Published on June 4th, 2014 | by Eddie Leblanc0
How Apple Locks In Users With Latest iOS, OS X Features
This week, Apple kicked off its Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) in San Francisco with the latest major updates to OS X (Yosemite), iOS, the App Store and the new programming language “Swift” for building mobile apps.
Although, the lack of any new flashy gadgets have disappointed many, the stock is currently up for this week.
While the WWDC is really about the developer community – now at about 9 million, a 50% increase from a year ago -, with the release of new software (operating systems, development kits or SDK, cloud service), it’s not uncommon for Apple in the past to also unveil new hardware like the iPhone 4, a new Macbook Air or the Mac Pro.
Well, not this year.
“Apple has moved away from being an inventor even more than usual. It watches other companies invent, then it makes products better. Today was a good example, with new health and home automation features that others have already had, but are better integrated,” told celebrity blogger, Robert Scoble, to a colleague.
Apple rolled out so many new APIs (application interfaces to its platform) and software enhancements at WWDC that it is difficult to summarize them all here, but in a nutshell, the increased integration between OS X and iOS shows how Apple is slowly but surely locking-in users into its own device ecosystem (iPhone, iPad, Macs, TV):
- Continuity: start using an iOS app then “hand it off” or migrate seamlessly to the same app on the Mac
- Initiate a call on the iPhone from a Mac
- Use the iPhone as a Wi-Fi hotspot, again seamlessly i.e. no setup required
“These experiences are just impossible to create even when you are in a 100% Android or Windows environment,” explains Jeff Boudier, the co-founder of Stupeflix, the publisher of the Replay video app.
Apple Opens Touch ID, Health and Home platforms to third-party developers
Apple announced iOS 8 which includes an array of new services and features, including:
- A new predictive-software keyboard
- Messages with additional features similar to WhatsApp, like the ability to send audio, video and support group messages
- Family Sharing (photos, calendars, iTunes/ App Store purchases)
- and Health app that aggregates personal health and fitness data via a single dashboard
Apple also gave third-party developers access to its fingerprint identity sensor (Touch ID), its new Health, Home and Cloud platforms. But still no access to SIRI. However, its enough to get Apple developers excited.
“It really opens up new frontier. We’re looking forward to see those enhancements in the hand of consumers this Fall,” adds Boudier. So do most Apple fans!