WWDC 2014 preview: Apple's interest in home, health & headphones

Posted:
in General Discussion edited June 2014
Apple has been relatively quiet since late last year, and the company is expected to break the silence with a bang by unveiling a slew of new initiatives at this year's edition of its annual Worldwide Developers Conference. AppleInsider takes a look at what could be in the cards when Tim Cook takes the stage on Monday.


Schedule

WWDC 14 kicks off on Monday with a keynote address helmed by Apple CEO Tim Cook at 10 a.m. Pacific, 1 p.m. Eastern. You can follow along with AppleInsider's live coverage from the keynote auditorium, and we will continue to report from the Moscone Center throughout the week as the conference unfolds.

What we'll probably see

iOS 8


iOS 8 concept by Bill Labus


Though it's only seven years old, iOS has arguably become Apple's most important product thanks to the runaway success of the iPhone and iPad. The OS X-derived mobile operating system received a radical visual overhaul in iOS 7, and iOS 8 is likely to continue refinements to the user interface while introducing a few new tentpole features.

Chief among those new features is thought to be a centralized repository for collating and displaying personal health and fitness data from the already-vast and constantly growing array of iOS-compatible "quantified self" devices, which may be dubbed "Healthbook." The app -- and an accompanying framework likely called "HealthKit" -- would let developers focus on hardware and firmware development rather than worrying about how to get their data into users' hands.




Apple's divisive Maps service is also likely to see stage time and is believed to have benefitted from a major push to improve both data accuracy and usefulness. In addition to beefing up the data backend with enhanced point-of-interest data, the next version of Maps is thought to leverage Apple's HopStop and Embark acquisitions to integrate public transit information directly into the service. This would allow users to get directions involving trains or bus service without using third-party apps as they do now.

Also rumored to be on the docket is a new, iOS-based push into home automation. Initial reports suggested that it would involve an Apple-designed abstraction layer for existing products -- similar to the Healthbook rumors -- but it's now believed that it will instead constitute an expansion of the existing Made for iPhone licensing program that certifies third-party products for quality and iOS compatibility.

Finally, Apple is rumored to provide third-party developers with a way to access Siri. That could be demonstrated with the introduction of a new, Shazam-powered song identification function to the personal digital assistant.

Mac OS X 10.10


WWDC 2014 OS X banner showing El Capitan in California's Yosemite Valley. | Source: The Verge


Little is known about the next version of Mac OS X, with the Apple rumor mill largely focusing its attention on iOS 8. Most speculation centers on the venerable desktop operating system's name, though banners appearing at WWDC seem to have settled that debate in favor of "OS X Yosemite," after the California national park.

Apple is thought to have devoted much of its attention to the user interface, with OS X 10.10 believed to be on the receiving end of a visual refresh similar to the one iOS received under new design czar Jony Ive. The iCloud versions of Apple's iWork suite are likely representative of the direction Ive will take the Mac desktop, though it's possible the changes will be more subtle.

Hardware


Photo via Paul Stamatiou.


Having just closed a controversial $3 billion acquisition of Beats, Apple may provide a look at its plans for the popular headphone and speaker lineup. The company has been quick to point out that the deal was made primarily to get Beats's fledgling streaming service as well as cofounders Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre, but the hardware business is worth more than $1 billion per year and will live on under the leadership of marketing chief Phil Schiller.

Apple is also though to be preparing to launch a new, less-costly iMac in the near future. However, recent leaks from Cupertino have suggested the iMac refresh won't see the light of day at WWDC, and presumably will debut later in the year.

What we probably won't see

Some of the more fanciful changes for iOS 8, like split-screen multitasking on the iPad or a new iOS-based mobile payments system, are said to be unlikely to see the light of day next week.

Two long-awaited products that are expected to finally hit shelves later this year -- a revamped Apple TV and the new "iWatch" -- are also likely to be kept in Apple's pocket. They might debut alongside the next-generation iPhone or iPad, both of which will probably remain unseen until this fall.

Additionally, Apple will likely remain mum on its rumored new MacBook with a 12-inch clamshell form factor. The introduction of that device could coincide with the retirement of the 13-inch non-Retina MacBook Pro, but an announcement is unlikely until later in the year.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 104
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 29,068member
    iOS 8 will be rechristened "iOS VIII" to visually harmonize with OS X. ????
  • Reply 2 of 104
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,222member

    I'm just glad to see some actual things coming out of Apple...

  • Reply 3 of 104
    michael scripmichael scrip Posts: 1,910member
    "WWDC 2014 Preview... AppleInsider takes a look at what [I][B]could[/B][/I] be in the cards when Tim Cook takes the stage on Monday."

    So is it a preview... or are you guessing?

    Using terms like "expected to" and "we'll probably see" doesn't lend much confidence.

    But hey... at least it's a new story on a Saturday :)
  • Reply 4 of 104
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    macxpress wrote: »
    I'm just glad to see some actual things coming out of Apple...

    …like they do every year.

    "So is it a preview... or are you guessing?

    It's not a preview it's a predication.
  • Reply 5 of 104
    appexappex Posts: 687member
    Apple Thunderbolt Display 4K 24-inch and much thinner. Thunderbolt 2, USB 3 & SDXC hubs. 999 USD.
  • Reply 6 of 104
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 4,984member

    Whatever the **** happens at WWDC, I predict millions of troll posts, shrieks of outrage and disappointments, accusations of betrayal, statements of indignation and threats to abandon Apple, "Tim needs to go" posts, "Steve would have never approved of this" bullshit, sensational proclamations of doom based on the OSX redesign, "most disappointing WWDC ever" posts, "where the **** is Apple TV + iWatch + iPhone 6" posts, "lol Apple copied shittily implemented feature X from product Y" posts, "Apple sucks because they didnt reveal some product I'm fantasizing about but most people wouldnt give a shit about" posts, and more such horse-shit. Those are the ONLY guaranteed things at this point in time. Everything else is speculation and bullshit. 

  • Reply 7 of 104
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    appex wrote: »
    Apple Thunderbolt Display 4K 24-inch and much thinner. Thunderbolt 2, USB 3 & SDXC hubs. 999 USD.

    1) I think 24" is too small.

    2) How can they do a $999 4K UHD IPS ATD when no one else can come close to that price point?
  • Reply 8 of 104
    I can't waiting coming out for iOS 8 new product so soon yay!!
  • Reply 9 of 104
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 5,885member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppeX View Post



    Apple Thunderbolt Display 4K 24-inch and much thinner. Thunderbolt 2, USB 3 & SDXC hubs. 999 USD.

     

    Not only won’t it happen, it can’y possibly happen at that price.

  • Reply 10 of 104
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post



    1) I think 24" is too small.



    2) How can they do a $999 4K UHD IPS ATD when no one else can come close to that price point?

    24" is way too small. I have a 30" Cinema so I would like a 4K at that size or even slightly larger. The sweet spot would be $2000 - 2400. I can't recall what I paid for my 30" but I think it was closer to $3000. 

     

    I doubt they are announcing anything like that at WWDC but a new Apple 4K 30" would probably seal the deal for me buying a new Mac Pro.

  • Reply 11 of 104
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,529member
    slurpy wrote: »
    Whatever the **** happens at WWDC, I predict millions of troll posts, shrieks of outrage and disappointments, accusations of betrayal, statements of indignation and threats to abandon Apple, "Tim needs to go" posts, "Steve would have never approved of this" bullshit, sensational proclamations of doom based on the OSX redesign, "most disappointing WWDC ever" posts, "where the **** is Apple TV + iWatch + iPhone 6" posts, "lol Apple copied shittily implemented feature X from product Y" posts, "Apple sucks because they didnt reveal some product I'm fantasizing about but most people wouldnt give a shit about" posts, <span style="font-size:13px;line-height:1.4em;">and more such horse-shit. Those are the ONLY guaranteed things at this point in time. Everything else is speculation and bullshit. </span>

    Don't forget the billions of Devs that will abandon Apple due to Beats (Dr Dre).
  • Reply 12 of 104
    ziadjkziadjk Posts: 52member
    slurpy wrote: »
    Whatever the **** happens at WWDC, I predict millions of troll posts, shrieks of outrage and disappointments, accusations of betrayal, statements of indignation and threats to abandon Apple, ... 

    We get one of these comments on AI every year as well haha XD
  • Reply 13 of 104
    ericthehalfbeeericthehalfbee Posts: 3,390member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jungmark View Post





    Don't forget the billions of Devs that will abandon Apple due to Beats (Dr Dre).

     

    They're already leaving to go develop for Android, cuz', you know, Android has more devices. At least that's what Eric Schmidt told me back in December of 2011.

     

    http://techcrunch.com/2012/06/06/seven-point-one-percent/

  • Reply 14 of 104
    michael scripmichael scrip Posts: 1,910member
    solipsismx wrote: »
    It's not a preview it's a predication.

    Yeah that's pretty much it.

    But they did use the word preview... just sayin'

    ;)
  • Reply 15 of 104
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 29,068member
    They're already leaving to go develop for Android, cuz', you know, Android has more devices. At least that's what Eric Schmidt told me back in December of 2011.

    http://techcrunch.com/2012/06/06/seven-point-one-percent/

    You're going to make Schmidt cry.
  • Reply 16 of 104
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    I'm hoping we get an article from DED this weekend that goes over the history of WWDC. My suggestion is based on the fact that most don't realize that HW has been announced, released, and/or demoed at nearly all (if not all) WWDC's since 2003.

    Yeah that's pretty much it.

    But they did use the word preview... just sayin'

    ;)

    Well they got the prefix right. Since this about what may come in 2 days I think we should refer to these articles as Apple pre-come. I see no reason why anyone would object to that term¡
  • Reply 17 of 104
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    jungmark wrote: »
    Don't forget the billions of Devs that will abandon Apple due to Beats (Dr Dre).

    Because this is SO Apple:

    43970
  • Reply 18 of 104
    michael scripmichael scrip Posts: 1,910member
    They're already leaving to go develop for Android, cuz', you know, Android has more devices. At least that's what Eric Schmidt told me back in December of 2011.

    http://techcrunch.com/2012/06/06/seven-point-one-percent/

    That's one quote I bet Eric Schmidt wishes he never made.

    He's right though... there are more devices running some version of Android than any other platform on the planet.

    The problem is... many (most?) of those Android devices are complete garbage, selling for an absurdly low price, and are purchased by people who will never pay money for apps. That's why developers are not sprinting towards Android.

    We tend to only talk about a handful of flagship Android phones on tech blogs (Galaxy S5, LG G3, HTC One, etc)

    The funny thing is... "Android" is made up of much more than those handful of phones. No one talks about the utterly cheap phones sold in China and India... even though they make up the majority of Android sales.

    Android fans brag that 8 out of 10 smartphones sold today are running Android... but they forget to mention that 6 out of those 8 are crap.

    But yeah... Android is "winning" :rolleyes:

    If it was simply about the number of devices a platform has... developers would choose Android without hesitation.

    They're not... so what does mean?

    If 80% market share is not enough to make a developer consider Android... what is? That's why I always laugh at the market share fanboys. We get it... Android has the most market share. But what are they doing with it?

    Before anyone jumps on me... yes I know there are plenty of developers for Android. My point is... why are there still so many iOS-first and iOS-only apps out there?

    Didn't they get the memo that Android is winning?
  • Reply 19 of 104
    michael scripmichael scrip Posts: 1,910member
    solipsismx wrote: »
    Well they got the prefix right. Since this about what may come in 2 days I think we should refer to these articles as Apple pre-come. I see no reason why anyone would object to that term¡

    I was just thinking "What We Think We'll See at WWDC" would be a much more appropriate headline.

    Using the word "preview" makes it sound like they have actual knowledge about the event... not just guesses.
  • Reply 20 of 104
    curtis hannahcurtis hannah Posts: 1,621member
    appex wrote: »
    Apple Thunderbolt Display 4K 24-inch and much thinner. Thunderbolt 2, USB 3 & SDXC hubs. 999 USD.
    Very likely later this year.
    solipsismx wrote: »
    1) I think 24" is too small.

    2) How can they do a $999 4K UHD IPS ATD when no one else can come close to that price point?
    thats why they probably will make it multi size like IMac. 2. The current one is relatively to expensive at its price but apple can do wonders making a 4k display at $1000 would be no brainier, of course they may wait a year till it's ready.

    mstone wrote: »
    24" is way too small. I have a 30" Cinema so I would like a 4K at that size or even slightly larger. The sweet spot would be $2000 - 2400. I can't recall what I paid for my 30" but I think it was closer to $3000. 

    I doubt they are announcing anything like that at WWDC but a new Apple 4K 30" would probably seal the deal for me buying a new Mac Pro.
    I don't see why 21-$1000,23 to
    25 inch, can't be a $1300 and a new 30 inch for $1500-1800
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