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Apple announces new software and product updates

June 9, 2017
by Mark Ollig

The San Jose McEnery Convention Center in downtown San Jose, CA played host this week for Apple’s 18th World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC).

Tim Cook, Apple CEO, announced the Apple software developer community now has 16 million registered members from around the world.

Approximately 5,300 software developers from 75 countries attended this week’s WWDC.

The youngest software developer attending is 10 years old, and currently has five applications (apps) in the Apple App Store, while the oldest published her first software app at the age of 82.

This proves a person is never too young or too old to learn how to program and build useful software apps for today and tomorrow’s smart devices.

Using Apple’s Xcode 9 software, you can build apps for the iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple Watch, and Apple TV.

Learn to program apps for Apple devices using Xcode here: https://developer.apple.com/xcode.

Another Apple programming language tool called Swift is used for writing programs to support Apple operating systems such as: iOS, macOS, and watchOS.

Swift 3 and 4 code is said to be a good introduction to modern programming for students to learn.

Its website is: https://swift.org.

Cook introduced the new iPad Pro with its 10.5-inch screen, and Apple 64-bit A10X Fusion processor.

The iPad Pro is 20 percent larger than the standard iPad, and weighs 1 pound.

It supports an on-screen keyboard, as well as an external, full-size physical keyboard.

Apple also unveiled its new iOS 11 operating system for their iPhone and iPad devices.

Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of software engineering, said using iOS 11 allows your Messages app conversations to “sync up to the iCloud,” and appear even when switching between devices.

He said a message deleted on your iPhone will also be automatically deleted across your other Apple devices.

Apple iPad users will be able to drag-and-drop text, photos, and file content between apps with iOS 11 installed.

Taking screenshots and annotating them with text notes is another added feature.

Users will also be able to perform a search of their handwritten text within Apple’s Notes app.

A free iOS 11 upgrade to Apple user’s existing devices will be available this fall.

Machine learning is also part of the new Apple iOS.

Apple is adding new Application Program Interface protocols for developers to use for influencing machine learning between working apps.

To me, this is an indication Apple is pursuing the use of artificial intelligence in its future devices . . . we’ll see.

Phil Schiller, senior vice-president of worldwide marketing at Apple, talked about the Apple App Store.

As of this date, Apple users have downloaded 180 billion apps to their devices.

Apple said it has paid $70 billion to the software developers who created them.

There’s a new iPhone safety feature called Do Not Disturb. Once activated, it detects when you’re driving, and will automatically silence itself to incoming alerts and notifications. This feature allows you to concentrate on driving.

Apple’s Live Photos app will now support “looping.”

This feature allows users to create their own animated GIF (I pronounce it “Jiff” like the peanut butter) photos which have become popular on Twitter and Facebook.

It was stated Apple iOS device owners take 1 trillion photos a year – now that’s a lot of photos.

Videos taken with new Apple devices will use the H.265 video compression standard called High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC).

HEVC reportedly captures better quality videos, and uses less storage space.

As for Apple’s personal assistant, Siri, Federighi says they’re using deep-learning technology to give its voice “more personality.”

The new female and male Siri voices will sound more human in their inflection and cadence.

Siri will also be able to translate languages in real-time; just like the “Star Trek” universal translator.

Apple’s new iMac desktop computer will feature seventh-generation Intel Core i5 and i7 processors, more data storage, 50 percent faster SSD’s (solid-state drive), and up to 3TB (terabyte) of storage via the Fusion Drive.

Federighi confirmed the new macOS 10.13 operating system for the iMac is code-named High Sierra, which “is all about deep technology,” he said.

Apple announced its all-new iMac Pro computer equipped with an 8-, 10-, or 18-core Xeon processor, Turbo Boost processor speeds of up to 4.5GHz (gigahertz), capacity for a 42MB (megabyte) cache, and all-flash storage of up to 4TB.

It also is equipped with four Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) ports.

The iMac Pro supports a 27-inch Retina 5k display supporting a P3 color gamut generating over a billion colors; which amazes me, since the most colors I’ve seen all at once were the 64 inside the large Crayola crayon box (with sharpener) I had in grade school.

Apple also redesigned the warm-air flow architecture of the iMac Pro with dual-blowers, a considerably larger heatsink, and additional air venting.

The redesign manages the iMac Pro’s capacity of 500 watts of power; which is 67 percent more than the previous iMac model.

This new Apple iMac Pro computer will operate extremely fast; and, I suspect, be extremely expensive.

Look for the iMac Pro to be available just in time for the December holiday gift-giving season.

As always, you can follow me on Twitter at @bitsandbytes.


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