At Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference, CEO Steve Jobs takes the stage to lift the curtain on iCloud, Lion OS, the latest iOS update, and maybe one more thing.
The lines at Moscone began forming Sunday night around 9 pm, and by 3 am it was already a zoo. I suspect that maybe some people think it's a new Apple store, or it's an early line for tha last Harry Potter movie. Could this really be a developer conference? Could this really be the time when the nerds take over? I think so.
This opening keynote promises no new hardware (although nobody is ruling it out). This is the power of Apple, of Steve Jobs, an unprecedented combination that rivals any icon or iconic brand ever. Maybe not Bono and U2 or the Pope, but somewhere approaching that. Technology as the new religion.
9:56 a.m. PST: We're all waiting now. A little James Brown going on.
9:57 a.m. PST: At this point, we're all staring at a big fat Apple logo. Listening to some old school music. But It's All Right by JJ Jackson. Funking out. I think Jobs is going to breakdance later.
9:59 a.m. PST: Jobs expected to come out in a white mock turtleneck this time, in homage to the white iPhone and white iPad. (Just kidding. Please.) Now more James Brown, I Feel Good. Louder, we're amping up now.
10:01 a.m. PST: And there he is. The thin, the gaunt, the jeaned, the black turtlenecked. The one and only, Steve Jobs.
10:02 a.m. PST: A "we love you." What is this a Beyonce concert? Jobs said we sold out in two hours. 5200 attendees. He's apologizing for those who couldn't make it. "We don't know where else to have it."
10:07 a.m. PST: Mac OS X was built 10 years ago, on a Unix foundation. He's showing what it looked like 10 years ago. Not really that much different than it is now, at least on the surface. Lion will have over 250 new features. He's only going to talk about 10.
10:08 a.m. PST: One of the first things . . . multi-touch gestures. Scrolling, tapp to zoom, dynamically zoom, swipe between photos. Schiller says there are more implications. You can get rid of the scroll bar, for example -- touch helps you eliminate that.
10:09 a.m. PST: Second, full screen applications. Make this a standard method for developers. A system control in the app. With a swipe gesture, you can get back to your desktop, and then switch back to your full screen application.
10:10 a.m. PST: All of the standard Apple apps will be full sreen out of the box (Safari, Garage Band, iPhoto). Safari will have a nice e-mail like list of open tabs to read through for later.
10:11 a.m. PST: Next, Mission Control. Like Expose, Spaces, etc. All of it is unified now in a single view. All of your Spaces sit on the top of the screen, and it includes one just for your Dashboard widgets.
10:12 a.m. PST: Time for a demo of these features. Starting with Safari, no scroll bar, just scrolling with his finger, quickly, and -- in their words -- fluidly. Tap to zoom in and out, just like other Apple touch devices.
10:13 a.m. PST: Swipe between pages in Safari now. So you don't have to hit the back or forward button. Just swipe. Nice.
10:14 a.m. PST: Now he's showing iPhoto in full screen mode. And he's swiping between his dashboard view, his desktop view, and the full screen view of Safari.
10:15 a.m. PST: Photo booth in full screen mode. As he moves, these little birds circling his head move with him. This is using face-tracking, built into Lion.
10:16 a.m. PST: Three-finger swipe takes you to Mission Control. easily click on an app, on the desktop view, on the full screen app, on the dashboard. You can also do a quick look at each of your windows.
10:17 a.m. PST:
You can drag and drop apps into your Spaces and create a new one, really simply, really easily. You can delete the apps from Spaces and they fly back onto the Mission Control view. I would say this is really just taking the OS UI to another fabulous level. Not earth-shattering, but really nice. For developers, the ability to have some of these capabilities, like full screen apps, is fantastic as well.
10:18 a.m. PST: Now Schiller is talking about how the Mac App Store has surpassed every retail channel for buying any software anywhere. Clearly we're going to hear more about what's happening in the Mac App Store now ...
10:19 a.m. PST: What's new: The App Store is built right in. For developers, you can build in in-app purchases, push notifications, built in sandboxing, delta updates.
10:20 a.m. PST: Fifth new thing: Launchpad. Anywhere you are, you can make a pinch gesture and your apps all fly onto your desktop screen. All new purchased or downloaded apps can be put into the LaunchPad and you can organize in folders, just like in iOS.
10:21 a.m. PST: Sixth item: Resume. When you launch an application, it brings you right back where you were when you quit -- the document, the templates, everything. When you install a new version of software, Lion brings you back where you were when you restart your system. Awesome sauce.
10:22 a.m. PST: Seventh item is Autosave. Uh, duh. Not just the ability to do it in the background. The name of the doc, for example, is a menu item at top of doc -- you can do things like "revert to last opened" or you can "lock" it so it can't be changed. Another menu item is "Duplicate" -- one click and you're done.
10:23 a.m. PST: Eighth feature is Versions. Autosave is saving versions of the document as you are working. It's all automatic.
10:24 a.m. PST: But you can also do it manually. These are not full versions. It just copies the changes. So no worries about storage space. In the doc menu (which is new), you can browse all versions, with a time scale on it. You can make any one the current version.
10:26 a.m. PST: I like how it's just like iOS, so that I can organize my apps the way I like. The blending of the mobile OS and the desktop/laptop OS. These are really good ideas, and somewhat expected.
10:28 a.m. PST: OK, autosave. We get it. It saves for us. We're stupid, we need it saved for us. No need to demo this I don't think, is there? Now if it can auto-remind me to get a Father's Day gift, with suggestions, that would be good.
In the Versions feature, you can take things from one version and move it to another -- say a picture. That's nifty.
10:29 a.m. PST: AirDrop is a peer to peer network over WiFi. It's in the Finder. You tap it, see others who are running it. Drag and drop a document on top of someone else's computer. (Users have to confirm on both sides, thankfully.) It uses auto-discovery and auto-setup. It's just there.
10:30 a.m. PST: No more USB shuffle.
10:31 a.m. PST: E-mail. Full screen, three column view, full height message window, favorites bar for favorite folders. Search in mail has search suggestions. Works across mail database.
10:32 a.m. PST: Conversation view in e-mail: This is really nice. Instead of it being in these colored, barred, indented view, it shows you all the mail in mini windows within the message. It also works when getting messages from any other mail system.
10:34 a.m. PST:
The e-mail looks like the mail in iOS, but these new features are much better. I really like the idea of a favorites bar, but the search is great as well. This starts to make e-mail more of an information store, rather than "e-mail."
In search, you can actually do a multi-faceted search -- a person, a subject, a timeframe.
10:35 a.m. PST: In a conversation view, you can hover over a particular part of the conversation and reply just to that part. They also have a migration from Windows. Wonder how that works. 3000 new APIs for developers in Lion as well.
10:37 a.m. PST:
Lion will only be available in the Mac App Store. Downloads and upgrades just like any app. About 4GB in size. You can use it on all of your authorized Macs. $29. Wowser. Past Mac OSes were about $129.
10:38 a.m. PST: The audience liked that, and I'm sure consumers will as well. It's available for developers in preview now, available for consumers in July.
10:39 a.m. PST: Now onto iOS 5. scott Forstall, SVP iOS Software. The other Apple rock star.
Fritz E Nelson: Over 200 million iOS devices sold. 44% of the market he says. Compared to 28% for Android, 19% for RIM. Not sure of the source of that data.
10:40 a.m. PST: More than 25 million iPads sold in 14 months, Forstall says.
10:41 a.m. PST: 425,000 apps in the app store. 90,000 of these for the iPad.
10:42 a.m. PST:
14 billion apps downloaded by customers. These numbers are so large, it's hard to make sense of. Developers have made over $2.5 billion. The obligatory Angry Birds reference.
10:43 a.m. PST: Showing an FAA approved app for pilots.
Now onto iOS 5.
10:44 a.m. PST:
Forstall calls this a "major release." More than 1500 new APIs. More than 200 new user features. Again, we'll see 10 user features.
10:46 a.m. PST: Notification Center. A single place for all of them. You can get there with a downward swipe. Kinda like, um, Android.
Mail, IMs, Phone, Facebook updates, scores, stocks, weather, and so on. The notifications are also not interrupting. There's an animation in the top of the screen. You can get to it or ignore it.
10:47 a.m. PST:
Also, when you are in the lock screen, you can see more notifications. Slide your finger across that notification and it takes you to the app that sent the notification. So for people who just can't wait to be notified, it's much easier. They should call this ADD 2.0.
(click image for larger view)
The Newstand has a similar look and feel to the iBook store
10:48 a.m. PST: Second item is "Newstand." Looks like iBook Store.
10:49 a.m. PST:
You can get subscriptions. The list of magazines is big. National Geo, Spin, Vanity Fair, Popular Science, Esquire, GQ. Oprah (wait wait OMG . . . for real?). NY Times.
10:50 a.m. PST:
There's now a single place in the App Store for all of these. And they get auto-downloaded once you subscribe. The downloads happen in the background. Happy times. (I wonder if it delivers me a notification that the new issue is there.)
This is just an organizing mechanism, plus auto download.
10:51 a.m. PST:
Twitter is the third item. Twitter, yes. You can have Twitter. Wait, can't you already have this? Now there's single sign-on. Any app you download that connects with Twitter, you're already logged in (if you give it permission).
10:52 a.m. PST:
Twitter is associated with all Apple apps. For example, photos, videos from YouTube, pages from Safari. It also includes contact integration. You can update photos in your contact list, for example.
10:53 a.m. PST: This is basically Twitter integration at the OS level.
Fourth item: Safari. Points out that Safari's open source engine is the basis of Android browser.
10:54 a.m. PST:
New feature in Safari: Reader. It's a button in the URL bar. Hit that and it gets rid of all the distractions, including multiple pages . . . puts it all into a single scrolling story. Seems like all the ads disappeared too.
10:56 a.m. PST:
Next feature in Safari: Reading List. A way to quickly save an item to read later. It becomes available across all iOS devices automatically. So goodbye Instapaper (from Todd Moore, a BYTE editor and Apple developer sitting next to me).
Safari also now will have a tabbed browser (more applause).
10:57 a.m. PST: People are liking Reader. I can't say I blame them. But publishers may not be happy.
10:59 a.m. PST: Fifth new iOS feature: Reminders. Store your lists on your phone, with the phone reminding you about them. You can store these lists, and you can store associated dates so you get reminded on that date. You can set up a geo-fence from your location -- so let's say you are leaving the office, it shows that you actually are.
11:04 a.m. PST: Seventh iOS 5 feature: in email, you can drag addresses, rich text formatting, flag messages, search entire contents of all of your messages (on the phone or on the server). Swipe to inbox on the iPad.
11:05 a.m. PST:
Support for S/MIME added. Shows a lock icon on the e-mail so you know it's encrypted. This is for the enterprise, Forstall says.
He also says that the dictionary is built in for all apps, so he's showing it in use in the e-mail client.
11:06 a.m. PST: A new variant for the keyboard for the iPad. There are grab handles on the keyboard button and it splits the keyboard so you can type with your thumbs. This is persistent for every app in the system. Sounds really good. We'll see what it's like in practice.
11:08 a.m. PST: Item Eight: PC Free. Woo hoo! Finally. No need to connect your iPxd to your computer for syncing and setup.
Forstall says "we're ushering in the Post PC World." Hence, why should the devices have to be tied to computers. For those who want their iOS device to be their only device. But I say this is good for everyone.
11:09 a.m. PST: Software updates over the air. Setup on the device itself, not using a computer. The updates are now Delta Updates.
11:10 a.m. PST: Next up (#9) Game Center. Forstall says there are more than 100,000 game apps in the app store.
11:12 a.m. PST: Turn-based games, more achievement features for those playing against one another.
Next, #10, iMessage. A bit of a hush among the crowd. Forstall says they are creating a new messaging system between all iOS users. Not just iPhone anymore.
11:13 a.m. PST:
Texts, photos, videos, contacts, group messaging. Also includes delivery receipts, and read receipts and typing indications. For all of you stalkers out there.
11:14 a.m. PST: This is pushed to all devices, so you can pick it up from where you left off, from device to device. The messages are all encrypted over the air ... for, you know, stray politicians and athletes with too much time on their hands (and other body parts).
11:18 a.m. PST: AirPlay mirroring. You can mirror your entire iPad 2 to your television wirelessly. WiFi sync to iTunes. (This is sort of like the end of a fireworks show. Lots of little explosions of applause.)
New developer tools. Enhancements to XCode, complex image manipulation from within the app.
11:19 a.m. PST: A developer kit coming today.
iOS will ship this Fall. It will support iPhone 3GS & 4, iPad 1 and 2, iPod touch third and fourth
Now Mr. Jobs heading back up to talk about iCloud.
11:22 a.m. PST:
Insight we had 10 years ago: Your digital hub would become the center for your digital life. Your videos, your photos, your music. But this has broken down. All of your devices have photos and music and video. I buy these things right on my iPhone. But then I have to sync it to the Mac. Mac has photos, and it must be synced to my iPad. Keeping these devices synced is driving us crazy.
We have a solution, Jobs says. "We are going to demote the PC and the Mac to be just like a device... we are going to move the digital hub into the cloud."
11:23 a.m. PST:
Whatever I have on my iPhone goes to the cloud, and it gets pushed down to my other devices. It's all in sync. I don't have to think about it, I don't have to be near my device.
11:24 a.m. PST:
"Some people think a cloud is just a hard disk in the sky," Jobs says, to laughs. "We think it's way more than that. And we call it iCloud." All of this is integrated with your apps. It just all works." (His favorite new phrase.)
"Now you may think, why should I believe them. They're the ones who brought me Mobile Me." Laughs. "Let me just say it wasn't our finest hour."
11:25 a.m. PST:
Contacts, calendar and mail in MobileMe. We've rebuilt it all toward iCloud, Jobs said. Make a new contact, it's in the cloud. Bingo.
(The hope here is that all developers have access to this for all apps and all data. The fear might be that Apple controls the file system.) So far ... wondering how this is different than MobileMe.
11:26 a.m. PST: Apple has also added Calendar Sharing. So you can share a calendar appointment, and it's all managed in iCloud.
11:27 a.m. PST: Now Jobs is talking about Mail. Mail account @me.com. New messages to all devices. Inbox and folders kept up to date on all devices. And "no ads." "We just don't want ads." A knock at all the other free mail apps.
MobileMe ceases to exist. iCloud is now FREEEEEEEEEEE. (Why didn't that get the biggest applause?)
11:28 a.m. PST:
There are more apps in iCloud. First is the App Store. Get the app on your device. Your purchase history is on all your devices, even if the app is not on that device. There's a cloud icon and you can click that to push the app onto a new device.
11:29 a.m. PST: Buy an app once, you get it on all your devices without paying again. Same with iBooks. Push the button, and the book comes to any/all devices. Also, if you're reading it on your iPad, and bookmark the page, the bookmark is pushed to all of your devices. "It all just works."
11:30 a.m. PST: Jobs is talking now about Backup. Wireless backup to the cloud. So you can be completely PC free, Jobs says. Get a new phone, type in your ID and password, it all gets updated to that new device.
Backs up device settings, photos, app data and more.
11:31 a.m. PST:
Final three apps ... Jobs calls these the most inventive part of iCloud. First one is documents in the cloud.
11:32 a.m. PST: If you create a Pages document on the iPad, it automatically uploads it and stores it in the cloud. Automatically. Pushes to all devices that run Pages. Put this into Pages, Numbers and Keynotes. Last week's new versions have these in there.
Roger Rosner, VP of iWork will demo this.
11:33 a.m. PST:
It would be good if you could put your Google Docs and your Microsoft Office docs into iCloud and open them in these apps. Or vice versa.
11:36 a.m. PST:
iCloud grabs all changes to documents automatically. I think the one thing I would wonder about -- though there's no real escaping this -- is the amount of bandwidth this will all consume, at least on devices connected via 3G. Wondering if you can set it to only sync on Wifi.
11:37 a.m. PST:
Releasing iCloud storage APIs. This is key. Developers can easily tie apps into the storage system.
You can also store key value data only, say for stock tracking apps.
The APIs also support Macs and PCs too. This is essentially DropBox.
11:38 a.m. PST: Not sure if the APIs support Macs and PCs. But iCloud is available for those devices.
11:39 a.m. PST: Jobs is talking about Photo Streaming. Pushing photos to all devices. This is built into iPhoto -- it's a button in there.
11:40 a.m. PST: It's also built into iPhoto on the Mac. On the PC, it uses the Pictures folder. And it's built into Apple TV. So there will be a Photo Stream on the menu. Apple TV talks to the Photo Stream service (not the PC).
11:42 a.m. PST: Photo Stream will store the last 1,000 photos for you. Helping to conserve storage space.
11:44 a.m. PST:
Jobs said that iCloud works over WiFi. So perhaps that means it doesn't work over mobile network.
11:45 a.m. PST: Finally, iTunes in the cloud. The big expected announcement. This is kind of a no-duh moment at this point.
11:46 a.m. PST: A purchase button is now in iTunes, and you can look at your purchase history. With this, you can download any of these items -- say a song -- onto any device, without an additional charge. No charge for multiple downloads to different devices. How many years have we been waiting for this?
11:47 a.m. PST: There's a button called "Not On This Device" which shows you right away what you've purchased but isn't on that device. I like. Thank you, Apple. That is helpful.
11:48 a.m. PST: When you purchase a new song, now it comes to all of your devices at once.
11:49 a.m. PST:
So you can selectively bring an already-purchased song to any device; and any new songs come to all devices.
11:50 a.m. PST:
All of these 9 iCloud apps are available for FREEEEEEEEEEE.
11:51 a.m. PST: Competitors, Jobs says, can't make it so it "just works." Because they haven't integrated all of it -- the apps and the cloud.
5 GB of free storage. We are not counting purchased Photo Stream, Apps and Books.
When? Developer beta is available today.
11:52 a.m. PST: For end users, today there will be iTunes in the cloud in beta on iOS 4.3. iCloud will come with iOS 5 this Fall, of course.
11:53 a.m. PST:
"There's one more thing." Laughter and applause.
11:54 a.m. PST:
Jobs says it pertains to iTunes in the cloud.
11:55 a.m. PST: If you have songs you've ripped yourself ... iTunes Match service. It uses the fact that there are 18 million songs in the iTunes music store. Software will scan non iTunes music and match it up to what's in the store. Takes just minutes (instead of the weeks -- a dig at Amazon and Google).
The songs that remain (where there's no match), Apple will upload them.
And iTunes Match will upgrade those to 256 kbps AAC DRM-free. It costs $24.99 per year.
11:57 a.m. PST: He's going to compare . . . library in the cloud is scan and match, rather than upload. Price for 5,000 songs is $24.99. Amazon is $50. Google hasn't announced its price. 20,000 songs is still $24.99 on Apple, $200 for Amazon.
11:58 a.m. PST:
Showing a new data center in North Carolina. Jobs says it's as eco-friendly as you can make a data center. It looks massive. He says he thinks we're ready to support this.
Jobs is starting to wind things down now.
12:00 p.m. PST:
Jobs looked frail, but happy. He was extremely thin, but he was there for the entire keynote, sitting aside the stage. He walked a bit slowly, but as always it's such an inspirational thing just to see him.
12:01 p.m. PST: Thank you for tuning in everyone. More coverage coming on InformationWeek.com throughout the day.
Server Market SplitsvilleJust because the server market's in the doldrums doesn't mean innovation has ceased. Far from it -- server technology is enjoying the biggest renaissance since the dawn of x86 systems. But the primary driver is now service providers, not enterprises.