Oak City Labs & WWDC 2022

A few weeks ago, we met as a team to ooh and aah over the shiny new tech Apple unveiled at the annual WWDC. We had some pretty high expectations, and our wish lists were chalked full of fancy tech we wanted Apple to ‘wow’ us with this year. If you missed the event and want to hear our team’s thoughts and highlights, this post is for you!

“It’s Christmas in June for developers! This will be the preview for all the new tools and technology that we’ll work with for the next year, so that whole thing is hugely exciting.” – Jay Lyerly, COO and CO-Founder of Oak City Labs

Our Hopes and Dreams

As Apple fanatics and techies, we had hoped for updates on a wide range of both software and hardware. A couple of us wanted to hear the long awaited announcement of the virtual reality headset. We also held our breath in anticipation of the Apple car that has been in the works behind the scenes.

As some of Apple’s most loyal customers (our credit card statements will confirm), we had hoped to see a Snow Leopard style release of all software lines, from the Apple Watch to the Mac. We thought it would be beneficial to see Apple take a break from launching new products, and instead, focus on perfecting the stability and efficiency of its current hardware.

As software developers, we had hoped for updates on the current storyboard system and the introduction of SwiftUI Previews for both production apps and the UIKit. By adding SwiftUI Previews to the system, developers would have instant access to view a screen’s completed look without having to navigate through a running app. If the Preview system were to be integrated into the UIKit in the future, development would be a lot faster and completed with much less hassle.

Our Highlights

We’ll admit, our team didn’t get much on our wish lists this year. BUT, there was still a lot excitement for what Apple did announce, and we can’t wait to start using all the fancy new tech! Here’s a little overview of our team’s favorite releases for both personal use and development.

Of course we were all geeking out over the M2 chip for the new MacBook Air. With it being 40% more effective than the M1 chip, we are eager to see what this baby can do! We were also impressed by the redesigned MacBook Air that features an updated chassis with a uniform, flat body and a lighter feel from the previous generation. We were all happy to see the new charging options that the new laptop offers, including the 35W compact power adapter that has two USB-C ports, so users can charge two devices at once. This new MacBook Air finally supports fast charging capabilities for charging up to 50 percent in just 30 minutes with an optional 67W USB-C power adapter — there’s something we can all get excited about!

The new texting features “edit” and “undo” were also nice to see, and we love that we’ll be able to avoid embarrassing texting mistakes with this new ability! As developers, we look forward to seeing how the newly announced live text features will shape the way we build apps in the future. Developers will be able to copy text from photos, easily share map addresses, jump to URL’s, and use QR code interactions with live text. As we add new features to our apps, these abilities will definitely come in handy.

Another feature that we expect developers to start using is “passkeys”. While we’re not totally convinced in a “password-less” future, we do think this new software will provide a quick and easy way to sign into websites and apps across multiple platforms, as passkeys are synced with the iCloud Keychain!

The last feature that really stuck out to us as developers was the WeatherKit. “WeatherKit gives developers the ability to integrate Apple Weather forecast data directly into their apps and Xcode Cloud…it enables developers to integrate the same world-class global weather forecast that powers Apple Weather directly into their apps. Using high-resolution meteorological models combined with machine learning and prediction algorithms, Apple Weather provides current weather, 10-day hourly forecasts, daily forecasts, and historical weather.” As we continue to focus on building apps that focus on making day-to-day activities easier, it will be convenient to easily access valuable weather data that is included in the WeatherKit.

The Overall Score

It’s safe to say that our team’s favorite Apple event is the WWDC. Every year brings progress to the industry and exciting new tech for developers across the globe. Overall our team gave the WWDC22 a solid 4 star rating. Even though the event left some new software and hardware to be desired, we enjoyed gathering as a team and seeing the different features that we can use in both our development and everyday lives!