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All posts tagged Xcode

Apple WWDC 2017 Kicked Off Today…

Today Apple launched their annual conference and here are a few major announcements that should excite anyone. I’m usually the first person to be unimpressed by Apple but heck the sheer volume of news is overwhelming.

WWDC 2017 Hot News

ARkit: a series of APIs for Augmented Reality on IOS. Apple demonstrated marker-less spatial awareness on stage. The APIs will have Unity support.

Revamped App Store : this is touted as the biggest revamp of the Store in 9 years.

IOS 11: this is being launched in beta for Devs who sign up for it. The OS has a slew of new and improved features including a mode to detect when you are driving for safety.

WWDC 2017 - IOS 11 feature list

New iMacs built for VR: Apple returns to the glory days of iMacs with powerhouse machines that are designed with spec to support VR. These iMacs are not the candy colored, plastic bubble desktops from the late 90’s. The design is not a lot different from last Apple desktops but it’s what’s inside that counts.

Mac OS High Sierra with Metal for VR built-in: hardware is important but the OS has to provide for the performance demands of VR.

XCode 9 announces over-your-LAN run / install / test /debug to your IOS devices wirelessly.

WWDC 2017 - Xcode wireless development

The Warptest POV

  • ARKit – does their markerless demo spell the end for AR trackers? If so, are Apple going to let it die a natural death or will they decide to restrict IOS AR apps to their APIs?
  • App Store revampbesides the App Store currently being a colossal pain for app discovery, how will these changes impact App Ranking. If there is something new to learn here, then the quickest studies will get a leg up on app rankings.
  • IOS 11 – the list of features is extensive but can I yell “finally” over driving mode and screen recording? Even though this is unquestionably a Beta release, expect the usual fear, angst and loathing as fanboi’s fight overtaxed servers, download and then cry foul at Beta meaning buggy.
  • iMacs with VR support & Metal for VR on Mac OS High SierraThis apparently needs a high-end Graphics card connected to the iMac / MacBook by cable to Thunderbolt port. Conclusion: Kludgy design for Apple but this might be the only way they could have delivered in time for WWDC.

 

In a nutshell, these are just some of the highlights. If you are a Mac or iPhone owner or developer then you should be reading up on what’s coming. I’m not going to grant Apple that they have finally innovated under Tim Cook but WWDC 2017 is going to shake things up and that’s good for Apple and good stimulus for competition.

Update: with the announcement that Apple have added screen splitting, drag and drop and “welcome to the 21st century” a File Explorer app, IOS 11 gets one step closer to Windows.

That’s fine, homage is the greatest admission that your competition got it right.

Game On.

Another Apple Product Launch … Yawn

March 18th will see Apple Product Launch 2016. The Verge and others are predicting the iPhone5se and the iPad3.

This post will be the litmus test for if you are a real Apple fan. Hold onto your iHats.

So the annual Apple Product Launch event is on 18/03, so what? I can count on one hand innovations made over the last five years. The ugly battery case that slipped through when they (probably) locked Jony Ive in the store closet doesn’t count. Yes, the Apple watch is a thing of beauty, but where are the glory days of Apple innovation?

Apple Product Launch - ugly battery case

Apple = Gillette = Apple

So Apple will continue on their slippery slope of Gillette Mach X marketing, more blades or in this case bigger / smaller, thicker. There will no doubt be the usual integrations into the next version of iOS paying homage to various killer apps out there (cue cries of the death of said apps across various tech blogs) but you know what, I don’t care.

I’m totally, utterly unexcited. I have no high hopes from Apple. This is the point at which the Apple fans (note: lack of the term “fanboi”. I think it’s a bit derisive of the consumer who has a personal preference.) are getting really annoyed at this post.

To all of you feeling that way, hop in a time machine. I’m sure there were similar cautionary posts to Nokia and Blackberry on forums or early blogs. Of the Apple users I know about 50% dislike 3D touch on the iPhone, Developers are driven to tooth-gnashing rages at every Xcode update that breaks their deployment environments and then we have reports of software quality and security issues. Meanwhile Tim Cook spends more time trolling and trashing the competition than innovating.

Don’t get me wrong, other than that awful battery-case, Apple design remains a delight for the most. The Mac Book Air on my desk cons me every time I use it into subconsciously thinking it has a touch screen.

At Mobile World Congress today 3 companies are dazzling others, showing that features or design can be innovative:

CAT released their latest S60 Android field-rugged, waterproof phone with FLIR thermal imaging. No fad feature, this and the phone itself will be invaluable for builders, contractor and other professionals. Not just wannabe spies.

Apple Product Launch - CAT S60

LG launched their new G5 Android smartphone. The LG site shows a variety of LG branded modular add-ons ranging from custom, wireless earphones, camera grip, 360-degree camera and more. In addition, the phone (as seen below, image clipped from the LG site) has a unique battery changing method. Seeing clips of the battery being changed at MWC reminded me of something. Let me know what you see.

Apple Product Launch - LG G5

That’s right, this is day one at MWC, three weeks before the Apple Product Launch. What else are we going to see?

Meanwhile HP has caused half the professional tech blogs to ooh and ahh at their Elite x3 super-powered Windows Phone with their spin on Continuum support. Meanwhile the other half of the tech blogosphere is having meltdowns about how dare HP defy their reports that Windows Phone is dead, no less innovating.

The Warptest POV

I’m going to disappoint you. I want an innovative Apple. I want Tim Cook to get up at the Apple Product Launch and blow my socks off with new features and designs. Concepts that will push the competition to rethink their own ideas and raise the bar.

Stagnation does not benefit the consumer. Poor software quality and Developer tools undermine the industry.

For those of you who wonder, I work with iPhones, assorted Android phones and possess an HTC 8x, Lumia 820 and 950XL Windows Phone. I have a Lenovo Yoga and Mac Book Air on my desk. I use Ubuntu at least several times a day. I’m about as exposed to cross-platform / device / OS as it gets and I hope that Apple really does something different.

Perhaps we will get radical battery redesign, beautiful looking but drop-proof, waterproof phones. The real thing that puzzles me is the limited exploration by Apple of the cloud. As Amazon, Microsoft, Rackspace and others boldly build for the cloud, what are Apple doing? iCloud is consumer storage and productivity apps. Where is the innovation to cloud development akin to Microsoft or have they ceded this race to Azure?

So is this the canary in the coal-mine, the warning sign, the tolling bell for Apple or should we prepare to be wowed? What do you think the Apple Product Launch has in store for us?