It’s a beautiful day in Cupertino, San Jose—as hundreds gathered at Apple Park eagerly anticipating Apple’s annual WWDC. A sprightly Tim Cook greeted the roaring audience, who was met with more thunderous claps after he teased that this would be the most exciting WWDC to be unveiled. Expectations soared but the tech giant surely delivered—with this year’s conference proving its might. First and foremost, confirming rumours of its first wearable spatial computer—named Apple Vision Pro.
Not to be confused with virtual reality or augmented reality, this groundbreaking device eliminates seclusions of the former and limitations of the latter—by seamlessly blending digital content with the physical world. If not for the Apple Park trees whistling in the wind and the cacophony of cheers scattered amongst the crowd, I would have thought I was in an episode of Black Mirror. While watching in awe as demonstrations took over the screen, this sprung to mind: the future, has indeed crept up on us.
“Today marks the beginning of a new era for computing,” says Apple’s CEO. “Just as the Mac introduced us to personal computing, and iPhone introduced us to mobile computing, Apple Vision Pro introduces us to spatial computing. Built upon decades of Apple innovation, Vision Pro is years ahead and unlike anything created before—with a revolutionary new input system and thousands of groundbreaking innovations.” Undoubtedly, a historical moment for Apple as they herald a new era—having created the most ambitious product in their arsenal.
On site, Vogue Singapore delves deeper into the Vision Pro as well as other notable products and developments from this year’s WWDC.
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Apple Vision Pro
A new dimension occurs with the invention of the Apple Vision Pro. Where you can access an infinite canvas via a three-dimensional user interface controlled by your eyes, voice and hands. That means going beyond the parameters of a typical device and being able to navigate and position your apps and home screen side by side. For its most ambitious product ever created, Apple introduces the first spatial operating system—dubbed as visionOS. And it unlocks a realm that seamlessly merges the digital space with the physical world. With the device fitted and activated, you’ll be able to interact with the people before you as they naturally blend with the huge floating interface you’re working on simultaneously.
Mike Rockwell, Apple’s vice president of the Technology Development Group comments: “Creating our first spatial computer required invention across nearly every facet of the system.” Sure enough, it unlocks a completely new set of experiences for the user, whether for work or personal endeavours. It’s a computer you can take just about anywhere, with an immersive display that packs 23 million pixels across two displays and custom Apple silicon. With Vision Pro, you can take your gaming adventures to new heights and transform your room into a personal movie theatre, whether it be films, TV shows or three-dimensional movies. Apple’s partnership with The Walt Disney Company also means there will be more exclusive content to be enjoyed better on Vision Pro. That’s not all, the spatial computer is also fitted with a three-dimensional camera, that allows users to capture, relive and immerse themselves in a fond, precious memory.
As for conference and FaceTime calls, Vision Pro cleverly registers your face and then renders a digital representation of your best self. Coupled with its most advanced machine learning techniques, which includes face and hand movement in real time, you won’t be captured on meetings with the conspicuous headset, but rather the device’s Persona of your face and expressions.
Apple Vision Pro will be available next year.
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Updates for AirPods Pro (2nd gen)
Our 2nd generation AirPods Pro are about to get a neat upgrade, which will change the way we converse and interact while bopping to our favourite hits. With Adaptive Audio in place, Transparency mode and Active Noise Cancellation work together to tailor the noise control as you walk through a crowded park to a quiet office. An especially helpful add-on? Conversation Awareness, which instantly lowers the volume while you speak to people with your AirPods in place, reducing background noise and at the same time, enhancing the voices of the people around you.
Software updates for AirPods Pro (2nd gen) are to be expected later this year.
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With each iOS upgrade, there’s more fun to be had on the iPhone. And number 17 is no exception. It gets more personal and intuitive as the new system brings in Live Voicemail—a live transcript of the voicemails as they come in, stickers that can be created by lifting your subject off your photos, Check-in via Messages that helps you notify your contacts once you have reached a certain destination.
Riffed off AirDrop, NameDrop enables you to exchange contact details with someone new via the swift system. But our ultimate favourite? The new Standby function. Tilt your iPhone horizontally to view a default full-screen experience with necessary information that you can see from a distance. Come bedtime or charging mode, Standby will present the time in stunning clock styles, a slideshow of photos and other essential apps without you reaching for your smartphone.
iOS 17 will be available soon.
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The new Mac Studio and Mac Pro
Enabled by Apple’s new chip—M2 Ultra, the new Mac Studio and Mac Pro each get its own makeover, with the latter now boasting Apple Silicon. Mirroring what behemoth entertainment studios with the likes of NBC use in their day-to-day operations, these all-new products command a huge performance boost and enhanced connectivity. This changes the game when it comes to rendering videos, booting up apps and doubling the download speeds as compared to its predecessors.
The new Mac Studio and Mac Pro are available to order from 9 June 2023.
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15-inch MacBook Air
At last, a 15-inch MacBook Air. Weighing in at just 1.51kg, this compact laptop bags impressive capabilities, thanks to the performance of the M2. Think a device that runs 12 times faster than the fastest Intel-based MacBook Air with extraordinary battery with up to 18 hours. Completed with an 1080p FaceTime HD camera, a three-mic array that traps crisp audio and a six-speaker sound system to deliver twice the bass depth of sound, there’s good reason why this is the world’s best 15-inch laptop.
The 15-inch MacBook Air will be available to order from 7 June 2023.
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Increasingly, our Apple devices are adapting to our lifestyles and the upcoming watchOS 10 is proof of it. With Smart Stack, the watch displays proactive and relevant information on the face itself, personalised for the user. For instance: a weather forecast pops up in the beginning of the day and boarding passes from your Wallet will show when it’s the day of your flight.
As always, Health is a crucial focus. In the Mindfulness app in the new OS, users can log in their emotions and daily moods and even describe their feelings in detail. Beyond that, depression and anxiety assessments often used in clinics are now easily accessible in the Health app. These can help users determine their risk level and create a PDF to share with their doctor.
Those who relish workouts, especially cycling and hiking can benefit from the upcoming updates. Better accuracy of cadence, speed and power can be expected to track and improve performance while hiking expeditions can now provide a new Elevation view to offer a three-dimensional scope of saved waypoints.
watchOS 10 will be available later this year.