What Was Announced at Apple WWDC 2021

UTC by Bhushan Akolkar · 5 min read
What Was Announced at Apple WWDC 2021
Photo: Apple

Apple has introduced a slew of pathbreaking features across iOS, iPadOS, macOS, watchOS. Besides, it has presented enhanced privacy options, new Apple Maps 3D Data, and the iCloud+ feature for power users.

On Monday, June 7, tech giant Apple Inc (NASDAQ: AAPL) kicked off its World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC) for 2021. In its two-hour keynote address, the company unveiled a series of updates for its major products. Right from iOS 15, to watchOS 8, and macOS Monterey, Apple had a slew of announcements.

iPhone’s Newest Version iOS 15 Unveiled at WWDC 2021

Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president for software unveiled the latest iPhone operating system iOS 15. Although the software release for users during the fall time, developers and adopters can get early access by the summer.

  • The iOS 15 comes with several FaceTime improvements like portrait mode, 3D audio, and blur backgrounds. Just like Zoom links, Apple will allow users to schedule FaceTime calls. Besides, screen sharing or music sharing will becomes easier for the new software feature called ShareTime.
  • Apple also decided to offer FaceTime support across platforms like Windows and Android over a browser.
  • iMessage comes with a new feature that turns messaged photos into galleries.
  • Also, a feature called “shared with you” will save links that people sent you. This becomes easy for users to check them later all at once. This is available across the suite of Apple features like Apple TV, Apple Music, Safari, Apple Podcasts, and Apple News.
  • Redesigned notifications include a feature that can collect users’ notifications into a custom summary. Besides, notifications from users will also continue to appear on the lockscreen.
  • iOS 15 also brings the new “focus’ mode to hide the apps and prevent them from distracting you.
  • It also brings a ton of interesting new camera improvements. For e.g. a new feature called Live Text to identify the text in a photograph or a scan.
  • A feature of iOS 15 called Memories will use machine learning that will combine photos into relevant galleries. It will also combine animations or add music from Apple Music.
  • Apple is further expanding its Wallet App functionality by including corporate badges and keys to check-in to hotels and houses with smart homes functionality.

iPad OS15 to Do More with Your Gadget

At WWDC 2021, Apple has introduced a new iPad dedicated software called iPad OS15. Let’s take a look at some of the interesting features it brings.

  • iPad OS15 introduces a new way of rearranging apps, putting widgets on the home screen and the App Library feature.
  • Apple also brings a new multitasking interface thereby making it easier to put two apps side-by-side on the iPad screen.
  • iPad OS15 features an updated Apple Notes app that can better interface with other apps. Another feature called QuickNotes allows users to jot notes using the latest Apple Pencil.
  • iPad also gets a new version of the Translate App. This will allow users to speak and have the discussions translated in real-time on-screen.
  • Swift Playgrounds, Apple’s self-learning how to code app can now build full applications that can be submitted to the Apple Store.

WatchOS 8 – the Latest Apple Watch Version

The Apple Watch software gets its newest version called the watch OS8. It comes with a new watch face feature that can use a photo taken in portrait mode as a background.

Apple watchOS8 brings a new feature that lets users write text with their fingers and send the message directly using via the watch. Besides, the watchOS 8 also comes with an updated Breath App to guide users through a brief breathing exercise. The latest Apple Watch software has a new app dubbed Mindfulness. This will feature meditation-adjacent phrases called “Reflections.”

The New Apple macOS Monterey

Apple’s latest version of MacOS has been named after California’s central coast scenic beach town. It comes with an interesting new feature that will quickly allow switching across a Mac or an iPad using the same mouse and keyboard.

The mouse cursor can easily move back and forth between a Mac desktop/laptop and the iPad. This turns the iPad functionality into a second screen. this feature dubbed as Universal Control also works between different Mac computers.

By using the feature called AirPlay, iOS devices can also beam their screen to a Mac computer. With the new macOS Monterey, Apple has also added a bunch of new shortcuts. This is basically an automation app for power users. The Apple Safari browser also gets a newly redesigned feature for tab bookmarking and tab grouping.

Apple Maps, Privacy Features and iCloud+ Presented at WWDC 2021

The newly updated Apple Maps software comes with 3D Data feature. This feature highlights the road conditions along with turning lanes. Apple said that the company is expanding its Apple Maps usage to other countries like Spain, Portugal, Italy, and Australia by the end of 2021.

Apple further enhances privacy protection with new features like tracker-blockers in its Mail App. This will help users hide their IP addresses, locations, as well as prevent the senders from seeing anytime the user opens an email. Besides, it is also hiding IP addresses from trackers in the Safari browser.

Apple introduces a new App Tracker reports section in its settings. This will allow users to see how often and what information apps have used over the last seven days. Another big news is that Apple Siri will start supporting offline speech recognition. This will not only make it more private but also faster as Siri doesn’t have to send the command every time to the Apple cloud.

Apple has now introduced a new feature called iCloud+ that brings along additional features for online privacy. Apple said that this feature will be included in the current iCloud subscription charges. One of the most interesting features is the Private Relay. This routes the web traffic via two separate servers. This will use to mask details like who is using the internet and things they’re browsing like a VPN.

iCloud+ also comes with a feature dubbed Hide My Email. This allows users to have a placeholder email in place for signing up for new features. Besides, Apple will have additional video features for smart home cameras in order to store footage on iCloud.

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