There is a strange feeling in some parts of the Mac community that the platform is the best manifestation of software. Never There was a snow leopard. Yes, that’s right you can now become known as a Mac OS X 10.6 of 2009, a release that was famously marketed as focusing on “zero new features” and bug fixes and enhancements.
That assessment is certainly open to debate, but the notion survives long enough that some people still regularly call for the release of Apple’s current operating systems “Snow Leopard” style – although I’m sure there will be a general cry. Kill if the company tries to release an update that wasn’t really a new feature.
Such an update is not exactly what we received at this week’s Global Developers Conference: the platform updates that Apple has shown are full of fairly new features. But going down the list, it also became clear that it was a bit of a search and destroy exercise for Apple’s engineers, as they surpassed the entire metric ton of requests and “missing” features that in some cases have been long overdue. For years.
These updates may be like the “fill in the blanks” release, but in any case, there’s a lot that suggests that Apple is not just trying to figure out what’s next, but also trying to fix what came before and level the playing field across all its platforms.
Fill in the blanks
Incidentally: Although the first iPhone was shipped with a Weather app, no similar program has ever been seen on the iPad. Or Mac-so far. Twelve years after the tablet’s release, Apple has finally decided to bring Weather to the iPad and Mac, thanks in part to the acquisition of the Weather app / service Dark Sky in 2020. Similarly, the Mac also acquired a Clock app, which previously existed on the iPad and iPhone, as well as the Siri command to set a timer.
While the addition of the app is only positive in terms of holding hands, it also shows that Apple is putting a lot of pressure on the idea of bringing equality to its platforms. With MacOS, iPadOS, and iOS coming together (not only running most of the same code, but now running on the same built-in hardware), Apple obviously wants to be in a position to roll out new apps and features across all of them. Devices, where they make sense. (For example, Mac may not get a Wallet app anytime soon.)
Parity not only maintains experience while moving from one platform to another, but also sets the stage for future developments, making it easier to add subsequent enhancements across its various platforms – making things easier for Apple over the years.
Checking the boxes
Many of the features that Apple has added this year have been much more requested, a fact that Apple SVP Craig Federighi even mentioned on stage. Messages, for example, have the ability to mark messages as unread, not send them, and edit them. Mail has been restored and received scheduled shipments, advanced searches and snooze reminders. iCloud has finally got the shared photo library. The iPad has got advanced multitasking through Stage Manager.
Apple has shut down many long-running feature requests, filling in the gaps that often force users to switch to third-party apps (where effective alternatives existed). It may be even more brutal as Apple tries to keep people away from alternative apps, but the simplest solution is usually the right one and in this case, it actually seems to be more about relieving the frustration of users of these apps – and doing it like an Apple. The way in which features work and what users actually want (as opposed to what they often do). Tell me They want).
This year’s update doesn’t address every “missing” feature, of course (my desire to be able to use any emoji as a message tapback, for example, sadly ignored), but Apple has done an admirable job of balancing them – a whole new debut. Feature requested with.
Desktop up classing
But this year’s WWDC announcement doesn’t look more like Apple’s approach to equality than when Federichi talked about bringing “desktop-class apps” to the iPad.
This section of the app primarily refers to apps that someone interacts with via a keyboard and pointing device, such as Apple’s own Magic Keyboard, but more generally it’s a microcosm of the whole trend: filling in the gaps with what apps can do on the Mac, but still on the iPad. No. These include customizable toolbars, file menus with commonly used commands, system-wide search and replacement, and improvements in multi-selection mode.
The iPad always sits between the Mac and the iPhone, but these improvements seem to be more about separating it from the more limited environment of its iOS roots and incorporating it as a fully-fledged operating system, the equivalent of MacOS.
Of course, good intentions that such an initiative, it is somewhat denied that many of Apple’s own professional desktop apps, especially Final Cut Pro and Logic, have not yet jumped on the iPad. So it looks like, like elsewhere across Apple’s platform, there are still some gaps to fill.