Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Here’s What Happened at Apple’s 2018 WWDC

Apple’s biggest event of the year took place yesterday. And if you weren’t able to make the trip to San Jose, didn’t have time to watch the nearly two and a half hour conference, or completely forgot about the event all together, don’t worry! We here at Lumavate were able to tune in to provide you with a recap of the most exciting announcements made by Apple at this year’s WWDC. So without wasting any time, let’s dive right into the coolest features of the iOS 12 update.

Tools for cutting down iPhone usage
Yes, you read that right, Apple wants to help you spend less time on your iPhone throughout the day. The topic of having users spending less time on their mobile devices was brought to Apple from two major shareholders (totaling approximately $2 billion in value of shares of Apple Inc.). They wrote an open letter to Apple asking the company to add more parental controls, and to look more in depth on the impact of excessive iPhone usage on mental health. The following built-in features available with iOS 12 were Apple’s response:

Do Not Disturb During Bedtime:
Have you ever woken up in the middle of the night and happened to check the time on your phone, only to find a screen full of notifications? This is a problem Apple hopes to eliminate with their new “do not disturb during bedtime” feature. This feature blocks all notifications during set sleep hours, to ensure a more peaceful night’s sleep. The user can then go through all of the notifications in the morning once they are ready to face the day.   

Screen Time:
This feature gives you weekly activity summary of your phone usage, giving you deep insight on how you spend time on not only your phone, but on each individual app as well. It also gives you additional information like how often you pick up your phone, and which apps send you the most notifications.

App Limits:
Now that Apple provides a weekly activity summary for your app usage, you may find yourself a little shocked to find out you spent twenty hours a week on Instagramwhich is why Apple also built in a new feature that enables you to set limits for yourself through App Limits. The feature will send you notifications when your time for the day is almost out, and once the limit is up it tells you “time to move on”. You do however have the option to ignore this notification and keep scrolling away as you please.

For all of the parents out there, this feature also has the ability to get reports of your kids phone usage as well. So you can set app limits for them because let’s be honest, what kid is going to limit their screen time themselves. It also gives the parent phone on your account the ability to limit access to movies/apps that you deem to be inappropriate for your kids.

Siri Is Getting An Upgrade
With nearly 10 billion requests processed per month, Siri is the largest voice command service out there. And after the iOS 12 update, Siri will be even more convenient to use. Apple has created a new feature called “Siri shortcuts” that allow you to program certain phrases in Siri to open up certain apps or do certain functions. For example, saying the phrase “I can’t find my keys” would open your key finder app. And now, Siri works with many third party apps, allowing for the possible number of shortcuts to be exponential.

Siri shortcuts wasn’t the only new feature added to the voice command service.  Siri will now be making suggestions to help improve your daily schedule. As Siri learns your routines, you can expect to receive suggested shortcuts for just what you need, at just the right time, on your lock screen or in the search section.

Greater Implementation of Augmented Reality (AR)
It’s a shame that parents are going to have the ability to limit the amount of time their kids spend on their phones…because iPhone games are about to get a lot cooler with the expanded functionality of ARKit. ARKit 2 makes it possible for developers to create more immersive augmented reality experiences that multiple users can experience at the same time. But this advancement does more than make games more fun to play. Take a look here to see not only a more in depth description of how Apple’s AR technology works, but also how AR is going to help improve productivity and immersive learning for iPhone users.

While we only mentioned a handful of the coolest features to come out of this year’s WWDC, don’t be fooled! Apple unveiled a lot more that we couldn’t fit into this short blog post. If you’re ready for a deep dive, click here for the official roundup straight from Apple! And while Apple gave us a lot of insight about the iOS 12 update, one thing they purposely left out was a release date. The internet is buzzing with guesses, most of them agreeing on the month of September. All we can do is wait patiently for Apple to confirm a release date.