The iPhones XS, XS Max, and XR and the Apple Watch Series 4 weren’t all that was announced today. There were just a few other morsels that Tim Cook briefly covered at the end of the event.
I was shocked when the HomePod was a complete no-show at WWDC. However, the features some of us expected it to get then were announced today. The HomePod will get the ability to do the following:
- Ping your iPhone (like the Apple Watch can do today).
- Search for songs by lyrics.
- Set multiple timers (finally).
- Make phone calls through your iPhone. (also a no-brainer)
- Siri Shortcuts
Most of that list is just Apple getting the HomePod up to speed with the rest of the market after a late start. However, the last one is kind of interesting. We did’t get any real details on how HomePod will work with Siri Shortcuts or how far they will go, but that could be interesting, and could start to extend the capability of the device in new ways.
Additionally, we found out that AppleTV is getting an update related to Dolby Atmos. Tim Cook also made sure to mention that macOS Mohave is also coming on September 24.
What we didn’t get
That’s for what we got. Now let’s talk for a second about what we didn’t get today. The easy ones are all the rest of the gear predicted to be released between now and Christmas. This would include the iPad Pros, MacBook, Mac Mini, AirPods, and AirPower. I would expect all but one of those to be announced at a smaller event in a month or so.
What about the AirPower? There is word from those who had invites to the event today that all mentions of the already-announced device have been scrubbed from Apple’s website, and that no Apple employees would speak about it, on or off the record. It’s a no-fly zone, at this point, which is very strange. Either something has gone wrong and there is another delay, or Apple has just completely written it off. Based on these reports, I wouldn’t hold my breath for the AirPower.
There are a couple of other things that were rumored at different times leading up to this event that we didn’t get. First of all, the one that bothers me is the lack of Pencil support for the OLED iPhones. I’m running out of hope that we will ever get this feature at this point.
Another one that we got wind of recently is that Apple will not be including a new USB-C fast charger and USB-C to Lightning Cable in the box with the new iPhones. No, we are stuck with the same old (focus on old) 5 watt charger. Cheap move, Apple.
That puts a bow on this one, folks. I’ll be back with some analysis of the highlights, and talk about what I will be getting on Friday tomorrow.