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10 Apple announcements at WWDC 2015 that you’ll want to know

Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference kicked off today in San Francisco, and the company had tons of announcements to share with the world. Highlights from this year’s Worldwide Developer Conference include OS X 10.11, aka El Capitan, transit directions in Maps, the newly renamed Wallet, and Apple announced its new music streaming service, Apple Music. We’ve compiled a roundup of everything you need to know from Apple’s 2015 WWDC keynote.

Mac’s latest operating system: OS X El Capitan

Apple announced the latest version of its Mac operating system: OS X El Capitan. Apple senior vice president Craig Federighi took the stage to debut the new OS, which focuses on extending battery life, improving performance and increasing security. Federighi also demonstrated a few new gestures in Mail, including new swiping gestures that let users swipe to delete or mark emails as new.

He then moved to Safari, which shows how users can pin tabs within the browser, giving them the ability to pre-load them when the browser re-opens. El Capitan lets users drag windows from the sides of their desktop, which will help fill unused space.

When it comes to performance, Apple said it will be much faster opening up apps and PDF files in the Preview app. Apple is also bringing Metal, which was first introduced on iOS last year, to the Mac. Federighi claims that performance will be 10x faster on the desktop, and Epic Games demonstrated low-level graphics with a tease of its upcoming co-op game, Fortnight. El Capitan is available to developers starting today. There will be a public beta in July and it will roll out to everyone in autumn as a free upgrade.

Read more here.

Apple Pay supports rewards cards, Passbook is renamed to Wallet

Apple introduced some updates to its Apple Pay service at the WWDC conference in San Francisco. Besides being able to add your debit and credit cards, Apple Pay lets you add store cards and rewards cards. Thanks to PassBook, the Apple Pay will know which card you need when you’re shopping.

Some of the first retailers include Kohl’s, JC Penny and BJ’s. Walgreen and Dunkin Donuts will bring rewards cards to the new Apple Pay platform. “We will launch with eight of the most popular banks, more coming this fall,” Apple’s Jennifer Bailey said.

And, last but not least, the company has decided to rename the Passbook app to Wallet as a means of consolidating its brands.

Read more here.

Apple Maps will include Transit directions

iOS 9 will now provide Apple Maps users with public transit directions, which covers bus, ferry, subway and train routes. It will launch in cities including Baltimore, Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Washington DC. Transit directions will also be available in London, Toronto, and Berlin. Other features include step-by-step directions, walking times and the ability to look up different transit options at different stations. Federighi said that Apple Maps is currently serving 5 billion user requests per week.

Read more here.

Move over Google Now, here comes Apple’s Proactive Assistant

Apple announced ‘Proactive’ assistant today, which will compete against Google Now, and will be available with iOS 9. With Proactive, Apple will be able to tell you when you can leave for the airport, based on events in your calendar or stored in Passbook. The proactive assistant will also tell you which apps you use often, and will show you recommendations for new restaurants you should check out when it’s time to eat dinner. The new tool will also provide breaking news and links that send you right to the apps they came from.

Read more here.

Apple is open-sourcing Swift, its new programming language

Swift 2

Apple senior vice president Craig Federighi announced today the company is open-sourcing Swift, the programming language it debuted last year. Based on the crowds reaction at WWDC 2015, you could tell this is a pretty big deal for iOS developers. By open sourcing Swift, developers will have a lot more freedom when it comes to building new applications.

Read more here.

Apple’s App Store has passed 100 billion app downloads


At this years WWDC 2015, Tim Cook didn’t give stat updates, but he recently announced that the App Store has reached more than 100 billion app downloads. He also said that the company has paid out $30 billion to developers. “We could not be more proud of the work that you’re doing,” CEO Tim Cook told the audience. Every second, there are more than 850 apps downloaded, and the average person has at least 120 applications downloaded onto their mobile device.

Apple debuts News app

At its WWDC keynote, Apple announced a new app called News, which looks similar to Facebook’s Instant Articles and Flipboard. Participating publications including the New York Times, Wired and ESPN will be publishing content to the new platform. Similar to Flipboard, Apple’s news app will be able to pull content from around the web and present it to users in a magazine-style format.

Read more here.

Apple launches streaming music service

Apple Music features a 24/7 live global radio station called Beats 1, which broadcasts from California, New York and London. Beats co-founder Jimmy Lovine said that Apple Music is meant to “benefit customers and artists alike.” The service has a featured called Connect that lets artists connect and interact with their friends. Apple Music will launch on June 30 and will cost $9.99 a month. If you buy a family pass for six users, the music streaming service will cost $14.99.

Read more here.

CarPlay can now wirelessly connect to your iPhone

CarPlay can now wirelessly connect to your iPhone

At WWDC today, Apple’s Craig Federighi announced a ton of new features for CarPla, including a new wireless mode, so you don’t have to worry about plugging in your phone once you get in your car. It will also support apps from automakers so you can control features that come with the car through CarPlay. At this time, no cars support wireless mode, so it will be something to look forward to in future models. Apple also said that it is making CarPlay dashboards in different types and sizes, including HiDPI screens.

Read more here.

iOS 9 and WatchOS 2 are coming

Along with iOS 9, Apple announced that WatchOS 2 is coming to the Apple Watch. It features some different options for watch faces, which includes “Time Travel,” that notifies you of upcoming events in addition to what’s currently going on. Developers have also been given a ton of new tools that will allow them to build apps that can live on the watch, which means you won’t need your phone as often. Aside from the better Siri that we talked about earlier, the new News app, and upgraded Maps app, Apple is also giving the Notes app a refresh with a few new features, like the ability to draw in notes. The public beta of iOS 9 will be available in July, and the full update will become available in the fall, along with WatchOS 2. Apple says iOS 9 will work on any device that supports iOS 8.

Read more here.

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Karen Tumbokon
Karen is a technology, music and entertainment writer. Originally from New Jersey, Karen began her writing career in music…
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