On June 2nd, Apple at their annual WWDC conference typically for developers gave us a glimpse into what they intend to release to the public in the coming months as it pertains to the software that runs on their hardware. As usual it was full of fanfare, rumor and excitement because everyone wants to know what Apple has up its sleeve. Apple showed off a lot of impressive things yesterday mainly the newest refreshes of OS X and iOS. I’ll discussing OS X Yosemite primarily and then I’ll cover iOS 8 exclusively.
OS X Yosemite
Last year Mac users got an upgrade from 10.8 Mountain Lion with 10.9 Mavericks and now we have the newest upgrade and probably the most drastic that I’ve seen in some time in OS X 10.10 Yosemite. OS X Yosemite is going to be making the best use of iOS integration up to this point. Apple’s design team made some overall aesthetic changes that make OS X look more like iOS as well changing the functionality to some degree to behave like an iOS device as well. It’s all about seamless integration. The feeling of what you can do on your iPhone you can do on your iPad as well as on your iMac.
OS X Yosemite is feature packed, Apple went along way to changing the experience of OS X without it losing it’s familiarity. They’ve added some great new features as well as some long overdue changes to some of their native apps. We know that Safari, Mail, Calendar for starters have all undergone major overhauls and that coupled with some of the new added features should make OS X Yosemite arguably the best OS that Apple has created up to now.
As I said Apple added some new features and updates to OS X Yosemite and I thought I’d highlight some of the best ones.
Apple has taken a flatter approach to their icon set to give it a more modern and contemporary look. Gone is the leather stitching (Thank God) and shadowing. It’s been replaced with clean lines and a simple appearance. Nothing overcomplicated
OS X has always had spotlight if you’ve ever used a Mac before and if you ever needed to find a file or anything quickly Spotlight was the way to go. Now Spotlight has gotten even more useful and intuitive using more sources of information including the internet for your general searches and earlier searches. The full list of exactly what search sources are available you can actually see in the picture.
Not much has changed with the Notification Center because it was already pretty good but apple has decided to make it translucent as well as giving you an option for a dark and light mode whichever your preference. You’ll still be able to use your calendar, messages, downloads all the same but a nice improvement visually
Of course if you revamp OS X you can surely expect a revamp of Safari. Apple’s native browser. As with all the other native apps Apple has given it a clean redesign and some different functionality but most of the noticeable changes will be in its overall appearance. Will it sway anyone away from Firefox or Chrome? That remains to be seen but still a welcome change nonetheless.
This feature is something new to iCloud but not at all new especially if you’ve used or are using Google Drive and Dropbox. Essentially this is Apple’s take on cloud based drive storage between iOS devices and your Mac. If you’re an Android user then you know how this works but for new iOS and Mac users then iCloud Drive will be a great enhancement for your existing iCloud account. Apple’s a little late to the party on this one but better late than never.
Overall, as a Mac user I was excited to see some changes albeit necessary to OS X. It makes me excited again about having a Mac and I can’t wait to get my hands on it. Apple had gotten a little boring and complacent over the past couple of years and for me I was wondering what’s next for them. Apple fanboys will argue that they never left but we’ll agree to disagree there. Either way, point is it’s good see Apple back in the mix and putting Android and Windows users back on their toes with some exciting updates and welcome changes. These are just a few of the things to be expected from OS X Yosemite and as we get closer to release in the fall I’m sure we’ll see more. Get ready