Virtually live from Apple’s WWDC 21 (video)

WWDC 21 has come and gone with no new MacBook Pros. So much for the major news outlets and big-name analysts who made book on their debut.

Wall Street took it well; the stock price hardly moved during the nearly 2 hour show.

Otherwise, as predicted, the faithful were treated with new versions of all five operating systems with added features I’m not going to try to summarize.

Phil Schiller testified in the Epic trial that Apple can spend $50 million putting on a WWDC. I’ve been to WWDCs that could easily have cost $50 million. This was not one of them.

For those who missed it, here’s the YouTube:

Below: My notes, all times eastern. 

2:44 Back to Tim. “What a big day.” All OS releases available in beta today, public beta next month. Sounds like a wrap up without any new hardware. And that’s a wrap.

2:42 Xcode Cloud. For automated tests. Test Flight for working with tester teams. TestFlight comes to Mac too.

2:39 App Store Ann. Safe and trusted place. 600 million weekly visitors. $230 billion to developers. Easy ways to do A and B tests on your apps.

In-App events. Front and center on the App Store. Curated by “our experts” human or AI not specified.

2:37 Ted on Swift. Big new feature: Concurrency.

2:34 Susan Prescott. APIs. Swift features. App Store features. This is a quick preview for developers, not for citizens like me. Like Object Capture. Fast 3D object creation. Majorty of top 1000 apps built on Swift.

2:34 New developer features.

2:33 End Mac OS Monterey. Summary.

2:31 Tab bar on iPhone on the bottom. Extensions. Share code in ways I don’t understand.

2:29 Beth Safari tab design. I’m going to have forgotten all this by next fall when it’s available.

2:20 Craig MacOS Monterey. All the stuff you heard about on iPad, now on Mac. Plus… Continuity. Universal Control. Mouse on both iPad and Mac? Drag and drop between devices.

AirPlay to Mac. ShortCuts to the Mac. Safari. [Call the editor: He just mentioned a MacBook Pro with M1. An unreleased product!]

2:15 The Home. Yah (his name). Watching TV together. Homepod Mini as speaker. (Not the big HomePod?) Matter new standard. See who’s at your door on your watch.

2:14 Kevin summary, back to Craig.

2:11 Kevin. Photo face is the most popular So they add features to that. Shandra Photos app improvements. More Memories!

2:08 Kevin watchOS 8  Breath app. Reflect. Gentle, trippy animation. Mindfulness. Sleep respitory rate.

Julz: Workouts. Tai Chi. Pilates. A new star workout woman. Artist spotlight music.

2:03. Lab results come with detailed descriptions in Health App. Trends: Long term changes.

Securely share data with your doctor. (I assumed it was already doing that.) 6 partners so far. Family sharing as well. Would have been good for my aging parents in the last years.

2:01 Fall risk. Walking Steadiness. Built on data from 100,000 participants (!).

1:57 Sumbul … Health. Doctors confusing patients. Story of going to Cupertino to develop this new Apple Watch app and clinical trials. Saved a lot of lives. Made me cry just a little.

1:53 iCloud+ Mike with updates. Recovery contact list if you forget your password.

Digital legacy. Add people who can get access to your devices after you die.

Private Relay. Browse Safari untrackably.

HIde my email. Set up face email addresses on the fly. Who is the market for this?

1:50 Katie and Eric. Mail privacy protection. Hides ip address. Safari also hides ip address. App privacy report will highlight apps that track you most aggressively. Fun!

Siri: New voices. blah. On-device speech recognition. So no unwanted audio recording. f

1:49 Privacy. A lot of Craig today! Privacy labels and ATT.

1:47 Swift playgrounds. Learn to code tool now used for building apps. Submit to App Store. Good luck with that.

1:46 Translate comes to iPad. Autotranslate. Good for negotiating with a taxi driver.

1:44 Notes. Shared notes. Tags. Tag browser. Quicknote. Integrated to Apple’s apps. Yelp is in the demo. Other third parties?

1:42 Shuban (?) Multitasking, spit view, etc. I will use none of this.

1:38 Craig iPadOS 15. Widgets. “This is a huge deal” hmm. App library. Multitasking.

1:35 Gagan on AirPods. Conversation boost. Not calling them hearing aids without FDA approval. Improved find my. Much needed, Notification when you leave without. Only Apple. Spacial audio. Somehow I’ve yet to hear this.

1:30 Apple Maps from Meg. 8-10 countries. More details in selected cities to catch up to Google Maps. Very San Fran centric demo. Transit improvements long overdue, IMO. AR tour de force in city navigation. Don’t hold your breath in Western Mass.

1:29 Weather app updates. “gorgeous animated backgrounds” sounds like make work.

1:26 Jennifer on Wallet. Car keys? When for my Prius? Hotel keys at Hyatt this fall. 25 partners so far. This fall scan Drivers License in some states.

1:24 Chelsea on Memories. Is this a solution to a nonexistent need?

1:23 Spotlight search of photos looks useful. I can think of many times when it would have saved tons of time.

1:21 Live text from camera. Neat. Is this Apple catching up to Google. I plead ignorance.

1:16 Back to Craig. Focus. Treatments for info overload. Notification summary. To catch up, ordered by priority. This is Apple trying to clean up a mess it created. Focus and intelligence. What’s not to love?

1:14 Mindy on what’s new in Messages. Shared With You section in News, Apple TV, Music, Photos, etc.

1:05 Over to Craig Federighi… iOS 15. Features coming…

Stay connected: Video calling improvements on FaceTime, which was clobbered by Zoom last year. Spacial audio to make conversation sound more natural and comfortable.

Voice isolation. Prioritize your voice. Demo looked good.

Wide spectrum. Pick up everything.

Gridview (like Zoom) also fuzzy background (ditto)

Facetime link: Browser version for Android and Microsoft

Share music, video, screen. Is this original with Apple? Not easy to make this work, I imagine. A couple big name partners. Disney, Hulu, HBO

1:04 What Apple is doing to broaden developer diversity. This is good work.

1:03 Tim Cook and an audience of emojis. Standard welcome.

1:00 PM Developer soundbites. Spitballing openings. Pretty funny. Here’s to the crazy ideas. Nice.

12:55 Welcome to the first post-Epic Apple developers conference. Millions of developers will be tuning in, according to the Wall Street Journal. What a day to measure developer satisfaction! A good pollster would have a field day.


  1. Alan Levy said:
    Things you won’t hear at the 2021 WWDC:

    “Today is going to be epic!”

    June 7, 2021
  2. Michael Goldfeder said:
    A silent toast to the 39% of App Developers who will be attending today and the rest of the week even though they’re unhappy. Soldier on!

    June 7, 2021
  3. Fred Stein said:
    OMG: IDs on Apple Wallet – been lusting for this for years woohoo !!!!

    June 7, 2021
  4. Robert Paul Leitao said:
    An hour and twenty five minutes into the keynote, I consider the advances in user features announced today to be astonishing. Increasingly, Apple has a wide economic moat and this is not evidenced in most notes from analysts. The “stickiness” of the eco-system has moved from glue to epoxy. There’s no need for hundreds of millions of consumers around the world to look outside Apple’s platform to find solutions.

    June 7, 2021
  5. John Konopka said:
    Digital Legacy is a great idea. Now that I’m getting on I’ve been thinking about this more and more.

    Universal Control will be great. I often take photos or screen shots with my iPhone or iPad and have to jump through a few hoops to get it onto my iMac.

    I can’t wait for screen sharing in FaceTime. It will really help explain to my mom how to use her devices.

    Multi-tasking in iPadOS looks much improved. I’m looking forward to that.

    The ability to simultaneously watch a movie with your friends while texting is awesome. I won’t likely use it, but the technology is incredible. I grew up in the 50s sitting around a B&W TV watching cartoons with my siblings. Different world.

    June 7, 2021
  6. Robert Varipapa said:
    Amazing presentation. Lots of cool new stuff in almost every product line. Makes Android look completely antiquated. Apple excels at usable features. Loved it. Now to find the betas to check out!

    June 7, 2021
  7. At a time when a percentage of developers seeks autonomy in regards to payments & APIs, Apple provides compelling new ways to enhance apps with AI & AR. Hardware already in-place.
    These features beg for AppleVision glasses or holographic projectors. Podrace helmet or dejarik games, pick one!
    Concurrency with Actors will speed up apps, unlocking the potential of multi-core processors, a gem in the thicket of new features announced today.
    Dynamic app store pages improve the developer & potential customer’s experience. In-App events made me remember SecondLife.
    Xcode Cloud sounds almost like virtual app prototyping, that and Test Flight might deliver cost savings for developers. Whatsapp, Slack and a few other apps will lose a subset to secure FaceTime, all depends on who’s on the call.
    MacOS Monterey on an M1, can’t wait!

    June 7, 2021
  8. Alessandro Luethi said:
    It’s almost impossible to summarize what Apple announced today… Apple should run the world!

    June 7, 2021
  9. Bart Yee said:
    @Robert Agree. For much of the newest features and improvement, IMO Apple continues to iterate, refine, and place USER experience at the forefront. I characterize this as creating software with thoughtful, insightful, usable, and effective solutions to everyday people’s uses of iOS/MacOS.

    @PED your comment “ HIde my email. Set up face email addresses on the fly. Who is the market for this?” is the beauty of Apple. You mentioned how many of these new features would be so applicable to you but a few would not. Some millions of other users are saying the same thing except with different feature subsets.

    Different sticky parts for different people.

    June 7, 2021
  10. Bart Yee said:
    I like the new Labs on Health/Wellness and trend tracking. One lab system I use has a web portal which gives me lab results but doesn’t collate them over time to give the patient trends, just data. In their Doctor-centric world, they expect patients to get that data and trends from Doctor’s electronic medical records software. Again, Apple is partnering with health records systems to put more info and power at (interested) users’ fingertips. With privacy and security.

    June 7, 2021
  11. Hap Allen said:
    Years ago, Steve referred to the ‘digital hub.’

    Indeed. More and more ‘satellites’ appearing.

    Among others, one thing I especially noted was a brief look at the interface that a doctor might have in front of him. Were enough docs to experience what I imagine would be a more useful display than what they’re used to, might they lobby for their employer to adopt the Apple platform as an adjunct?

    Tim to Jim Cramer: “Apple will be most remembered for its contributions to healthcare.”

    Wow. What must they have in the pipeline?

    June 7, 2021
    • I rarely recommend Wikipedia but the writers did a thorough job on Electronic Health Records.
      Privacy, trust, interoperability and ease of use are central issues with EHR. The EHRs like AllScripts, need a hardware vendor like Apple but fear letting any one in the front door. AI works wonders inside a giant EHR database.
      Practice Fusion was hit with a $145m fine last year for assisting Purdue Pharma.
      Patients have no idea everyone already has health reports, like credit reports, but we can’t easily see them. Errors abound for that & other reasons but health insurers can’t keep up. The EHRs own our health data and profit from the details.

      June 8, 2021
  12. Gregg Thurman said:
    I’m hoping like hell that “da Judge” saw today’s WWDC and has the ability to see what controlling the whole experience can lead to. No other OS can come close to these kinds of features because no other controls the whole stack.

    Off-the-shelf parts result in off-the-shelf mediocrity.

    June 7, 2021
  13. Timothy Smith said:
    Some of our favorite podcasters will need to replace ExpressVPN as a sponsor.

    June 7, 2021
  14. Bart Yee said:
    Well, Apple just provided more framework and structure for developers to build complementary and innovative apps around while using more and more of what Apple hardware has to offer.

    And of course, this shows just how much Apple offers to developers in term of revenue and profits to those who want to innovate, work, play and prosper as garden farmers and growers.

    Sure, you can play outside the garden in the wide open, untamed, wild expanses of Android but make no mistake, Android isn’t there to serve you and it’s users, it’s there to serve Alphabet/Google’s overall mission. Other bad actors would just as soon hijack your software and IP to scrape money from your customers, they don’t care and how are you going to police it yourself? Bedsides, Android only makes 1/2 of what iOS brings in for you and still charges the same fees.

    June 7, 2021

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