What the Tech? Apple introduces new operating systems
Every year Apple holds its spring event, WWDC and I wonder what’s left to add to the operating system? Apple introduced its next operating systems, (iOS 13 for the phone, Watch OS6 and the new iPad OS) on Monday. So what’s new? One of the biggest announcements is about what's gone.
In Watch OS 6, Apple is finally giving users two apps that should have been included in the first place: calculator and Voice Recorder. Why calculator hasn’t been on our wrist since the Apple Watch was released is beyond me. Ditto with a voice recorder. Users have been downloading third-party apps for that task but will see the feature build into Watch OS6 when it’s released this fall.
Watch OS6 will have a feature specifically for women to track their cycles which can be displayed on the watch and will sync with Apple's Health app.
With the iPhone, Apple Maps is getting a much-needed redesign with features most of us are familiar with by using Google Maps. In the past year, Apple has deployed hundreds of vehicles to map the highways across the country. In the demonstration Monday, the interface looks very similar to Google Earth. You’ll be able to zoom in to street views, quickly move down the road visually and see more details about businesses and attractions you see along the way.
Also announced Monday is that app downloads and updates will be smaller so they will launch faster. Dark mode changes the bright white display to a dark mode allowing users to see the screen better in bright day.
A feature everyone has been asking for is finally coming to the iPhone and iPad this fall. Dark mode will transform the display from an all-white bright screen background to a dark background that will make things easier to see in daylight and keep from waking up the person next to you in bed at night.
Signing into a new app or service is simple when you use your Facebook profile or Google account, but that also gives those apps access to your personal information. Apple on Monday announced "Sign in with Apple". When you sign up for a new account, simply use your Apple account and Face ID. You can choose what information to share with the service and if you'd like to keep your email hidden, Apple will create a temporary secret iCloud email address which will be forwarded to the email address you use. When you no longer wish to use the app or service, Apple will destroy the secret email address and the third-party company will not have your information.
iOS 13 will also send you notifications if installed apps are tracking you.
iMessage will get new memoji options where users can choose makeup, hairstyles and other detailed looks. Your memoji will also be shareable when sending an iMessage to anyone. Apple will also have a pack of memoji stickers for each user.
Photo and video editing have more options and the Photos app will better organize the photos and videos you have on your phone. It will also take care of a frustrating part of organizing images. If you take photos of receipts or snaps of screenshots you know those are visible with all of the other photos and images you've taken and stored on your phone. Now the Photos app will hide those and duplicates so it's easier to see and find the photos you're looking for.
But one of the biggest announcements was Apple is killing off iTunes. The software platform that has organized our music for 18 years is going away later this year, replaced for Mac users with individual apps for music, TV and podcasts. When a Mac user connects their phone to a Mac desktop or laptop, nothing pops up on the screen which is what iTunes does so that the phone can be synced and playlists added. Those options will now appear in the Finder panel.
What about the millions of PC iTunes users? How do you manage your music library or sync the phone to the desktop if there is no iTunes? Apple did not mention PC users in the announcement Monday.
Apple did delete or scrub the Facebook fan page for iTunes and the software program did not seem to be working at all on Monday afternoon. iTunes would not load and any music purchases would go through Apple Music rather than the iTunes store. What will become of your iTunes playlists is unknown.