Later this month, Apple will hold its annual summit in San Francisco.
Since 1983, programmers have flocked to the Worldwide Developers Conference to participate in hands-on labs, learn more about Apple tools and technologies, and network with fellow developers.
Oh, and Apple frequently announces new products and services, too.
This year, WWDC will take place from June 13 to 17 in San Francisco.
Here’s what to expect:
Apple CEO Tim Cook will deliver a keynote speech to kick off the festivities.
At 10 a.m. PT on June 13, CEO Tim Cook will make big announcements from the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium.
Last year didn’t showcase any new hardware, but Apple did reveal a whole bunch of updates to its Apple Watch and Xcode developer suite and other pieces of software.
Like at most Apple events, Cook’s keynote should be streamed live if you’ve got a computer with Apple’s Safari browser.
Apple will detail what’s included in iOS 10, the next major version of software for iPhones and iPads.
- Alex Heath / Tech Insider
iOS 10 should come with a few major updates. For example:
Apple might revamp its App Store, potentially adding paid search. This is predictable given that Apple switched up App Store leadership in December.
The iOS remote should get some new features to keep up to date with the Apple TV 4, which came out in the fall.
iOS 10 might also include a new Home app that would allow users to control smart home devices. Apple Music is also expected to get a redesign, and for those who don’t use it, there might be a new way to hide built-in Apple apps they don’t use.
There’s also a chance that iOS 10 will also include Siri updates that would allow it to transcribe voicemails.
Apple’s voice assistant, Siri, might finally gain some new features that could make it a much more usable feature on iPhones, iPads, and Macs.
Expect Siri to be a big theme at this year’s WWDC and for Apple to spend a good deal of time discussing it.
The Information reported recently that Apple was poised to make a Siri API available at WWDC. This would mean that app developers could integrate their software into Siri as they can currently do for other voice assistants, like Amazon’s Alexa.
Apple could also be preparing a voice-assistant speaker like Amazon’s Echo, but that might simply be an update to the Apple TV, which would make Siri more immediately available.
Plus, Apple recently bought a company, VocalAI, which develops software that would allow Siri to respond to complex queries, like “Find a nearby Chinese restaurant with open parking and Wi-Fi that’s kid-friendly.“
Mac users should be excited about OS X 10.12, which may be getting a name change.
- Martin Hajek
Apple’s desktop operating system, Mac OS X, is pronounced “Oh Ess Ten.” Given that iOS is now at version No. 10, it’s time for the name to change to prevent confusion.
Several signs have pointed to Apple changing the “Mac OS X” moniker to “macOS.” Here are other possible changes at WWDC:
1. Siri might be coming to the Mac. A few screenshots of how it workshave recently leaked.
2. iTunes will get a revamp, with better Apple Music integration, according to Apple big shots Eddy Cue and Craig Federighi.
3. There will be bug fixes and performance optimization, of course. Apple usually does a performance-focused update every other year.
4. Unfortunately, it’s not likely to come with new hardware. Apple’s new MacBook Pros are expected in the fourth quarter, and Apple refreshed its ultra-thin MacBook earlier this year.
Last year, Apple spent a good deal of time on the Apple Watch at WWDC. Expect the same this year.
- REUTERS/Robert Galbraith
While Apple could use WWDC to unveil next-generation Apple Watch hardware, there haven’t been any leaks yet. So it’s more likely that Apple will use WWDC to update the software.
If Apple Watch 2 does come out, then most observers expect it to be significantly thinner with the same battery life, along with a cellular connection.
Apple also recently required developers to make all watchOS apps native apps, so Apple might spend some time discussing how an independent Apple Watch app – which doesn’t need a paired iPhone – might work.
Another one of Apple’s tentpole services, iCloud, could be in line for a major upgrade.
Since Apple’s tussle with the FBI over a dead terrorist’s iPhone, Apple has been revamping its security team.
That effort may come to fruition at WWDC, when Apple reveals new updates to iCloud and other online services.
At the very least, Apple might decide to raise the entry-level storage provided with a basic iCloud account, or offer more storage at the upper tiers for less money, although Apple most recently revamped its storage tiers last September.
Apple Pay may get an update that would allow it to go mainstream.
Several reports have suggested that Apple might integrate its Apple Pay service into websites through its mobile Safari browser.
When an Apple user would normally put in their credit card, websites could allow them to pay through Apple Pay, sort of the way PayPal currently works.
This could be exactly what Apple Pay needs to increase usage and become a common way to pay for things online – which could trickle down and make its in-person usage skyrocket as well.
Because partners would need to integrate the software into their websites, a developer’s announcement is likely, and there’s no better place to do it than at WWDC.
Apple’s newest platform, the Apple TV, may still be a “hobby” of sorts — Apple doesn’t break out its sales — but its interface and software certainly need some work.
Expect Apple to push some updates or improvements for developers. The Apple TV remote app for iPhones and iPads will also likely get some love, including Siri integration.
Not likely this time? Apple’s streaming-video service, which has been rumored for years. But there’s a chance that online-services SVP Eddy Cue and his team have put together enough content deals to launch it at WWDC.
Otherwise, expect several developer announcements that might encourage more people to make apps and games for the Apple TV.