November 23, 2022
  • November 23, 2022

With iOS 16, Apple could add a new polish to the iPhone

By on June 6, 2022 0

This story is part WWDC 2022CNET’s full coverage from and about Apple’s annual developer conference.

What is happening

Apple is expected to announce new software for its iPhones, iPads and Mac computers at its annual WWDC developer event starting Monday.

why is it important

The new software offers a chance for Apple to upgrade its devices without relying on manufacturing, which has been hit hard by the pandemic.

What this means for you

Software updates can extend the life of a device, giving users some flexibility in the face of economic uncertainty.

The most important part of Apple’s upcoming announcements on Monday might involve an iPhone already in your pocket.

At the company’s annual meeting Worldwide Developers Conference, or WWDC as it is called, Apple is is expected to announce a series of software updates for its iPhonesiPads and Mac computers, in addition, potentially, to a new performance-oriented Mac Pro computer and new TV-related features.

For iPhones, the new software should include a small “widget” lock screen apps, according to reports from Bloomberg and others. Apple is also expected to add features to improve multitasking and running apps side-by-side, especially on the iPad. These changes for Apple’s tablet would be welcomed by CNET reviewer Scott Stein, who criticized the device for its lack of PC-like features.

“The material seems about perfect,” Stein wrote in his last year’s iPad Pro review, which is now powered by the same M1 chips as the company’s MacBook laptops. “If Apple starts updating its iPadOS to add new features, more multitasking and monitor support, more Pro apps, and maybe even some kind of Mac compatibility mode using the M1 chip that it now shares with all these new Macs, it could be an amazing machine.”

An Apple spokeswoman declined to comment.

While Apple may showcase hardware at this year’s WWDC, the event is primarily focused on the company’s plans for the future. It’s Apple’s chance to tease ideas that will power key new features in its devices. In the past, the company has used WWDC to announce revamped looks for its iPhone software, new coding languages ​​for its devices and new initiatives like his switch to homemade crisps to power their Mac computers.

Apple has also expanded its subscription offerings over the past two years. These now include the $5 per month Apple TV Plus for movies and TV shows, the $5 per month Apple Arcade game service and the $10 per month Apple Fitness Plus. So far, people have responded well, Apple said, pointing to 825 million paid accounts. subscriptions on its platform at the end of March. This is a 17% increase over the previous year.

“The pandemic has further underscored how much we rely on this stuff,” said Carolina Milanesi, analyst at Creative Strategies.

An iOS 16 logo on a phone screen in a person's hand

Apple’s next big software update for iPhone is expected to be called iOS 16.

CNET

more more more

There’s a chance that Apple will announce new computers at WWDC this year, especially its already teased next performance desktop Mac Pro. But even if the company doesn’t produce a moment worth blowing away, Milanesi said, it will be watching for seemingly minor software changes that Apple will no doubt announce that over time will cause big changes to how its devices work. devices.

For example, the company started experimenting with widgets or small apps in 2014 with iOS 8. Back then, these widgets were limited and visible only in notification center. After six years of refinement, Apple adding widgets to the home screen with iOS 14.

These software updates, which Apple has made available for free for iPhones and iPads produced in the past five years or so, are unusual. Most other companies don’t keep adding features years after their devices are sold.

The new software also gives Apple the chance to introduce something new that isn’t reliant on manufacturing, struggling to keep up with demand, and not being hit hard by the costs of inflation.

“With software, Apple has a unique ability to refresh products in ways others don’t,” Milanesi said.

apple-wwdc-2018-1237

Apple has steadily increased the number of devices its products can interact with.

James Martin/CNET

Big Apple

Another set of changes Apple is increasingly making to its smartphones, tablets and computers is how they work with other devices the company doesn’t make. Over the years, Apple has, for example, added software technology that allows its Apple Watch to communicate with workout equipment. The company has also developed its near-field communication technology, primarily designed for Apple Pay wireless credit card paymentsto serve as keys to enter a car, and soon driver’s license to be used also at an airport.

“All of this translates to not only Apple playing better with its devices, but other devices as well,” said Bob O’Donnellanalyst at Technalysis research.

This year in particular, O’Donnell will be watching for any mention of industry-wide initiatives that Apple will support. Over the past two years, Apple has notably partnered with Fast Identity Online, or FIDO, to improve connection security through the web. This too joined the mattera consortium of device makers including Amazon, Samsung and Google, who hope to facilitate communication between smart home devices.

“This is where you go beyond the basic, ‘Here’s a new version of iOS with X, Y and Z features,'” O’Donnell added.

There’s always a chance that Apple will make a surprise announcement of its long-talked about AR glasses, maybe should go on sale next year. But analysts say that at a time when manufacturing is struggling and the broader economy is shaky, this is a good opportunity for Apple to focus on the software that helps its devices stand out.

“With an unparalleled installed base of one billion iPhones worldwide and 1.8 billion iOS devices for Cupertino, this remains Apple’s unique advantage over other tech stalwarts,” wrote the report. Wedbush analyst Daniel Ives in a recent message to investors, referring to Apple’s hometown of Cupertino, California.

Ives added that although a quarter of these phones have not been upgraded in more than three years, demand for Apple devices is still strong, in part because of these regular software updates. “The rigidity of the iPhone upgrade cycle is underestimated,” he said.