WWDC 2017: What Can We Expect?

Apple is back with its annual WWDC event to let developers and people around the world get a peek into what the company is building in the coming year.

The event will kickstart on June 5 and last till June 9. Apple is holding the coveted developer’s event in San Jose this time after 15 years. Also, the teaser this time hints at pushing the society forward through new ideas and valuing diverse perspectives. The lined up events confirm the same idea as there’s a new Women@WWDC get together introduced.

 

Just like every year, we can assume it to be a software-focused event with possibly one or two new product launches and upgrades to existing products. Along with it, there will be workshops, speaker sessions and demos for developers as usual.

Let’s see what the WWDC holds for us in 2017.

Software

Apple refreshes its software lineup every year by pushing new changes to keep the interfaces delightful and relevant. In this year’s WWDC, we can definitely see new versions of all the Operating Systems Apple has under its family – iOS, MacOS, watchOS and tvOS.

iOS usually gets an annual version update in WWDC and this year will be no exception. iOS 11 is rumoured to have a new updated interface. Apart from it, we can definitely expect many new features to arrive in this upcoming version. Apple may also update its native inbuilt apps. We saw major updates to iMessage and Photos last year which totally modified them to be better. We hope Apple does something better with Mail and Maps this year.

macOS 10.13 is set to launch in this WWDC as well. Expect Craig Federighi to announce some cool new features coming to the next version of macOS, whose name will supposedly begin with the letter M.

We will likely be witnessing a decent upgrade to Siri, which hopefully makes it more intelligent and provides it the ability to do more things. Siri has now got some serious competition and Apple is well aware of it. Everyone from Google to Amazon is heavily investing in AI & Machine Learning. Apple is at a natural disadvantage with its privacy pledge to not collect & store much data about its users. Being in India, we, of course, see the difference between Google’s ability to understand our accent vs Siri.

Hardware

Siri Smart Speaker

One of the biggest rumours doing the rounds from the past few months is the Siri Smart Speaker – a home assistant, Apple’s sophisticated answer to Amazon Echo and Google Home. While it’s basically a rumour, it makes complete sense for Apple to venture into this space as it is well known to build products that become a part of its ecosystem. It also has the support of its witty, intelligent assistant Siri. It will be exciting to see how Apple overcomes the challenges faced by Echo and Home to create a super useful home assistant.

If you are one of those who read Mossberg’s final column, you would know about the future we may well be heading towards. A Siri speaker would be the least Apple can do to take us towards the disappearing computer.

Upgrades to existing products

Apart from this new launch, a few other products will probably be upgraded.

 

Macbooks: We might get to see upgrades to the existing lineup of Macbooks. The Air was last updated 2 years back and its outdated specs require a successor. Although the Pro version was recently upgraded, it would be great to have support for Intel’s newly launched processors code-named Kaby Lake.

iPad: As for the iPad, it was recently reported that Apple might be working on a 10.5 inch iPad which would have thinner bezels and a larger screen in the same size as that of the 9.7 inch iPad.

The much-needed upgrade to Mac Pro is due for a long time. Even though Apple has promised it, we might get to see it next year, maybe in WWDC 2018. We are certainly not expecting new iPhones, those are reserved for a special event later this year. Even the Apple Watch will likely be upgraded in the same event.

 

This is all WWDC will be possibly about, but Apple never loses the ability to surprise and the coming week will unfold what it has for us in the future.

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