Apps

18 Highlights from WWDC 2018 Keynote

The biggest announcements from Apple’s major developer show

Published

on

Today’s two and a half hour long Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) keynote was jam packed with announcements that give us a taste of what using an iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, Apple TV, or Mac will be like in the year to come.

Here are all the highlights condensed into 18 bitesized bits.

1. New Animoji can do more

Apple adds four new Animoji characters to iOS 12: ghost, koala, tiger, and T-rex. But the fun doesn’t stop there, all 20 Animoji can now detect winks and tongue movement, so if you stick out your tongue, your Animoji will do so too!

2. Me, me, MeMoji

If that’s not enough, you can also turn yourself into your own Animoji character. They call it MeMoji, and from what we’ve seen, it’s much better than Samsung’s own AR Emoji attempt on the Galaxy S9. You get plenty of customization options to ensure that it creates a close cartoony match.

3. Shortcut me Siri!

Siri may not necessarily be getting smarter, but is definitely getting more useful. With something called Siri shortcuts, you can create your own voice commands for Siri to carry out tasks. For example, you can say, “I’m coming home” and Siri will then proceed to turn on your air conditioning at home, turn on navigation, and launch Audible so you can listen to a book on the commute home.

4. FaceTime Calls, the more the merrier

Ever wished you could group FaceTime? On iOS 12, you’ll be able to do just that, from two people all the way up to 32. When several people are on a call, the interface looks rather quirky, with several floating boxes with faces. When someone speaks, his or her box becomes the biggest one on the screen. Of course, all your friends will need to own an iPhone, iPad, or Mac to join in on the fun.

5. Google Maps on CarPlay

If Apple Maps is not your navigation app of choice, that’s okay. CarPlay now supports third-party apps like Google Maps and Waze.

6. More or less screen time?

Looks like the effort to strike a balance between using our devices and enjoying the real world is an industry shift. After Google talked about Digital Wellbeing features in Android P at Google I/O last month, Apple is doing the same here at WWDC with what it calls ScreenTime.

Activity Reports lets you monitor how much time you spend on apps, and then sets limits if you feel like you’re on Instagram too much, for example. It’ll warn you as you get close to the allowed time, and when your time is up, it locks you out. You have full control and can get back in with a few clicks but the added steps is supposed to help you learn the discipline of stepping away form big attention-sucking black holes.

The feature isn’t just for adults, but also a great way for parents to understand where their children spend the most time. The app lets parents monitor their children’s app usage, and gives them the ability to assigning limits also.

New Do Not Disturb features also help get notifications under control and out of the way.

7. LEGO like never before

Apple’s been working on developments to its augmented reality platform and to showcase this, they are shipping an app called Measure that can measure objects in the real world. There’s also a new LEGO app that lets you play with physical sets and merge them with digital sets and characters. And finally, there’s a game called Swift Shot, the first multiplayer AR game of its kind.

8. Walkie Talkie

Apple Watch gets a whole bunch of updates including a new WalkieTalkie app.

9. Wear it with Pride

As a bonus, Apple is bringing back the Pride watch band with an updated design. This new limited edition strap is available starting today and it matches the Pride watch face that just rolled out to celebrate Pride month.

10. WebKit Integration

Apple Watch gets WebKit integration, meaning you can now read full emails and web pages from your watch.

11. Surround me with sound

Apple TV 4K now supports Dolby Atmos (apart from Dolby Vision) so you get can get surround sound audio in your home with supported sound bars. Existing content will be updated and you get free updates for movies you already own.

12. Breathtaking views from outer space

Jen Folse shows new tvOS 12 aerial screensaver features on Apple TV 4K, including aerials shot from space by NASA astronauts aboard the International Space Station. | Apple Newsroom

Apple TV owners have become fond of aerial flyovers over scenic spots. Have you ever wondered where those places were? I have, and now with a short press on your remote, you can find out. There are also new aerials featuring the earth shot from the international Space Station. Stunning!

13. The next version of macOS will be called…

The cat’s out of the bag, and nope it’s not a cat. The next version of macOS will be called Mojave, named after the Mojave Desert in California.

14. A taste of the dark side

To give the new operating system a fresh look, macOS Mojave will come with an optional, high-contrast dark mode that should make it easier to focus on your content.

15. De-clutter your desktop

If you’re like me and have a desktop that’s peppered with icons everywhere, you’ll like a new feature called Stacks, that as its name implies stacks similar apps on top of each other on the home screen. You can sort by file type, date, or tags you assign. Speaking of desktop, there’s a new Mojave Desert wallpaper that changes to match the time of day.

16. No, you can’t Facebook

Privacy is a big issue in today’s world and in a subtle jab at Facebook, Apple says macOS will shut down apps and services that track your activity. Safari will now alert users for their permission whenever Facebook attempts to track a user’s online activity.

17. iOS apps on macOS

Many have asked if Apple was merging iOS and macOS at some point, and the answer is a resounding No. But it is working on helping developers bring iOS apps to the Mac starting with their own apps, News, Stocks, Voice Memos, and Home.

18. Redesigned App Store

Speaking of apps, there’s a redesigned Mac App Store that’s aimed at making it easier to find new apps. The new desktop App Store will follow the lead of the new iOS App Store, with editorial content that will highlight the best apps the store has to offer, like Microsoft Office 365 which is coming to the App Store real soon.

Apps

Canva adds new features for presentations on the go

Responsive presentations anytime, anywhere

Published

on

Having a well-designed document goes a long way in engaging your audience. That’s where Canva comes in, simplifying the creation of well-thought documents, posters, and more. Now, Canva is adding more features which would delight presenters on the go.

The first feature is responsive presentation — users can now create presentations on their laptops and view it on their mobile devices. Presentations adapt to different screens, so the days of fussing over the right screen size is over. Plus, users can edit and view presentations made with Canva anywhere, anytime.

The second feature is presentations playlist, which would suit well for team presentations. With this feature, teams can create accessible spaces for collaboration through shared folders. This feature also builds a single coherent event with transitional slides introducing each speaker.

Lastly, there is live Q&A, which Canva will add to its mobile apps soon. Audiences will be able to participate in from any device and have the option to send in questions anonymously. This should enable a more dynamic and engaging presentation with audiences.

With over a thousand designer-made templates, 50 million premium images and videos, Canva makes it easier to create beautiful documents, posters, and graphic materials. It is available on the web, on Android, and iOS devices. Users can sign up today for a free tier, with a premium tier also available to unlock more features.

SEE ALSO: 10 free apps to improve your Instagram stories

Continue Reading

Apps

Spotify releases the 2019 wrapped, here’s how you can see it

Find out your guilty music pleasures

Published

on

Every December, Spotify releases the much-awaited “Spotify Wrapped,” where users find out their top songs of the year. Since this year and this decade is ending, Spotify added a different twist in this year’s wrap-up.

The 2019 Wrapped will include songs, albums, artists, and podcasts you listened to throughout the year, and the artists you listened to the most throughout the decade. When I saw my wrap-up, I found it funny how I listen to the same songs every year. Spotify knows what songs we obsess over.

Furthermore, Spotify highlights the places where your top artists hail from through a world map. Additionally, podcasts are added to the “Wrapped” experience.

Spotify Wrapped 2019 showcasing your top artist of the year.

Spotify users, particularly those who were subscribed to a premium subscription, get a personalized recap, too. Some insights include a user’s top artist every year and the number of minutes they streamed music throughout the decade. Premium users also get info on the artist they vibed most with this year.

Luckily, your personalized info can be shared through Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, or Facebook. To access your “Spotify Wrapped,” make sure to update your Spotify app and open it or head to Spotify.com/wrapped. Enjoy looking back!

Continue Reading

Apps

Lazada launches ‘digital giving’ platform LazadaForGood

Spread the love, not just for the holidays

Published

on

Lazada’s 12.12 Grand Year End Sale is just around the corner but the company is also giving you another option to spend your hard-earned cash. It’s one that will give you warm fuzzy feelings inside.

Launched alongside the announcement of their massive year-end sale, Lazada partnered with 11 local and international advocacy partners: Habitat for Humanity, Young Focus, Caritas Manila, MovEd, UNHCR, HEro Foundation Inc., UNICEF, WWF, Tahanan ng Pagmamahal, HOPE, and CCEF.

The digital giving platform won’t just be available for Christmas, it will be a permanent fixture on the Lazada app. This means you can give love 24/7 and 365 days a year.

To donate, simply open the Lazada app, hit Load, Bills, & eCoupon, then click on Donation. The list of the advocacy partners will be there.

Lazada’s 12.12 Grand Year End Sale

Of course, we can’t forget the grand year end sale is indeed happening. Up to 90 percent off on more than 12 million deals will be available. Expect great offers and discounts from Xiaomi, Olay, FitFlop, Pampers, Hydro Flask, Wyeth, LEGO, Apple, Jansport, Coocaa, Tefal, and Reebok.

Continue Reading

Trending