What to expect at the 2019 WWDC from iOS 13 and watchOS 6

Posted:
in General Discussion edited June 1
It's going to be a big year for iOS and that's not just wishful thinking, that's based entirely on what we know is coming. Here's what the evidence says Apple is bringing to our iPhones, iPads, and Apple Watches.




Nothing is certain until Tim Cook steps out on stage at WWDC 2019 and says "Good morning." Yet if this year there are very many hopes for what Apple will reveal at San Jose's McEnery Convention Center on June 3, there is also a lot that is as close to certain as can be.

Here's what Apple will definitely announce for iOS, plus what strong evidence says they may also cover. Read our separate coverage of what you can expect for macOS 10.15 -- and the likelihood of new hardware being revealed.

The new iOS 13

Apple is believed to be chiefly focusing on the speed of iOS 13, and in significantly building on several of the company's recurring themes such as health.






Sources have said that the Health app will have a redesigned home page that displays your daily activity more prominently. There's also expected to be a new "hearing health" section which, in part, will provide details about how loud the environment or the music we're playing is.

There's to be a more comprehensive and detailed menstrual cycle section in Health, too.

Reminders is also getting a new look with a grid showing different types of tasks. Then Apple Books is believed to add a rewards system for encouraging people to read more, and the Maps app will improve how it handles favorite locations.

A key update to the Messages app will see it adopting a WhatsApp-like system where you can both choose a new profile picture for it and decide who does, or does not, get to see that image.

Apple is to further develop Screen Time with more parental controls and it's possible that iOS 13 will also see an update to Bedtime. That should see your phone doing more or offering more options for dimming the screen and switching on Do Not Disturb on a schedule that helps you sleep. It may also incorporate a sleep-tracking feature to refine these choices, though that's at least as likely to be a 2020 feature as 2019.

Hardware features

It's likely now that Apple will introduce its own version of the functionality offered by Luna Display. That's a hardware and software system that lets you use an iPad as a second monitor for a Mac.

There has been one questionable report that claims iOS 13 will not be supported on the iPhone SE, iPhone 6, iPhone 5s or older models, nor on older iPads. However, it's unsubstantiated and highly counting against its accuracy is the fact that the iPhone SE, for instance, is still a currently manufactured model in India.

Then there has also been a more positive rumor that Apple is changing how you can get better photo management. The claim is that you'll be able to take images from an SD card or similar and load them directly into third-party apps. Currently to get an image into Lightroom, you have to first load it into Apple's Photos app.

Also likely to be mixing hardware and software is an update to Apple's Find My Friends and Find My iPhone apps. Perhaps at least because Find My iPhone now actually locates iPads, Macs, Apple Watches and AirPods too, it's being reworked. Reportedly known as "GreenTouch" within Apple, these will be combined into one app but also possibly add physical devices, similar to iBeacons or the Tile dongle.

Find My iPhone (left) and Find My Friends may be merged into one with iOS 13
Find My iPhone (left) and Find My Friends may be merged into one with iOS 13


While it's never said so publicly, Apple does seem to concentrate every other year on iOS improvements that particularly benefit the iPad and 2019 is one of those. Many such improvements also appear on the iPhone, but they're aimed at iPad users and in this case they're expected to include better multitasking options including multiple windows in an app.

There is also expected to be a Dark Mode for iOS, similar to the one Apple introduced on the Mac with macOS Mojave, and recent reported leaks have shown possible iPhone images from this feature.

And you can add new emoji faces to the list of updates that are certain to come. You can do that because emoji are not random, they are not done at Apple's whim, they are actually determined by a standards body. Apple might do them nicer than anyone else, but there is an official set and it's been added to for 2019.

Watch out

We obviously know for certain that watchOS 6 is going to be unveiled at WWDC 2019, but there's very strong evidence for a lot its forthcoming features, too.




Perhaps the most significant is that now Apple Watch apps are to get their own App Store.

It appears that Apple itself is taking advantage of this app store, too, with new health applications, an audiobooks one, and reportedly a calculator.

In theory, giving the Watch its own App Store could mean that the device is being opened up more to third-party developers, but we'll have to see. Right now you can make an Apple Watch app so long as you also make an iPhone companion to it. This is how there is already an excellent Apple Watch calculator in the form of PCalc, for instance.

If Apple does allow Watch-only apps, that would simplify development a little. However, if Apple goes further, if it truly allows third-party developers to do more, this could even be the year we see other companies providing Apple Watch faces.

That's starting to head into wishful thinking, though, and for once this year, we have more than enough detail of what is actually going to covered at WWDC to spend time speculating. One thing is certain, and that's this will be an exciting WWDC -- and health company Cardiogram plans to assess exactly how exciting by measuring heart rates during the keynote.



AppleInsider will be reporting live throughout WWDC 2019, starting with the keynote on Monday, June 3. Get every announcement as it happens by downloading the AppleInsider app for iOS, and by making sure to follow us on YouTube, Twitter @appleinsider, Facebook and Instagram.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 50
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 2,026member
    Hope someday Apple improves iMessage with Save draft text and move/re-order the last message text updated(not sent) to the top of Message list.
  • Reply 2 of 50
    I want Amazon Music on the Apple Watch......
    PetrolDave
  • Reply 3 of 50
    bsbeamerbsbeamer Posts: 30member
    I want the Mac Pro 7,1... 
    arthurba
  • Reply 4 of 50
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,989administrator
    bsbeamer said:
    I want the Mac Pro 7,1... 
    "What to expect at the 2019 WWDC from iOS 13 and watchOS 6"
    ihatescreennameschasmlollivercornchipentropys
  • Reply 5 of 50
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,742member
    I've only been using an Apple Watch for a few months now, but I'd like to see a health app on Mac OS, so that I can view all of the health data and walks, run data and maps from my Apple Watch on my Mac.
    edited May 23 StrangeDaysalbegarcjeffythequickGeorgeBMacsteveaucornchippscooter63ElCapitan
  • Reply 6 of 50
    iOS_Guy80iOS_Guy80 Posts: 252member
    The WWDC Keynote is the best 2 hours of the year if you are an Apple geek.
    wonkothesanelolliversportyguy209tmaySiliconUnicornWallax
  • Reply 7 of 50
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 8,784member
    wood1208 said:
    Hope someday Apple improves iMessage with Save draft text and move/re-order the last message text updated(not sent) to the top of Message list.
    Meh. It auto-saves now for existing conversations. Adding a folder in Messages for Drafts, which is limited only to new messages without a recipient, seems unnecessary. i don’t miss those folders from the old pre-smartphone SMS days.
    lolliverpscooter63
  • Reply 8 of 50
    iOS_Guy80 said:
    The WWDC Keynote is the best 2 hours of the year if you are an Apple geek.
    Not if they fill it with crap like new emoji or endless drivel about Music. I’ve had enough “buttery smooth” blather to last a lifetime.
    sportyguy209arthurbacanukstormYvLyElCapitan
  • Reply 9 of 50
    entropysentropys Posts: 1,893member
    While it's never said so publicly, Apple does seem to concentrate every other year on iOS improvements that particularly benefit the iPad and 2019 is one of those. Many such improvements also appear on the iPhone, but they're aimed at iPad users and in this case they're expected to include better multitasking options including multiple windows in an app
    Tabs might be better on the small iPad screen. Multi windowing across apps does could also be better as it is a bit clunky atm.  The thing most needed in the workplace though is a true file manager, Files and its cloud service orientation doesn’t cut it. 
    arthurba
  • Reply 10 of 50
    DAalsethDAalseth Posts: 763member
    Sadly nothing about mouse support on the iPad. I've come around to liking the idea of attaching an iPad to an external monitor and using a mouse.
  • Reply 11 of 50
    swat671swat671 Posts: 24member
    One thing I’d like to see is Health syncing, so I could, say, pull up health data from the iPhone on the Mac, or an iPad, etc. The current  iPod touch has an A8 chip with an M8 motion coprocessor. I’d like to be able to sync that data back to my iPhone. Same if I’m walking around with an iPad that has an M motion chip. I'd also like better Health Records support, and more health groups supporting it. Maybe make it so that if your medical group doesn’t support it, you can export your records, and import them into Health. 
    arthurba
  • Reply 12 of 50
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,742member
    DAalseth said:
    Sadly nothing about mouse support on the iPad. I've come around to liking the idea of attaching an iPad to an external monitor and using a mouse.
    I hope that they never add that. It should be forbidden forever.
    lolliver2old4funmacpluspluspscooter63
  • Reply 13 of 50
    kestralkestral Posts: 262member
    Boring, like Tim Cook.
  • Reply 14 of 50
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 2,314member
    I think I'm hoping for...

    Hardware: news on the Mac Pro
    - even though I can't afford one (at least right now), it will tell me a lot about their thinking

    Software:

    iOS: basically features to make it competitive as a usable alternative to macOS

    macOS: some features or underlying improvements that shows they are serious about improving it again
    - and, that Marzipan isn't going to ruin the app ecosystem on macOS with tons of crap iOS-ports and iOS devs with bad UX habits
  • Reply 15 of 50
    chasmchasm Posts: 1,703member
    DAalseth said:
    Sadly nothing about mouse support on the iPad. I've come around to liking the idea of attaching an iPad to an external monitor and using a mouse.
    I don't see that happening, but having said that if you were running a VPN to a Mac or Windows machine, in that circumstance it would be cool to plug a USB-C mouse into your iPad Pro for ease of environment navigation.
  • Reply 16 of 50
    ttollertonttollerton Posts: 205member
    “Nothing is certain until Tim Cook steps out on stage at WWDC 2019 and says ‘Good morning.’”

    ...

    We obviously know for certain that watchOS 6 is going to be unveiled at WWDC 2019...”


    Well...which is it?  :)
    cgWerksnetmagecornchip
  • Reply 17 of 50
    mattinozmattinoz Posts: 1,149member
    I like how you talk about what is "Rumours" as though it is fact and already confirmed in someway offical by Apple.
  • Reply 18 of 50
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 2,314member
    chasm said:
    DAalseth said:
    Sadly nothing about mouse support on the iPad. I've come around to liking the idea of attaching an iPad to an external monitor and using a mouse.
    I don't see that happening, but having said that if you were running a VPN to a Mac or Windows machine, in that circumstance it would be cool to plug a USB-C mouse into your iPad Pro for ease of environment navigation.
    Well, or just using a text editor/word processor, or many other things where you have it setup in a 'laptop' like configuration. Text selection and navigation is a pain on iOS, especially when you're using a real keyboard. And, hitting touch targets when the iPad is standing up in front of you is ergonomically difficult. I actually don't see the iPad succeeding as a laptop replacement without some kind of trackpad/mouse input.
  • Reply 19 of 50
    arthurbaarthurba Posts: 108member
    Perhaps the most significant is that now Apple Watch apps are to get their own App Store. 

    I’d be willing to invest some effort into developing AW apps if the store clearly showed that the apps were designed for cellular.   I’m hoping there will be some serious improvements to the SDK at WWDC.  
     
    I've had a AWS4 Cellular since November, and I love it.   And I now rarely take the phone with me anywhere - I just wear the watch.   I’ve got like 10 app ideas for it.  

    The current crop of AW apps are mostly pretty terrible.  Most of the problems seem to stem from the old S1/S2 where the watch had to rely on the presence of the phone - so when you have the celluar version of the watch, but the watch app has not been redesigned - it still requires the phone to do anything!  


    Fingers crossed that the new app store will show that the AW Apps are designed for cellular and don't require a companion iPhone to do anything.
  • Reply 20 of 50
    robbyxrobbyx Posts: 479member
    cgWerks said:
    chasm said:
    DAalseth said:
    Sadly nothing about mouse support on the iPad. I've come around to liking the idea of attaching an iPad to an external monitor and using a mouse.
    I don't see that happening, but having said that if you were running a VPN to a Mac or Windows machine, in that circumstance it would be cool to plug a USB-C mouse into your iPad Pro for ease of environment navigation.
    Well, or just using a text editor/word processor, or many other things where you have it setup in a 'laptop' like configuration. Text selection and navigation is a pain on iOS, especially when you're using a real keyboard. And, hitting touch targets when the iPad is standing up in front of you is ergonomically difficult. I actually don't see the iPad succeeding as a laptop replacement without some kind of trackpad/mouse input.
    The iPad “mouse” already exists. It’s called the Apple Pencil.  I don’t see Apple adding a mouse and a cursor to the iPad. The iPhone and iPad are different from the traditional mouse-driven GUI because we actually touch the physical device. That’s the whole point.  It’s more “personal”. Apple hasn’t been this focused on touch to now dirty up the iPad screen with a cursor. The Pencil is the new mouse. It allows for more precision without breaking the touch paradigm. You still touch the screen, whether it’s with your finger or the Pencil. 
    2old4funmacpluspluspscooter63
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