Apple’s WWDC21: what to expect at the June 7 keynote
Affectionately known as ‘DubDub’ to the devs community, Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) kicks off this spring, virtually of course, from Apple Park. The annual tech meet started in 1987 in Santa Clara and eventually moved to Silicon Valley years down the line.
The all-online conference that used to take place every spring at Apple Park in California, is catnip for all developers, offering insights into the future of Apple’s operating systems such as iOS, iPadOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS. Developers can also learn about the new technologies, tools, and frameworks they rely on to build innovative and platform-differentiating apps and games.
This year, includes a groundswell of expected launches: as predicted, a new line-up of OS, a potential ‘M1X’ MacBook Pro, more on Apple’s spatial audio tech. Apple may also announce a new line-up of original films and series for its own OTT service. AppleTV+ has launched favourite award-winners such as The Morning Show and Ted Lasso. And speaking of entertainment, Apple Arcade is also expected to release new gaming partnerships and, of course, a fun new set of experiences ahead which are likely to be heavy on the Augmented Reality.
On June 1, Apple also announced a number of Indian-origin winners for the annual Swift Student Challenge. We spoke to a few of these young developers about their perspective on the evolving tech industry for programmers.
Apple’s WWDC 2021 kicks off
The opening scenes of WWDC21 sees developers thinking up a film about the conference. One suggested name for the film is ‘Our Journey Into Tomorrow’. Many interpretations include musicals, a disembodied voice of Craig Federighi, a rock concert, a superhero moment where code saves the day. The best idea? CEO Tim Cook getting out a Delorian.
Apple’s Tim Cook says ‘threat profile’ of iPhone justifies App Store rules
Apple Inc Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook told a court the ‘threat profile’ of the iPhone required tight control of the App Store, which Fortnite gamemaker Epic Games says is a monopoly that Apple abuses.
Epic has waged a public relations and legal campaign, arguing that Apple acts anti-competitively by only allowing apps it approves on the world’s 1 billion iPhones and by forcing developers to use Apple’s in-app payment system, which charges commissions of up to 30% on sales.
Cook under questioning said he had higher concerns about the phone than Mac computers. “You have a phone in your pocket most of the time and you want instant service. We felt both the use cases and the threat profile would eventually be much greater because of the number of iPhones on the market.”
Apple halves App Store fees for small developers
Apple has halved App Store commission for developers earning up to $1 million.
“Developers can qualify for the programme and a reduced, 15% commission if they earned up to $1 million in proceeds during the previous calendar year,” Apple said in a statement.
If a developer crosses the $1 million mark, the standard commission rate of 30% will be applicable for the remaining year.
Developers can qualify again for the reduced fees when their business drops below the $1 million mark.
Apple asks app developers to disclose user data on apps
Apple has asked its app developers to reveal user data that they and their third-party partners collect for apps and app updates.
“Third-party partners” refers to analytics tools, advertising networks, third-party SDKs, or other external vendors whose code developers add to their app.
“You need to identify all of the data you or your third-party partners collect,” the company said in its App developer site.
Regards from Apple CEO
Apple CEO Tim Cook preps viewers for WWDC 2021 with a peppy 10-seconds video clip on Twitter.