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5/31/2014
08:06 AM
Eric Zeman
Eric Zeman
Commentary
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Apple WWDC 2014: My Wish List

Apple execs take the stage June 2 to show off the company's latest innovations. Here's what I'd like to hear.

for Apple to give users more control over where apps land on their screens.

Dynamic home screen content: Both Android and Windows Phone offer changing/updating content on their respective home screens. Android does this through widgets, and Windows Phone does it via Live Tiles. I'd love to see Apple merge these two concepts into something that allows app icons on the home screens to offer new information or content when relevant or available.

OS X
New design: Apple's desktop platform is overdue for a visual overhaul. Reports have for months suggested that OS X is headed for an iOS-like redesign. I'd welcome a refreshed look, as long as Apple doesn't go overboard with the colors. Aesthetics aside, it would behoove Apple to create more parity between iOS and OS X, which would aid usability of both platforms.

Siri: Who doesn't want to sit in their office and talk to their computer? Siri needs to make a big splash in OS X. It's been available to Apple's mobile devices for more than two years; surely Apple can squash all that power into its laptops and desktops. Siri for OS X needs to be more feature-rich than she has been for iOS, however, and must have improved text transcription powers from the get-go.

AirDrop: This tool lets iOS and OS X device owners share files via WiFi -- but only with similar devices. In other words, I can use AirDrop to send a file from my iPad to my iPhone, or from my iMac to my MacBook Air, but not from my iPad to my iMac or vice versa. Apple needs to plug this hole and make AirDrop compatible between iOS and OS X.

Hardware
Apple TV: Everyone wants it to happen, but it won't. Apple has played coy with its Apple TV product for years. If it does anything new with Apple TV this year, it likely won't be until the fall. Still, some wishful thinking can't hurt, right?

iPhone/iPad: Chatter about the iPhone 6 is nearly non-stop. It would be great to see Apple break its once-yearly upgrade cycle for its smartphones and tablets, but that seems unlikely. As with Apple TV, expect new mobile devices in the fall.

Hybrid laptop: If Apple announces any new hardware at WWDC this year, I hope the long-rumored touchscreen laptop is it. The rumor mill says Apple is working on a new laptop that uses a touch-enabled version of OS X with a touchscreen. The device might have a high-resolution 12-inch screen, which falls in between those of the 11-inch and 13-inch MacBook Airs. But this could be more wishful thinking on my part.

What do you think? What's on your WWDC wish list? Add your own thoughts in the comments below.

What do Uber, Bank of America, and Walgreens have to do with your mobile app strategy? Find out in the new Maximizing Mobility issue of InformationWeek Tech Digest.

Eric is a freelance writer for InformationWeek specializing in mobile technologies. View Full Bio
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jgherbert
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jgherbert,
User Rank: Ninja
6/9/2014 | 1:43:00 PM
Re: Wish List vs WWDC 2014
I fear I am not brave enough to roll with a beta release, so I will find out how cool it is later this year. I suppose I'll also be (at the same time) figuring out whether to get the expected new iPhone as well, so it's going to be all change I suspect!
mak63
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mak63,
User Rank: Ninja
6/9/2014 | 1:23:29 PM
Re: Wish List vs WWDC 2014
It seems that Family Sharing will allow to share any apps or media content. I believe music will fall in the media content category.

In any case, you can always sign up for the beta and tell us all about it.
jgherbert
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jgherbert,
User Rank: Ninja
6/7/2014 | 11:46:36 AM
Re: Wish List vs WWDC 2014
@mak63: Yeah, I'm very curious to see how the Family sharing mode thing works. I read that developers of new apps will automatically allow their apps installed on up to 6 devices to allow this to work, and that existing app developers are being asked to opt in. Something like that. 

I'm not entirely sure how this will really work, but if they're saying that I can finally have all 5 of my family members using unique Apple IDs, yet by sharing my credit card across those accounts I can buy an app once and make it available to all of them for free, then that would be a huge win for me. Make it happen with music too please. I'm bored of having to pay for apps and choons on my device, then my wife's, then the kids. And boy, it would be so much simpler than having to buy DRM-free music on my account then manually importing thos same files into their accounts, right?

 
jgherbert
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jgherbert,
User Rank: Ninja
6/7/2014 | 11:36:47 AM
Re: Ecosystem
So I guess off the back of WWDC I am saying thank you ;-) Not only will Airdrop work between iPhone and Mac at last, but they're making moves towards exactly what I asked for - tighter, seamless integration between their products. They've not taken me up on my GPS idea yet, but the other things they announced really do seem to shift in a direction that I think I'm going to really enjoy. Yay!
mak63
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mak63,
User Rank: Ninja
6/2/2014 | 4:13:44 PM
Wish List vs WWDC 2014
I was wondering how Erics feels after the unveiling of the new iOS 8 and see that a few of his wishes have been granted, well kind of...

Swiping keyboard: QuickType keyboard. Some improvements, but no swiping yet.

Siri: Some nice Siri improvements.

Guest/kid mode: Family Sharing. Not what Eric wanted, but at least something for the family.

Split-screen multitasking: Not yet. iOS 23 perhaps.

Mass transit for Maps: MIA. It seems that Apple users don't use public transportation or iOS developers don't think it's necessary.
danielcawrey
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danielcawrey,
User Rank: Ninja
6/2/2014 | 3:44:44 PM
Re: AirDrop
Steve Jobs sure was mad about Google supposedly stealing iOS from Apple to make Android. But I'd say that the two systems are keeping up with each other technologically and competitively. That makes for better products for us consumers, and I think that's great.

I used to be an iPhone user; now I am on Android. I still like the form factor of an iPhone though, so that's why I have a Moto X. With Android, you have many, many choices. 
anon4363085991
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anon4363085991,
User Rank: Apprentice
6/2/2014 | 8:18:05 AM
IOS upgrades
I don't know what swipe is - but I do know that I have a very hard time typing on my phone, and even have difficulty in selecting the right text when I am reading a book on my iPad to select.   My fingers and eyes don't coordinate with IOS.

 

I've been begging for child/guest access to IOS devices for some time.   The finger pad recognition needs to recognize more fingers - to allow my grandchildren to use their fingers.

 

SIRI on my Mac needs a text mode, come to think of it, SIRI on IOS does too.   I'd like to text SIRI without saying anything out loud.
batye
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batye,
User Rank: Ninja
6/2/2014 | 1:50:38 AM
Re: One more thing
like everything else Apple is changing... and it having it ups and downs...  for now Apple get a bit off... with it line of products... but as time goes by... you never know...
moarsauce123
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moarsauce123,
User Rank: Ninja
6/1/2014 | 8:31:26 AM
One more thing
If Apple cannot deliver "one more thing" it will all be uninteresting. Apple used to be the innovation leader and now they are nothing else than yet another consumer electronics company that asks way too much for their unimpressive product.
Susan Fourtané
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Susan Fourtané,
User Rank: Ninja
6/1/2014 | 2:21:28 AM
Re: glass
Bill, 

"My wife has broken the glass on her 5s twice."

I really thought hard about this and couldn't find a way of breaking the glass of an iPhone twice. How did she do it? Is it really Apple to blame because she brakes her phones? :/ 

-Susan
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