Techies everywhere are having a field today, and I have to admit that I sat in the office today posted to the live blog of WWDC. Can you blame me? The newest features and gadgets are exciting and are enough to convert even the most die-hard PC fan.
The conference lasted about two hours, and non-stop information was given to us about everything Apple has developed. Here are a few favorite items announced today:
MacBook Air and Mac Book Pro
MacBook Air and MacBook Pro will now feature faster graphics, more memory, and USB 3.0 ports. The USB 3.0 ports allow for faster transfer speed, more bandwidth, and are just all around awesome. The next best part is that both USB ports will function as USB 2.0 and 3.0 ports.
MacBook Pro is also getting a makeover. The newest generation will be like the lovechild of the MacBook Air and the original MacBook Pro. You get the best of both worlds. It is thinner than the regular Pro, and has an SD card slot, Quad-Core processors, 7 hour battery life, Retina Display, and HDMI! The starting price for the MacBook Pro with Retina Display is $2199. Yes, the price is a bit disheartening, but with all the new additions and features, it may very well be worth every penny.
OS X Mountain Lion
Mountain Lion will be the updated version of Mac OS X Lion, the current operating system for Macintosh computers. It will have over 200 new features, and each one is just as neat as the next. These features include things like diction, which will work system wide, a sharing feature that will make it easier to send updates to 3rd-party apps like Twitter, Facebook, and so forth.
One of the other major changes will be to Safari, which has definitely been lacking up to this point. I stopped using Safari almost immediately and just stuck to Google Chrome. Hopefully the new Safari will give Chrome a run for its money. You will now be able to use the pinch gesture to view all your tabs on one page, which promises to be a useful feature.
One final feature that should have gamers excited is the new game center, which will support turn-based and head-to-head gaming. The feature will work for Mac-to-Mac, and Mac-to-iOS games.
The new iPhone has so many new features, I don’t even know where to begin. There is a more improved Siri, which allow her to launch apps, and will now also be available on iPad. They also have gotten more serious about Facebook integration. You can now access Facebook once and can post from websites and apps more efficiently. You can also use Siri to update Facebook. I am not sure how I feel about this particular addition, and I can see a few ways that it could lead to potential privacy issues in the near future.
Apple has also created their own version of Maps, which will surely put Google Maps to the test. With features like a 3D button, info cards for more than 100 million businesses, traffic services to tell you where there is an accident, turn-by-turn navigation, and re-routing you when you are stuck in traffic, Google needs to watch out.
There are a lot of enhancements to the phone apps that are already in place too. When you receive a phone call now, you will have the option to reply with a message, or remind you later, in addition to answering or rejecting the call. There will also be a Do Not Disturb function that will not interrupt you, but still allow you to receive phone calls and messages. You can tweak the settings that best fit your needs. One last feature that is different is guided access, which will let you get rid of certain buttons, or put the phone in a single app function mode. This will allow anyone with special needs to use the phone more effectively.