The big day has come! WWDC 2012 is here, with all the announcements that were expected, from Tim Cook and co. The majority of rumors were spot on, with 99% of them being real, from deeper Facebook integration in iOS 6.0 to Siri on iPad. Apple also announced a bunch of new MacBooks and iMacs and one of the MacBooks even features a Retina Display. The new iOS was the highlight of the event, though…
Siri is now able to activate applications and enter them and it’s scheduled to arrive on the New iPad this fall. The same virtual assistant has evolved and now offers restaurant and movie listings, with trailers, Rotten Tomatoes integration and the ability to see restaurant reviews. You can also ask questions about sports, comparisons between athletes and find out the times when the competitions take place. iOS 5.0 brought deeper Twitter integration and now Facebook is greatly integrated in iOS 6.0, beinge present in virtually every aspect of the platform.
You can post to Facebook from Maps, Photos and there’s even a strong integration in the Notification Center. Facebook is also supported by Siri and the APIs that Apple will offer will cater to that functionality. You will be able to post Facebook updates from any corner of iOS and from any available app, apparently. You can also use FB in the App Store and Like applications, plus see what apps your friends like. Apple also teased a feature called Eye Free, that allows one to use Siri in the car and activate certain features using a button on the steering wheel. They’ll work with big car makers on that, apparently.
Also, know that Siri got support for loads of new languages, from Italian to Mandarin, Cantonese and Korean. Facetime also evolved, so it doesn’t depend on WiFi anymore, allowing videocalls via cellular connection. An app called Passbook was also unveiled, as your one stop area for coupons, train tickets, plane tickets, Starbucks coupon, movie tickets and all those things you usually store in a wallet. We also get in app purchases and a feature called Do Not Disturb, that makes notifications and the phone’s general activity more discrete in business meetings and such occasions.
The main event of the evening was the unveiling of the Maps app, that replaces Google Maps. It lists over 100 landmarks and points of interests/businesses on the map, brings 3D graphics and a local search that’s much more evolved than what we knew before. You can also check out the traffic with special indicators and pointers and you get turn by turn navigation with Siri support. Flyover is a feature that allows you to 3D virtual models of all buildings and landmarks in an area, allowing the user to view vectorial models of real buildings. The new Maps will debut with iOS 6.0 this fall and although the novelty seems impressive, it’s not that big of a deal, since it doesn’t change the way we use iOS in a great way.
By the end of the month we’ll know if Microsoft has an answer for iOS 6.0 through Windows Phone 8, that will be shown on June 20th and also there’s Google I/O at the end of the month, with an Android Jellybean presentation.