The Apple WWDC 2011 keynote today revealed all the details for Mac OS X Lion, iOS 5, and the iCloud as was promised. Although there was no mention about any upcoming hardware such as the iPhone 5, the event was a major step forward for the company in software. Here’s all the highlights and everything you need to know about the event wrapped up in a tidy little package. Plus, you can check out the full keynote video after the cut.
Mac OS X Lion
A major release with over 250 new features, of which ten were featured at the keynote.
Multi-Touch Gestures – disappearing scroll bars, fluid momentum based scrolling, swiping, and taps.
Full Screen Apps – takes advantage of every pixel on the screen. Standard method for developers to create full-screen apps. There is a new Full-Screen button. You can have more than one full-screen apps running at same time. Not like how it used to be. You can three-finger swipe to the right to go back to your desktop without closing the full-screen app.
Mission Control – Expose and Spaces combined. A simple three-finger swipe upwards takes you into Mission Control which is a bird-eye view of everything going on in your system. Multiple desktops and multiple full-screen apps, all easy to see and get to.
Mac App Store – Built-in to Lion. In-app purchases, push notifications, sandboxing for better security, and delta updates.
LaunchPad – A pinch motion makes all your applications fly onto your screen. The screen looks very similar to the iPhone and iPad icons grid interface.
Resume – Brings you right back to where you were when you quit the application. It works system wide, not just in apps.
Auto Save – Lion will automatically saves everything for you in the background. Adds a new History dropdown to your menu bar including Lock, Duplicate, Revert to Last Opened, and Browse All Versions.
Versions – can take manual snapshots, only changes are stored, not entire document in each version. Looks a lot like Time Machine, but works per document rather than your whole system. You can even cut and paste between the versions.
AirDrop – easy way to share files. Peer-to-peer WiFi-based network. Your system automatically detects who else around you is also running AirDrop. You can drag and drop files to them in this way. Auto-discovery, auto-setup. Confirmations on both sides to be safe, plus data is encrypted.
Mail – Interface revamped with full height message, favorites bar, and message snippets. New search suggestions, boolean searches, and conversation views.
Over 3000 APIs for developers. Easy to upgrade. Available in the Mac App Store. Requires 4GB of space when you buy one, it works on all your Mac devices, you don’t need separate licenses for each device. Priced at only $29.99. Available in July.
iOS 5 is a major release for developers and consumers. There are more than 1,500 APIs for developers and more than 200 new features for consumers. Again, the keynote highlights ten of those features.
Notifications Center – a complete and much needed revamp of the notifications system. Pulls together all notifications into one place that is accessible by down-swiping from the top of the screen, similar to how it’s done in Android. The Notifications Center essentially shows a list of different notifications organized by app. Non-obtrusive notification animation at the top of the screen that quickly goes away but can be easily accessed again later via Notifications Center. Improved lock screen shows more notifications. Sliding your finger across any notification takes you directly to the app where the notification came from. Notifications can also be individually dismissed or dismissed altogether.
News Stand – now easier than ever to access newspapers and magazines on iOS devices with integrated subscriptions feature. Content is downloaded in the background.
Twitter – is now deeply integrated into iOS. Can use single sign-on similar to Facebook’s single sign-on. Twitter becomes a native app and gets its own pane in the settings menu. Twitter is also integrated into native apps such as Camera and Photos, so that you can tweet directly from those apps. You can also tweet from Safari, YouTube videos, and from Maps. Contact photos can also be pulled directly from Twitter profiles.
Safari – a new Safari Reader button has been added that pops up in the address bar, just like how it does on Safari for desktops. Reformats pages to make it easier to read on an iPhone or iPad. Can also email contents of stories compete with its link.
Reading List – allows you to pull various articles together to look at later, much like what third-party service “Read It Later.” It syncs across all iOS devices so that if you didn’t finish reading something on your iPad, you can finish it on your iPhone.
Reminders – a native to-do app that can create virtual post-its and assign reminders and locations to different notes. Location-aware.
Camera – can be accessed faster directly from the lock screen. The volume button can now be used to take the photo. You can now pinch-to-zoom and you can hold your finger on part of an image to set autofocus and exposure lock. You can also edit your photos natively, such as red-eye reduction, quick-enhance, and cropping tools.
Mail – now gets rich-text formatting, indentation support, draggable addresses, and flagging to mark mail items unread. Search now works across the entire message, not just the subject. Better enterprise support with S/MIME support added for encryptions. New split-keyboard option for iPad interface for more convenient thumb typing.
PC Free – no longer needs to be synced with your desktop computer. A new iPhone or iPad will automatically setup and activate. Software updates are now over-the-air and there are now delta updates, which means you can download just what’s changed instead of the entire OS.
Game Center – now more social. Adding photos and you can even compare yourself against your friends and friends of friends. Friends and game recommendations. Support for turn-by-turn games.
iMessages – native enchancement to messaging. Now can do talk with individuals as well as groups. Supports text, photo, and video messaging. Delivery receipts and optional read receipts. You can also see if someone else is typing and the messages are pushed to any device that you’re logged in on. It works over 3G and WiFi and it’s all encrypted.
iOS 5 is scheduled to arrive this fall. Will support iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4, both version of the iPad, and the 3rd and 4th gen of iPod touch.
iCloud automatically stores your content in the cloud and wirelessly pushes it to all your devices. It’s integrated with all your apps.
“We have the solution: we’re going to demote the PC and Mac to be “just a device” – we’re going to move your digital life into the cloud,” says Steve Jobs.
MobileMe – syncing contact, calendar, and email are now to be offered through iCloud for free. MobileMe will cease to exist.
AppStore – purchase history can be seen on all devices now even if it isn’t installed on the device. A cloud button is added that lets you download the app to that device at no extra charge.
iBooks – purchase history on all devices as well. Push the cloud button and downloads to the device. Reading a book on one device and bookmarked a page, you can finish reading it on another device.
Backup – wireless backup to the cloud. Once daily, your content is automatically backed up to the cloud. If you ever switch to a new phone, just enter your username and password and your data is automatically synced to that new device from the cloud. Purchased music, apps, books, camera roll for both photos and videos, device settings, and app data are all automatically backed up to the cloud.
Documents in the Cloud – sync documents via the cloud automatically for Pages, Numbers, and Keynote.
Photo Stream – brings your photos to the cloud. Syncs all your photos to all your devices.
iTunes – now you can sync your songs across all your devices. Purchase history is added and allows you to re-download previously purchased songs. There is also the addition of the cloud button that lets you download an already purchased song to a device if its not already on that device. A new iTunes Match feature scans your music library and find a match in Apple’s music library. This way you do not have to upload all your songs to the iCloud, which can take a lot of time. iTunes Match takes only a few minutes. It can even scan and match music that wasn’t purchased from iTunes and stream those songs at 256kbps AAC DRM-free audio quality. This feature, however, costs $24.99 a year.
iCloud will be available with the launch of iOS 5 this fall.
Here’s the link to watch the full keynote.