In today’s keynote, Apple went emotional on the success of its platforms. There was a focus on how their products enable iPhone and iPad apps to change people’s lives. Blind people, children with disabilities, students and small businesses were shown in videos illustrating new opportunities to interact. The message also serves as inspiration to the developer crowd to continue innovate and find new ways of enabling users to use Apple products.
The big news today is the new Mac Book Pro. Apple clearly defines a new standard for high end notebooks. Competition will need significant time to catch up.
iOS6 gives iPhones and iPads a refresh. There is a focus on usability and integration with other Apple devices through iCloud and with the usual social media suspects. The update contains more than 200 new user features. These are my favorites:
- The phone app – You can now take control of incoming calls. Set the phone in “Do Not Disturb” and allow only your favorite contacts to pass through. You can also choose to not answer, and have the phone remind you to call back or send the caller a message.
- Facebook integration – Facebook gets integrated into the iPhone core. Share photos, links, locations, iTunes and App Store items.
- Passbook – the new Passbook app consolidates tickets, boarding passes, coupons etc into one single place. This will definitely make the phone more usable in mobile commerce scenarios. Expect airlines and merchants to include this feature in new updates.
- Safari enhancements – The browser gets a “Smart App” feature. The site can define an app link that is shown, informing the user that there is an app to use instead of the web. In fact, the integration can even take into account where the user is on the site, enabling the app to show the relevant view if launched.
- FaceTime – You can now make FaceTime calls using 3G. Before iOS this was only possible on WiFi networks.
Now, conference is started. My focus will be to learn more about Apple’s enterprise functions. The iPhones and iPads are no longer just consumer devices, but more and more important enterprise tools. Enterprise App Stores, security, device administration and so on, are needs that Apple needs to address stronger than it has so far.
… and I will keep you updated on the blog and Twitter feed on what takes place over here.