As a Mac user, I get pretty excited to hear about new upgrades and features. Especially those that simplify my life or fix user experience issues that are downright annoying.
Yes, Android users, we know your lives are already amazing and you’ve already been using some of these features for some time. But those of us indoctrinated into the Apple camp can feel a weight lift off our shoulders knowing our precious iPhones will soon be a little easier to use. Here are some of the many features Apple rolled out at WWDC that will make using your devices and getting through your day that much easier.
Like the name implies, once you set up your family members you can automatically share photos, songs, reminders, calendars, apps, and more. All purchases can be tied to a single credit card and parents can receive notifications when their kids try to buy something on that card. Any parent who has suffered the common Tap Fish fate will be thankful for this feature. It saves you money through the notifications and sharing capabilities, and it will save you time trying to figure out where everyone in your house is supposed to be on a given night.
The new Health app should limit the need to check multiple apps to get your health stats and activity information. This feature aims to be a central location for any of the health data you want to track from different apps and fitness devices, without having to search for it. Track what’s most important to you, including blood pressure, respiratory rate, sleep, activity, medications and more.
Many of these features seem to focus on limiting the amount of back and forth between different apps or simplifying the way things are used. The Siri upgrades fall along those same lines. Want to know what song is playing? You’ll no longer have to go directly into separate apps to find or purchase songs. Siri will be able to identify songs using Shazam and purchase them for you in iTunes. Oh, and you won’t have to push and hold the home button to get started, just say “Hey, Siri...”
Find yourself constantly correcting Autocorrect? The new keyboard will supposedly learn which words and phrases you use most often and suggest them as you type, plus it’s suggestions are based on the person you’re contacting. For example, it might learn that you have the mouth of a sailor, but it won’t suggest salty language when texting your grandma.
Finally, you can respond to notifications without having to leave your app or unlock your phone. Texts will show up at the top of your screen and you don’t have to open your message to reply. It just got that much easier to never stop playing Candy Crush.
This is really a collection of features that will simplify your life by making it easier to transition between your Mac and mobile devices. Altogether, these features should make it seamless to go from one device to the other, whether that’s using Airdrop to transfer files, or starting an email on your desktop and finishing it on your phone while you walk out the door.
You’ll also be able to easily let your Mac steal Wi-Fi from your phone with Instant Hotspot.
“Borrowing” some handy features from such apps as SnapChat and WhatsApp, you’ll now be able to send audio and video messages in iMessage that self-destruct, share your location with friends for a set amount of time, and even mute annoying conversations.
Are there any other upgrades you're looking forward to? Share them in the comments below!