small thing, that will make it so incredibly less frustrating than before!





Now from your inbox, you can swipe to mark an email as read or flag it for follow-up. Jump between a draft email and an email in your inbox super easily, and when you get a reservation, flight confirmation or phone number in an email, a notification appears. Just tap to add an event to your calendar or a phone number to your contacts.



Safari in iPad


Just like above, you can now see all your tabs on your iPad, just like on your iPhone. You can see all your open web pages with tabs from the same site grouped together. There’s also a new Sidebar that slides out to reveal your bookmarks, Reading List, and Shared Links.



Home Button


From any screen, press the Home button twice to see the multitasking interface which now comes complete with a few friendly faces. These are the people you’ve recently talked to and if you swipe to the right — your favorite contacts as well. Just tap one to call, text, or start a FaceTime call.


New keyboards


QuickType is the new predictive text and something we’re sure will change the way we communicate. We can also see it being comedian’s late night fodder for sure, but until then – it’s a clever and useful feature of iOS 8.  As you use the new keyboard over time, it will learn the way you communicate, get to know your favorite phrases, and suggest options for the logical next word that adapts to the current context with the caveat that those words change, depending on who you are talking to. The iOS 8 predictive text engine is optimized for 14 countries.


Apple is also going to allow users to install third-party keyboards for the first time, which means keyboards like Swype can be used natively on the operating system.



Family Sharing


Family sharing is pretty cool. Up to six people in your family can share all kinds of things across their devices. This includes: calendar information and purchases from iTunes, iBooks, and the App Store, (with the ability to pay for family purchases with the same credit card and approve kids’ spending right from a parent’s device.) You will be able to automatically set up a family photo stream where you can share photos, videos, and comments. And everything stays up to date on everyone’s devices.


Family Sharing can automatically share your location with your family members and show you where they are. You can hide your location too… because that’s not suspicious or anything.



iCloud Drive 


You can safely store all your presentations, spreadsheets, PDFs, images, and any other kind of document in iCloud, access them and work on them live from your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, or PC.



Using iCloud Drive means you’ll always have access to the latest version of all your documents from any device.


What’s really cool is that now your apps will be able to share files, which means you can access and work on the same file across multiple apps. The example Apple gave is this: you can create a drawing in a sketching app, then open it in a paint app to color it in. Or create a chart in one app and place it in a slideshow using a presentation app. No more making copies or importing documents from one app to another. It’s a whole new level of collaboration between apps.



Cross platform interaction


Um, what? You can do what now? Yass. Now you can make and receive phone calls on all of your devices and your Mac as long as your iPhone running iOS 8 is on the same Wi-Fi network. Incoming calls show the caller’s name, number, and profile picture. Just click or swipe the notification to answer, ignore, or respond with a quick message. It all works with your existing iPhone number, so there’s nothing to set up.




PERSONAL HOTSPOT WHAT. If you’re out of Wi-Fi range but your iPhone is close by, your iPad or Mac will now be able to connect to your phone’s new personal hotspot to surf the interwebs and all that cool internet type stuff.




This is a new programming language that Apple has introduced, which for developers, is pretty dope. For the general population, it’s also pretty dope, but on a different level. What it comes down to for you guys – apps for iOS 8 will be better. Which we like.




Extras We’ve learnt about since the WWDC keynote !



iPads will gain the ability to take Panoramic photos like the iPhone, while the Camera will gain an instant burst mode, a timer mode, and separate controls for focus and exposure. iBooks will support an auto night mode and the ability to organize books by series, while notifications will include travel time.



A mysterious Tips app, which was first depicted in an early screenshot of iOS 8, is also mentioned, though it is unclear what this app will do. It is possible Tips will provide iOS users with information on lesser known iOS features, serving as a tutorial app for those who want to learn the ins and outs of their devices.



So there you go, guys, iOS 8. Overall we’re really quite impressed, and very much looking forward to it’s release in the Fall. Apple developers have access to iOS 8 and will be working on creating awesome apps for the update so we can use the operating system precisely how Apple planned. It will, of course, be free.



The only downfall of iOS 8 – Those of you who have an iPhone 4, it doesn’t appear as if iOS 8 will be compatible. . Soooo… you guys…. have you heard about the new iPhone 6 that’s coming?



Stay tuned for our comprehensive outline of OS X Yosemite – and let us know if you have any questions about iOS 8 and we’ll try and answer them as best we can!!






WWDC 2014

The WWDC keynote began at 10:00am Pacific time at the Moscone Center in San Francisco with an introduction by Tim Cook, however it soon became The Craig Federighi show, with the Senior Vice President of Software Engineering introducing both iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite.


The big theme of the keynote was sharing, from new Family sharing, to the new iCloud Drive, to cross platform interaction, or, ‘continuity’, the ability to use Apple functionality  across iOS Devices and Mac, from phone calls, to messaging, all the way to your presentations, spreadsheets, PDFs and images.


Both system updates have a pretty new makeover, with new buttons, icons, transparency and fonts. The acquisition of Beats by Dre wasn’t only briefly alluded to, when Craig Federighi showed how to make a phonecall from his Mac, and called The good Doctor himself. The introduction to the new health app was nice, albeit brief, leading many to believe that a more in-depth look at the app will be coming, as it will have more integration with the rumored iWatch than with the iPhone or iPad.


As many had guessed, no new products were announced, but the amount of subtle and apparent improvements to both system updates were enough – for now.


Stay tuned for a comprehensive run down of all the awesome new functionailty and UI of iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite!





WWDC Lands Tomorrow!

Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference starts tomorrow at San Francisco’s Moscone center! The proceedings will kick off tomorrow morning at 10:00 A.M. PST with a keynote speech most likely given by Tim Cook.


In that speech, we’re preparing to hear about iOS 8, OSX 10.10 ( or El Cap as it is believed to be called), as well as a range of other updates and possibly new software products such as the much rumored ‘Healthbook’.


We as consumers won’t see any of the new updates or products for a while, as the conference is used as a chance to have developers, well, do their developing job in time for the update or product’s release to the public months afterward.


There is always a chance that Apple will pull magical rabbits out of their beautifully packaged hats tomorrow, the same as there is always a chance that people will be disappointed if there is only incremental updates to the operating systems.


We’re hoping for the first of those options, and we actually think we might get it this year. We also may or may not still believe in Santa Claus, so there’s that.


But! We’re excited for tomorrow! You can watch the whole keynote on your Apple TV or catch the live stream via Apple. It requires Safari 4 or later on OS X v10.6 or later; Safari on iOS 4.2 or later.


OR you can keep an eye out for our comprehensive coverage of the keynote, with everything you need to know about what was revealed straight from sunny San Francisco!



You will be able to watch WWDC streamed live!



The WWDC 2014 banners are going up! WWDC IS COMING! And the good news? Apple is offering a live video stream of next Monday’s keynote address!  The keynote begins at 10:00 AM Pacific Time.


Those wanting to watch the live stream will need Safari on Mac/iOS, QuickTime 7 on Windowsor have access to Apple Tv, where it will also be available.


Not to worry if you can’t watch it live ( cos of like, work and other normal Monday morning things) – we’ll be watching and will keep you updated on all the news coming straight from San Francisco’s Moscone Center!




Image courtesy of Apple & The hollywoodnews.