WWDC 2019 Reflection

It’s been a week so I’m ready to write my report on WWDC 2019 – and my conclusion is that it was awesome. No gimmicky features, it was all under the hood improvements, bug fixes and optimisations particularly in the area of the use of Metal given the launch of the much promised Mac Pro. I was particularly pleased about iOS being split into iOS and iPadOS given that for too long the iPad had been treated like a jumbo sized iPhone/iPod Touch rather than being treated as a unique product requiring its own category and thus its own dedicated operating system that builds upon the foundations in iOS. For those who want to view the videos, they’re available via the WWDC 2019 schedule (link).

1) The new Mac Pro is exactly what the professionals wanted – a box with as much power crammed inside with maximum expandability. Is it a computer designed for people like me? No, and for the vast majority of people it is a massive overkill but for those who do need that power it is a great deal particularly when you look at the work done with developers to get them to take advantage of the afterburner card particularly when doing real time 8K video editing where as today it requires a number of steps to make it possible.

2) People gasping at the price of the monitor ignore the fact that a reference monitor can set you back $17,000 or more so the idea of being able to get a 6K monitor that is of reference quality but 1/3 to 1/5 the price of an actual reference monitor – it is an absolute steal. Is it an overkill for most people? Sure it is but nothing is stopping you from doing what you always do – buying a Mac Pro then jumping on Dell to order a 4K display off them.

3) All the feedback so far when it comes to iOS and macOS has been how fast and responsive it has been which is probably a byproduct of the work they’ve done with Metal along with moving more of the UI over to being drawn using Metal. Something that Microsoft has promised for years and failed to deliver (as seen by their continued use of GDI 7 years after introducing DirectWrite/Direct2D) it appears Apple is full steam ahead with a fully hardware accelerated GUI. MacRumors has a good video giving a nice top level overview of macOS 10.15:

4) iOS 13 is looking good with my favourite feature being dark mode which I’ve been holding out for. On my desktop and laptop I stay with the standard light theme but with reduced transparency but on the phone my preference is dark mode – which is particularly useful when using the phone in bed. Once again MacRumors does a quick overview of iOS 13:

5) Apple Sign In is one thing that has gotten me excited in the hope that we’ll see some of the big sites make use of it – it’ll be also interesting to see if a number of the big players, such as Google and Facebook, will offer Apple Sign In as an option for when one is setting up a new account. At the moment I keep seperate logins for each of the websites I use since I prefer it that Google and Facebook cannot traverse my the websites I use to mine more data than what is absolutely necessary for me to be able to use their services.

6) WatchOS 6.0 will be less dependent on other Apple devices which will be great for those who want to get into the ecosystem but might not have any other device. The stand alone native applications using SwiftUI will make for interesting discussion in regards to the adoption of the Swift language and whether we’ll see other platforms also provide Swift support such as Android and Windows.

7) tvOS 13 gains Xbox and Playstation controller support which will be interesting to see whether that will translate to more Apple TV 4K devices being sold now that it is a good fill in for those who want to do some casual gaming but don’t want to have to spend close to NZ$600 for a gaming console when most games could easily run on a Apple TV 4K device without too many problems (as long as they’re optimised for Metal).

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