From El Capitan to the advanced features that are new in iOS 9 and Swift 2.0! Did you catch this years ‘Epicenter of Change’… Apple’s WWDC 2015?
For most mobile developers, tuning into this years Apple WWDC 2015 conference was a must! The keynote kicked off live at 3am last Tuesday here in Australia. I didn’t bother to set the alarm as my 1 year old usually wakes me up a few times in the night.. so I thought I’d just stay up after the first wake up between 1 – 3am.
I opened up Chrome on my Macbook and went to Apple’s WWDC 2015 site… and when nothing worked I remembered that the Live Streams would only work with Safari on my Macbook (unless you hacked around with VLC player or installed a dodgy extension into your alternative browser).
OSX 10.11 “El Capitan” –
The first announcement of course was the new OSX version… El Capitan ! It is available as a public beta in July and will be available to every other Mac user this Fall.
What’s New in iOS 9 –
Of course, we all wanted to hear what was new in iOS. It was stated that the current iOS 8 release has an adoption rate of 83% for active iOS devices. As a developer this is important since you can have confidence that if you are using API features related to iOS 8, the majority of users will have a seamless user experience.
Source: App Store Developer Support
With the WWDC 2015 announcement of iOS 9, the prominent user features that have been baked-in include:
- More intelligence built into Siri with natural language support for Search
- Apple Pay (in select Countries)
- Enhancements to the Notes and Maps apps
- A brand new News app
- Productivity features for iPad such as Multi-tasking split screen and QuickType
- Performance, security and power saving enhancements to the iOS foundation
Source: WWDC 2015 Presentation
Another great benefit for iOS developers is the fact that iOS 9 will be available on all devices that supported iOS 8, which include –
Source: iOS 9 Preview
Again, this means that the new API features implemented in iOS can be adopted by a strong majority of active iOS users when the public upgrade to iOS 9 arrives this Fall. The enhancement to the iOS foundation means that the upgrade size will only be 1.3 GB, compared to the 4.58 GB upgrade to iOS 8.
New in iOS 9: Game Dev APIs –
Next, lets turn to some of these new API features as part of the newest developer release. For game developers, Apple has now expanded the feature set of –
to include the 3 new kit releases called –
- GameplayKit – which brings Ai concepts of path planning and obstacle avoidance for easy implementation in your game
- Model I/O – used to provided attractive lighting, materials and textures on your game 3D models
- ReplayKit – to allow users to record their game play and then share it
Source: WWDC 2015 Presentation
Swift 2.0 and Open Source Announcement –
One of the most important things for developers both new and experienced was the surprise announcement that Apple will be rolling out the compilers and standard libraries as Open Source near the end of this year!
The Swift language now goes to version 2.0 and Craig Federighi mentioned that they want Swift to be the language of choice for developers over the next 20 years. It is a great programming language for beginners and experience devs alike.
Catch up on all the recorded WWDC 2015 videos –
Fire up Safari and head over to the Apple Developer WWDC 2015 site where you can watch or download (MP4) all the recorded sessions for this years premier mobile developer event!
What was your favourite part of WWDC 2015?
Feel free to leave us a comment or some feedback.
The year is basically half over.. check out the List of Top Dev Conferences for 2015 to schedule yourself in for the next major Dev event!