For those not in the know, WWDC is the “Worldwide Developer Conference,” which takes place once a year in California. Here, developers for Apple systems can debut their new apps and software — but the biggest event by far is Apple’s annual keynote and announcement. This year, we can expect a host of announcements for Apple Watch, macOS, and the highly anticipated update for phones and iPads: iOS 13.
With so much news set to drop, Apple fans will likely be scouring the internet for every tidbit of information they can get their hands on. If you’re curious about what Apple has in store for your devices, don’t worry. I’ve compiled everything you can expect Apple to announce for WWDC 2019. Between health support, second-screen, and dark mode, these are updates you won’t want to miss.
Update 06/01: Based on beta versions of new software, as well as talk from developers in-the-know, we have more information on several upcoming features for the new versions of iOS and macOS. Expect deeper integration between platforms, including universal apps that span from mobile to desktop. You can also look forward to the culling and reorganization of an essential app that Apple users across the world love to hate.
What’s Apple announcing for iPhone and iPad at WWDC19?
Apple’s biggest update, as always, comes to us in the form of a new edition of iOS. iOS 13, the latest mobile operating system from Cupertino, is set to continue last year’s trend of bug fixes and functional updates rather than a brand new look and feel. This comes as a relief to fans of iOS 12, who praised the current version for its focused approach over risk-taking seen in previous editions.
Essential apps are getting some tweaks and adjustments in order to streamline the operating system. Find My iPhone and Find My Friends, for example, will now be integrated into a single app for locating devices on a map — a move that’s sure to make folks who like their home screen clean very happy.
Some other highlights set to make their debut in iOS 13 are updates to the core Maps, Reminders, and Messaging apps. For Maps, users will have the ability to set frequent locations and location groups that the program can reference for directions and distance.
Reminders will be completely revamped into a colorful and functional “to-do” app that competes with the kind found on the App Store — complete with daily tasks, a new grid layout, and the ability to flag specific items for later.
Messaging, however, gets the biggest face-lift of all with custom avatars and stickers that users can set using pictures, animoji, or memoji — the popular animated emoji faces.
Another much-hyped upgrade is coming to the realm of health on iOS, with new features like hearing-health and cycling tracking now standard to the platform.
Hearing health not only lets you monitor how loudly you’re listening to music but also includes support for hearing aids — a major step in the right direction as seniors continue to represent a major bloc in Apple’s ecosystem.
For women using iOS, cycle tracking is sure to make an impact, with fertility and hormonal monitoring that give users more freedom and flexibility in their life planning.
Displays, more than anything this season, are getting the biggest update of all. One of the most highly requested features for iOS is finally here: dark mode. This feature optimizes your device for night time use, making menus black with easy-to-read white lettering.
Not only do dark menus look sleek, but they’re also kinder to the health of your eyes, and can help avoid strain after hours of use. On top of this, Apple is also enabling users with iPads to connect their tablets to their computers as a second monitor, which only enhances the utility of iOS devices alongside Macs.
Where it could have been argued before that you didn’t need both an iPad and a Mac, the new update is sure to prove the haters wrong and give power-users functions they crave.
What’s Apple announcing for Mac at WWDC19?
Mac is seeing less in the way of major updates this year, but a new feature coming this fall is sure to turn some heads: iPad apps on iOS.
Apple is unifying code between iOS and macOS to allow some cross-compatibility between its two largest app ecosystems. This is great news for developers, who now can design a single application instead of multiple versions for Apple’s many products. According to reports, Apple is hoping to bring iPhone app compatibility to Mac in the coming year or so.
The most drastic update, however, appears to be coming for iTunes. Apple users across the world find the program indispensable, but loathe its massive system bulk, slow running speed, and clunky user interface. In beta versions of upcoming macOS updates, users have found that iTunes is officially no more — replaced instead by a trio of new programs called Music, TV, and Podcasts. Much like what you see on iOS, these programs look to be leaner, faster, and more streamlined for the media they host.
What’s Apple announcing for Apple Watch at WWDC19?
Apple Watch has already taken the world by storm — defying the expectations of many analysts who predicted the wearable would be nothing more than a passing fad. To commemorate its smallest gadget’s uncanny success, Apple is giving the Watch the same treatment it gave its phone a few years after launch: an App Store of its very own.
The Watch App Store will allow developers to create standalone apps that increase performance and speed for a variety of useful functions. Users will be able to browse the store directly on their watch, add apps, and delete them without ever needing to touch their phone as they do now.
In addition to new downloads, the built-in apps on the Apple Watch have continued to grow, with Voice Memos and Reminders coming to the watch in new ways. Specialized medication reminders and cycle tracking are now included as watch face “complications,” which connects with Apple’s newfound focus in health and wellness.
When is WWDC19?
With all the new goodness coming down the line from Apple, users would be well advised to keep an eye on their iPhone or iPad’s settings app — which shows the latest iOS updates as they become available. For those who want to tune in to Apple’s live keynote for themselves, WWDC19 kicks off on June 3rd. We’ll see you in San Jose.