Businesses need to know

Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) kicks off on Monday, June 3, at 10 a.m. PT in San Jose, with a keynote presentation from Apple executives likely announcing a number of new software and hardware updates.

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In years past, Apple has typically announced significant feature updates and new versions of its operating systems to developers at WWDC, including iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS, leaving device announcements like new iPhones for its fall event. This year is expected to see much of the same, with implications for business users in the Apple ecosystem.

Here are some of the announcements businesses can expect at WWDC 2019:

  1. iOS 13

The next version of Apple’s mobile operating system, iOS 13, will very likely be announced at WWDC. Bloomberg recently outlined many of the expected feature upgrades users can expect, including the following:

Speed upgrades and bug reductions
Tweaks to the interface for a cleaner look and easier multitasking
A Dark Mode for night viewing
A revamped Health app that better outlines daily activity
Using your iPad as a second Mac screen, with the ability to draw with the Apple Pencil and get Mac notifications
Updates to the Reminders app that break tasks down into four sections: Tasks to be done today, all tasks, scheduled tasks, and flagged tasks
iMessage upgrade that allows users to set a profile picture and display name, and choose who sees it, similar to WhatsApp.
Maps app updates that make it easier to set frequent locations, and create groups of such locations
Mail app updates to allow users to mute individual threads, block incoming email from certain contacts, and easier folder management.

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Apple is already working on iOS 14 for 2020, which is expected to support 5G wireless network speeds, Bloomberg reported.

  1. macOS 10.15

The largest announcement in the macOS realm is likely to be the project reportedly codenamed Marzipan, which aims to make it easier for app developers to create apps that run on both iOS and macOS devices. This means we can likely expect to see more iOS features like Siri Shortcuts, Screen Time, and iMessage screen effects coming to macOS.

  1. watchOS 6

Apple is expected to announce a number of upgrades with watchOS 6, according to Bloomberg, including adding the App Store onto the watch interface so users can download apps directly on the device. It will also add the Voice Memos app, Animoji and Memoji stickers, the Apple Books app for listening to audiobooks, and the Calculator app.

Apple is also expected to add more watch face “Complications” that show information including the status of audiobooks, external noise and rain data, and the battery life of hearing aids, Bloomberg reported. Several new watch faces are also expected to be announced.

  1. New devices

While Apple typically saves device announcements for its fall event, some analysts predict that the company will unveil the long-awaited Mac Pro upgrade. Apple’s flagship desktop computer has not been significantly updated since 2013, and executives had previously said that a new version would come sometime in 2019. An updated Mac Pro is rumored to have a modular design, and to be announced alongside a 6K monitor, CNET reported.

Given Apple’s lack of attention to the device, ZDNet’s David Gewirtz outlines six ways the new Mac Pro could go terribly wrong, including incompatibility and lock-in, and lack of user maintainability.

Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo also predicted earlier this year that Apple would introduce two new iPad Pros and a new MacBook Pro in 2019.

However, all the rumors about the potential new devices have not been confirmed.

For more on how to watch the WWDC keynote, check out Apple WWDC 2019 keynote: How to watch, start time, livestream on CNET.

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