Keynote Super-Quick™ Wrap-Up
Apple had their annual WWDC Keynote yesterday and announced a slew of upcoming products. Here's my super-quick take on everything in the pipeline:
MacOS High Sierra: We think Sierra is Apple's best OS since Snow Leopard (10.6), and we expect High Sierra to be even better. The new file system (APFS) is the one thing that is going to make the biggest difference in how easily you can work with your Mac. Everything we currently know about how to properly manage files (including backups) is going to change, and we won't really know how until it's released.
WatchOS 4: Apple is finally starting to get Siri front and center where she belongs. More on Siri below.
iMacs and MacBook Pros: If you thought the new Macs would be Apple's "fastest Macs ever," then you have seen every keynote since Apple started having keynotes. Three words: Faster. Lighter. Slightly more expensive. OK, five words. Eight.
iMac Pro: Available by the end of the year, Apple's new pro workstation looks like a beast, and is a welcome replacement for the aging Mac Pro. If you're a power user (this includes professional photographers), this machine is for you. Not for the faint of pocketbook, however.
VR Support for Mac: Apple always seems to be behind the curve, and then when they finally round the bend they're moving like a bat out of hell and leave everyone else in the dust. VR (Virtual Reality) isn't just going to be for gamers, I expect Apple's support for developers to allow some amazing technology in the next few years. Imagine being able to aim your iPhone at the ruins of Pompeii and being able to see exactly what they looked like before the city was destroyed, in real-time, as you pan your phone around. Yes, it's going to happen.
Airplay 2: Apple needed this for the new HomePod (below).
Siri: If you're not using Siri at this point, you're really missing out. Everything that people used to say computers would be able to do for us is starting to happen, and Siri is the key component. Apple has been building out "machine learning," which is what most people would think of as artificial intelligence. It means Siri is about to get a lot smarter. Apple is the only company that respects your privacy, and is doing all of these things on your devices without sharing anything with Apple (or, we imagine, the NSA).
ApplePay: Available in 50% of retailers by the end of the year. The new ability to make payments directly to other people using Messages is going to be great, and we trust that Apple has found ways to keep it safe and secure.
HomePod: Apple's new music speaker is an primarily an interface to Siri. In keeping with Apple's modus operandi, it will seem fairly superfluous at first, and then within a couple years you'll wonder how you lived without it.
All in all, I think it was a strong keynote. Nothing earth-shattering (we shouldn't really expect a paradigm-shifting world-changing iPhone every few years), but strong moves forward in all of the areas where they need it to stay competitive.