iOS 8, OS X Yosemite Topped Software-Focused WWDC 2014 Intros

By Michelle Maisto  |  Posted 2014-06-02 Print this article Print
Apple's WWDC

Overall, Yosemite's contribution is that it makes for a more seamless and integrated user experience. Those are words generally overused to the point of uselessness, but here they truly apply. Apple has removed steps, making it simpler, for example, to search for something, share it with a contact, annotate it and email it off, without needing to exit one app and click into another.

iOS 8

Cook called iOS 8 "a giant release," insisting that it's "two stories, not one."

"It has great user features, but also great developer features … so you can build apps that you couldn't before," he explained.

Many of these new features will already be known to Android—and even BlackBerry 10—users, but that doesn't make them any less welcome to the Apple community.

These new features include:

— The ability to respond to a notification—a meeting invite for a text message, for example—without leaving the screen you're on.

— QuickType supports predictive typing suggestions on the on-screen keyboard.

—In group messages, a user can decide to leave a thread or set a "do not disturb" notification when he's had enough of an engaged conversation keeping his phone buzzing. Users can also share their locations within messages, and a Tap to Talk feature lets a user share a recorded audio file, instead of typing, or even talk-to-typing.

— New enterprise manageability features include a device enrollment program that puts an end to opening a device, connecting it to a PC and then handing it over to an employee. Now, he or she can open a shrink-wrapped box and find their device already set up.

— Health and HealthKit were widely expected. Health offers a single place that multiple apps, such as Fitbit or blood-pressure monitors, can contribute to a user's health profile. While today this information is in silos, Health creates a complete picture. HealthKit, which includes integration from the Mayo Clinic, can enable real-time feedback and care. If a user takes a blood-pressure reading that's well above his personal parameter, for example, the app can immediately send that information to a doctor or hospital so that a doctor can reach back to the patient.

— FamilySharing lets up to six members of a family who are sharing a same credit card access the content that other members of the family have purchased.

— Apple is making every photo a user takes available on each of her devices, for a "consistent library." If you edit a photo on your iPhone, the edits will be in place when you access that photo from your iPad. Everything is stored in iCloud, enabling a user access to more photos from an iPhone than could ever be stored on an iPhone. The first 5GB are free. From there, Apple will charge $0.99 a month for 20GB of storage, $3.99 per month for 200GB of storage and additional tiers up to 1 terabyte.

— Siri will offer streaming support recognition, so you'll see your words as you speak them, instead of as she's processing them.


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