Why do we do it? We're depending on the likes of Apple--and its rival, Google, holding its own Google I/O developer gathering later this month--to inject some excitement in our lives. You'd think it was Christmas, and we're all trying to figure out what's under the tree.
|On a crystal clear morning in San Francisco, the typically enormous crowds line up for another Apple developer shindig. Either that or it's an audition for The Voice.|
Likely to be big stories at WWDC 2012: iOS 6 and Mountain Lion, the next versions of the company's mobile and desktop operating systems, respectively. We don't know much about the former, though the speculation includes iCloud updates, Facebook integration, 1080p AirPlay, and/or new 3-D map technology. Mountain Lion was announced back in February; there could be some last-minute surprises, including price and release date.
|At Apple's developer conference you get all kinds. In this case, a mobile device management company making a visual pitch. Either that or what the homeless push around in shopping carts here in San Francisco is just a little different than anywhere else.|
After that, it's anybody's guess: new Mac hardware (updates across the board), including a rumored Retina-display update, processor updates and modifications to system design; Siri enhancements, including support on other devices (we're hoping for a better Siri); more news on iPhone 5; 802.11ac AirPort devices; and more enhancements and announcements around Apple TV.
|If signs make things official, Apple's new OS Mountain Lion will have AirPlay support. Either that or someone at the Moscone convention center hung the wrong sign.|
We create all of this speculation using a combination of tactics: listening to sources in the Apple supply chain, referencing history (these announcements follow particular patterns), and rooting for changes that Apple's customers want. But now it's time to shut up and listen. I'll be working hard to do just that, and to relay, minute by minute, every juicy WWDC tidbit, with a little perspective as we go along.
|Outside the Apple developer conference keynote room, the mysteriously covered sign. Readers: Write your own caption.|
I hope you enjoy the coverage. Feel free to offer your own perspective along the way using our comments section (further below) or by following me on Twitter.
10:00 a.m. PST: Apple is about to start. The music is Paradise, from Coldplay. A bit of a departure. And maybe overshooting things a bit?
The last time we were here, we witnessed Steve Jobs' last address, outside of the city of Cupertino dragging him before the town council to pitch his new building. Sad memories.
10:01 a.m. PST: Siri is introducing the conference. Funny.
Siri found a bunch of venture capitalists to help all the developers in the crowd.
10:02 a.m. PST: Makes fun of Google's Ice Cream Sandwich and Jelly Bean: "Who made up these names, Ben & Jerry?"
Suddenly Siri is a comedian(ne).
10:05 a.m. PST: Starting with the App Store. Over 650,000 apps. About 1/3 are designed for the iPad. "This compares to just a few hundred for our competitors." 30 billion downloads, Apple CEO Tim Cooke says.
|Apple CEO Tim Cooke.|
10:10 a.m. PST: This is the part of the standard issue keynote: Cook gets to brag. But also to give credit to all of the developers in the audience, some 5,000, who have, in his words, changed people's lives. Apps that help the blind, apps that help teach human anatomy.
10:15 a.m. PST: Part of this video demonstration shows a speech language pathology app on the iPad -- makes the learning seem like a toy. Another shows a blind man walking through a forest. Very inspiring. Feels good. Announcement time?
10:16 a.m. PST: New changes in Notebooks, OS 10 and iOS, Cook says. That's what he'll talk about.
10:17 a.m. PST: marketing chief Phil Schiller now about to talk about the MacBook lineup.
10:18 a.m. PST: First, the MacBook Air -- absolutely my favorite. Schiller says: "Every one is trying to copy it." He's right.
10:19 a.m. PST: Latest processor. Ivy Bridge, a 3rd generation core. 2 GHz dual core i7. Up to 60% faster. 512 GB of flash storage now. Big applause. Means faster boost time. 2x faster. Over 500MB of read speed. Also USB 3 -- a bit of a surprise here, given the Apple Thunderbolt moves of late.
|USB 3 -- a bit of a surprise here, given the Apple Thunderbolt moves of late.|
10:20 a.m. PST: Facetime camera -- the same one that is on the MacBook Pro.