Big Improvements Coming to Apple’s Platforms after WWDC

CotingaSoft and Hop & Jaunt welcome other Apple fans to a WWDC 2014 keynote viewing.

CotingaSoft and Hop & Jaunt welcome other Apple fans to a WWDC 2014 keynote viewing.

Apple held its annual World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC) earlier this week. We gathered a few fellow enthusiasts at our office and watched the keynote live stream. Although new iPhones, iPads, or the much-rumored iWatch did not make an appearance, what Apple did introduce were significant improvements to their existing software platforms and new features that will change the way you interact with your favorite devices.

This year Apple focused on enhancing the iOS and OS X experiences with particular emphasis on improving productivity. Whether you’re an entrepreneur, small business owner, a VP in a large corporation, or the average consumer, there are many reasons for you to be excited about what’s coming.

We can’t wait to start building new software for Apple’s platforms and here’s why:

iOS 8

The new features of iOS 8 made it clear that 7 was more than just a redesign to placate the critics. It was a steppingstone toward iOS 8’s efficiency-focused features. The new mobile operating system is targeted for a fall release and will be a free upgrade. The list of improvements is long, so here are highlights we think you need to know about:


Apple wants you to get stuff done. Continuity tools will make jumping between your Apple devices easier than ever. AirDrop will let you instantly share documents, photos, and videos between your iOS and Mac devices. With Handoff, you can seamlessly transfer your inprogress work from your desktop to your mobile device and back. Just start an email on your Mac and finish it on your iPhone without having to do anything to make it sync. These tools will automatically work with many of Apple’s built in apps, but developers can build the same functionality into their own products too.


Apps have existed in their own individual silos since the beginning, and interactions between them have been limited. App Extensions let apps collaborate with each other. Now they’ll have access to even more rich data and reduce the constant switching between apps. It also allows apps to add widgets to the Notification Center (that’s when you pull down from the top of your screen), essentially making third party apps first class citizens like Apple’s.

HealthKit & HomeKit

Apple built on Extensibility’s integration theme and introduced the HealthKit and HomeKit frameworks.

The HealthKit framework will let developers share the data they are tracking with other apps. As an example, your fitness app can use the data that your pedometer collected to craft more personalized workouts. Health, a new system app in iOS 8, works as a dashboard that collects data across other health apps and provides a unified view for them.

HomeKit provides iOS developers with a framework to discover and control third-party devices such as lights, locks, switches, thermostats, etc. Users will even be able to give Siri commands to make the adjustments.


The biggest surprise for developers, like us, is the new programming language for Apple’s platforms called Swift. Until now, developers had to rely on a language developed in the 80’s that required an intricate understanding of programming and computers. Swift’s modern approach looks like it will remove many common Apple development headaches. That should mean faster development that delivers better software. The ease of Swift may also welcome new developers to the platform that are familiar with other similar languages. And that means even more apps.

New App Store Features

With so many apps in the App Store these days–1.2 million according to Apple–finding what you’re looking for can be difficult. Apple hopes to solve this with new exploration features, including more subcategories, trending searches, and app preview videos. All of these are welcome improvements for anyone in the app business.

Mac OS X Yosemite

The Mac operating system is right on schedule with a free update coming this fall. Its most obvious update is a significant visual redesign that brings it closer to the look of recent iOS versions. The similarity extends beyond the visuals with many of iOS’ new features geared to integrate with OS X. If iOS and Mac OS X play together as well as they appear to, the future of products like iWatch and a new Apple TV may be more powerful than anticipated.

Much More

You can watch the full keynote {} and see everything we mentioned above in action plus the other announcements. Our team already has exciting ideas on how to take advantage of these updates. We’d love to hear your’s as well. Comment below or tweet us @CotingaSoft.