Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference is also taking place this week, from the tenth until the fourteenth – as if you didn’t have enough tech and gaming news to pay attention to! Here’s some highlights of what we learned on day one.
New Operating System – Mac OS X 10.9 Mavericks
Gone are the big cat names; the next new naming convention from Apple will be California-themed names. Mavericks is named after a famous surfing competition held near Half Moon Bay. Apple says that the new OS will give users improved battery life and power management, new apps, tabs in Finder, the ability to add tags to file names so they’re more searchable, and much more. Developers have access now, and everyone else can get their hands on it this fall.
New MacBook Airs are available as of today, and they continue to be the laptop I’m most afraid of snapping in half.
- $999 for an 11-inch display with a 128GB Flash drive (9 hours battery life)
- $1,199 for an 11-inch display with a 256GB Flash drive (9 hours battery life)
- $1,099 for a 13-inch model with a 128GB Flash drive (12 hours battery life)
- $1,299 for a 13-inch model with a 256GB Flash drive (12 hours battery life)
The new line offers all-day battery life, Intel’s fourth-generation Core processor (Haswell), and 802.11ac Wi-Fi support, which is supposed to be three times faster than 802.11n.
The new Mac Pro will be out later this year, but no exact release date or price has been revealed. It will have a new cylinder shape, house the Intel Xeon chip (with up to 12 cores), a PCIe controller with 1.25Gbps reads and 1Gbps writes, And Thunderbolt 2, with 20GBps throughput. It will also support as many as three 4K displays. It also looks like a spaceship.
This is what I’m most excited about, as the owner of an iPhone and an iPad. The new look of the iOS is much more flat. iOS 7 will be available for iPhone 4, 4S, and 5; iPad 2, 3, and 4; the iPad mini; and iPod Touches that are fifth generation or later. Developers are able to play with iOS 7 right now, but the rest of us are going to have to wait until the fall.
- new icons, buttons, and color schemes
- a translucent keyboard
- the control center, which is accessed by swiping up from the bottom of the screen, will allow the user to access brightness, volume, airplane mode, Bluetooth, Do Not Disturb, Airplay, music playback, and a new flashlight app
- new camera app
- multi-tasking across all apps
- better battery life
- intelligent scheduling
- adaptation to network connections
- automatic app updates
- new version of Safari (with an end to the eight-tab limit, praise be to the Apple Gods…I like my tabs, okay?)
- AirDrop, a file-sharing tool available for iPhone 5, 4th-gen iPads, and the iPad mini
You can get a more in-depth look at all the features, along with a review, on CNet.
iTunes Radio is setting out to compete with the likes of Pandora and Spotify. It will be free, and customers of iTunes Match will enjoy an ad-free experience. It will initially only roll out to the United States, with other countries getting access later. You’ll be able to use it on iPhone, iPod Touch, iPads, Macs, PCs, and Apple TV. CNet has a great hands-on with it here.
I’ll keep you updated on any further news that comes out of WWDC this week!