Tomorrow evening (UK time) sees another WWDC keynote from Apple and, inevitably, lots of news about their various operating systems.
I typically enjoy these keynotes, as there’s usually no hardware announcements and so, no temptation to splurge on new technology that I don’t actually need.
However, as has become the norm for recent WWDC announcements, I find myself flying while the keynote is taking place. So I’ll land at London City Airport and frantically scroll through trusted twitter sources to get the gist of what I’ve missed.
In no particular order, here are a few things I’d like Apple to take care of tomorrow – I’m quite sure Tim Cook reads this blog (why wouldn’t he?!) so I full expect them to be delivered in full:
Apple Notes to get some love
I’ve recently moved all of my personal note-taking from Evernote to Apple’s own Notes app. I haven’t looked back – but there’s still room for improvement. I’d like to be able to set a reminder for a note (like Evernote does), get a unique link for a note to share to other apps (like Evernote does) but retain speed and pared down interface, where Evernote has spectacularly failed. I’d love to see it become a more professional app, while remaining accessible and easy to use.
General Siri improvements
I’ve moved from being a Siri-hater to someone who uses it very regularly – but only for the simplest of activities. We’re an Alexa household when it comes to home automation, so Siri has been related to reminding me of quick errands or timers for cooking. I’m not confident enough to use it for anything more complex or involved as it so regularly fails to understand me. I’m hoping Apple have been slaving away in the background to bring Siri up to Alexa-standard comprehension and general helpfulness. Otherwise Siri is going to be left reminding me to turn off the oven.
Full desktop Safari on the iPad
I’m an iPad Pro lover and do more and more of my work on the device. Sometimes, I never forget where I’ve put my MacBook, as it’s used to infrequently. That said, life is still tough on the iPad from time to time, including when you want to do anything involving a complex website. Safari on the iPad isn’t up to it in many cases and I end up going to an iMac or MacBook out of sheer frustration. I’d like the same Safari on all my devices. I don’t think that’s a crazy request, to be honest.
An update to the desktop on iPad
iOS means the desktop on iPhones and iPads of all sizes is pretty much identical. A grid of apps, set out on a series of screens. I’d really like Apple to differentiate the iPads in this regard and allow for more customisation. On-screen widgets, for example. My iPad Pro’s 11 inch screen has endless possibilities for productivity and I think the apps grid has outlived its usefulness.
Ability to access external storage from the iPad
Another iPad request! With such a powerful computer, featuring a USB-C port, why can’t I plug in external storage (e.g. a USB memory key) and access the files? Yes, it’ll important photos, but only to my Photos app. I want to be able to get my hands on files and other resources someone might want to give me in an unconnected environment, where sending by email just isn’t convenient. USB-C is plenty powerful enough. So I think this is an Apple ‘philosophy’ thing. Just like when using a stylus was verboten – yet now they’ll sell you an Apple Pencil for £100.
Apple Mail to catch up with gMail
Despite all the alternatives available on both MacOS and iOS, I’ve stuck with the built-in Mail app. It’s solid and reliable, but is beginning to show its age in terms of functionality. I’d like some automated sorting of my mail, like gMail does. I’d like to write an email and have it be sent at a specific time in the future. I’d like to access out of office for all accounts more easily. Some simple enough features that you can find in a plethora of other email apps.
I know there have been various leaks about the death of iTunes and its replacement with new music, podcast and movies apps. It doesn’t really interest me as I avoid iTunes like the plague. I only ever open it up to access language courses I ripped from CDs.
There have also been rumours about upgrades to the Reminders app. From what I’ve seen, it’s not going to replace ToDoist for me, so I’m not too bothered. But let’s see what shows up on the day.
It sounds like Dark Mode is coming to the iPhone, which will be super exciting for the people who’ve been screaming for it for years. I think it’s a nice to have, but I won’t take to my fainting couch if it doesn’t show up tomorrow evening.