Tim Cook at WWDC 2020
Apple’s developer conference started on Monday afternoon. It’s announcing a bunch of new software, including the latest version of iOS, the iPhone operating system.
Apple CEO Tim Cook started the event in a pre-recorded video from Apple’s campus by addressing racism and the Covid-19 pandemic. He mentioned Apple’s $100 million program to fight racial injustice and noted that the company is holding the conference during a global public health event.
“We’re committed to being a force for change,” Cook said.
Here’s what has happened so far:
The latest version of the iPhone operating system includes a big change to the iOS home screen.
In iOS 14, users can pin widgets with updating information on the home screen, Apple said on Monday, including calendar and maps mini-programs. Previously, users could only include apps on an iPhone’s home screen. Users can drag a widget onto the iPhone home screen, where it will persist. Users can download new widgets from a widget gallery. Apple has also introduced a widget that uses artificial intelligence to predict which data the user wants to see.
Apple also introduced a new feature called “App Library” that automatically organizes apps. Users can also delete entire pages of apps in one tap as well.
Apple also added several new features to the Messages app, including mentions, new Memoji features including an avatar wearing a face mask, and a new interface for group texts that enables threads to be pinned to the top of the app.
iOS 14 also introduces a picture-in-picture feature that enables a video to float on top of other apps while watching video.
The update also includes a redesign of the Siri interface. Siri has 20 times more facts than a few years ago, Apple said.
Guides from partners, including Zagat, will be included inside Apple’s Maps app, which adds content about restaurants or attractions into the app. Apple will also add cycling maps in certain cities including New York and San Francisco.
Apple has also introduced a new translation app, called Translate, that enables real-time translation between two different languages.
An iPhone with the Translate app can be put in between two people speaking different languages and can translate what they are saying in real time.
This story is developing. Please check back for updates.