4 things we learned at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference


by Editorial Staff


by Editorial Staff

The marquee Worldwide Developers Conference was the pulsing heart of San Jose’s 2019 Apple Week. Over 5,000 developers from all over the world flew to the “capital” of Silicon Valley for the unveiling of Apple’s new features ahead of the next season of product launches. Undoubtedly, an extraordinary opportunity to take pressure of an ever-growing and tireless industry.

Deltatre’s Mobile Engineer, Marco Marengo, was in California for the event, attending Tim Cook’s keynote and sharing opinions and experiences with hundreds of fellow developers. These are the four things that - among others - he brought back home to Turin. Find them below.

#1. iOS 13 and Dark Mode - a revolution is on the horizon

The highly anticipated “Dark Mode” will be at the core of the next release for iOS, which will mark its 13th annual revamp later this year. With iOS 13.0, users will be able to adopt a new system-wide appearance that uses a darker colour palette for all screens, views, menus and controls. It also uses more vibrancy, so that foreground content will stand out against darker backgrounds.

Not only will a device automatically switch to “dark” when the ambient light is low, but also people will be able to choose it as a default interface style by making a simple change in the settings. The introduction of this additional feature, which (if the sounds of the audience in the room it was announced is anything to go by) is expected to have a great impact on Apple users. Deltatre’s product teams are already working on the implications that Dark Mode will have on specific projects in our UXD work or involving our video player, Diva, on mobile. Without doubt, this feature will help make the experience of using one of our client’s services even more immersive than it has been so far, especially on mobile devices.

#2. tvOS and new weapons to succeed in the streaming wars

Apple unveiled a new streaming service earlier this year, positioning itself as a major player  in the ongoing ‘streaming war’. The newly designed home screen for tvOS is likely to have some impact on various project Deltatre is working on. Think of the creation of a whole bunch of new bits of content (i.e. video previews) to be provided to Apple to accompany specific apps.

That’s not all. Apple also introduced enhanced personalisation functionality, offering recommendations to users based on their history of content consumption and behaviour. Just another step in the journey to close the gap in a battle that still sees Netflix at the top of the hill.

Finally, Apple unveiled the new Low-Latency HLS. HTTP Live Streaming (HLS) was introduced back in 2009, enabling the delivery of live and on-demand audio and video streams on a global scale. The new low-latency mode brings latencies down to less than two seconds on public networks at scale. Backwards compatibility to existing clients is still ensured. Needless to say, this new technology will play an important role in current and future OTT projects for Deltatre.

#3. iPadOS 13 - new multitasking capabilities as a game changer?

A new version of Apple’s operating system that is due out this fall applies to iPads too. iPadOS 13.0 will feature additional features made possible by the iOS SDK, the software development kit developed by Apple that allows for the development of mobile apps on Apple's iOS operating system.

Multitasking capabilities were at the core of Cupertino’s announcements for its tablet. Functionalities like Slide Over, Split View, or Picture in Picture will open to a number of new opportunities for the user during navigation. From the point of view of a software engineer, new challenges are around the corner. A

Not to mention another piece of candy Apple will be delivering later this year: the so-called Project Catalyst. This trick - already experimented with by some companies such as Twitter - will allow the release of iPad native apps on MacOS. Another game changer in the industry, something users repeatedly asked for and that will allow developers to support an additional platform at (nearly) zero cost.

#4. Last but not least - SwiftUI

SwiftUI is Apple’s innovative way to build UIs across different platforms with the power of Swift as a coding language. For technologists, SwiftUI allows to build user interfaces for any Apple device using just one set of tools and APIs. The syntax is easy to read and even more straightforward to write. Think about a system where you can write that you want a list of items consisting of text fields, then describe alignment, font, and color for each field. You’ll be amazed by how clean and easy-to-read your code will look.

These are just a few of the takeaways from an intense week of keynotes and workshops. Apple Worldwide Developers Conference lit up the Apple Week in San Jose, and here is what our very own Marco Marengo said on his return:

It’s been one of the most interesting editions of the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference, perhaps the most insightful since 2014, when the programming language Swift was introduced. Big features were announced for software and hardware, as well as for tools specifically designed for developers. Most importantly, it’s clear how - unlike the past - Apple is very keen to listen to users’ feedback and values their comments and requests to continuously improve.

Marco Marengo


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