WWDC always looms large in the Apple calendar, and this year didn’t disappoint. As well as user-friendly features like message editing and the crowd-pleasing return of MagSafe charging ports to MacBook Air (M2), we saw powerful changes to Apple’s OS estate, and got our first glimpse of the M2 chip’s potential. Business Director Lucy Randall shares her thoughts.
After over a year of rumours, the Apple M2 chip is here. It continues Apple’s focus on power-efficient performance – its powerful 8-core CPU is 1.9x faster than a 10-core PC chip while using only 25% of the power, which is great news for anyone looking to lower their carbon footprint or reduce power costs.
According to Apple’s own numbers, the M2 marks a significant leap in performance from the previous generation of chips: it’s up to 1.4x faster than the M1 chip, up to 15x faster than the Intel MacBook Air and up to 6x faster than the Intel MacBook Pro! The improved GPU performance it offers video editors is particularly significant: the MacBook Pro (M2) can handle 11 streams of 4K ProRes and up to two streams of 8K ProRes, while delivering faster encoding, editing and image processing times.
We’re still waiting on benchmarking information comparing the M2 (currently found in MacBook Air and the 13” MacBook Pro) with the M1 Max and M1 Ultra (found in the 14” and 16” MacBook Pro models), but we’ll share that information with our customers as soon as we have it.
macOS Ventura introduces a host of new features that we can't wait to start using, including the ability to ‘unsend’ emails. Mail now lets you unsend an email or schedule messages for a more appropriate time. More importantly though, it can now intelligently set reminders to follow up or flag if responses haven’t been received. Mail will now also catch common mistakes such as forgetting an attachment or recipient and ask if you want to add what’s missing.
But one of the most significant changes from a business point of view is the introduction of Passkeys. These combine cryptographics and biometrics to develop a complex alternative to traditional passwords that can’t be leaked or phished, making them a vital asset for security-conscious companies.
From a user experience standpoint the star of the show was Stage Manager, which helps users group open apps and windows into bundles and store them at the side of the screen. Users can create bundles of windows associated with specific tasks (eg a ‘work’ and ‘home’ view, or a different view for each project they’re involved in) and move between them with a single click. This is much cleaner and simpler than the current system, which involves switching between multiple pseudo-desktops, and is sure to be popular with anyone looking to improve their focus and efficiency – especially as it’ll also work on iPadOS and external displays.
An update which was particularly popular at Jigsaw24 HQ was the news that FaceTime now supports Handoff, so you can transfer calls seamlessly between your iPhone, iPad and Mac as needed. You can also mount your iPhone on your Mac and use it as a webcam, which enables Centre Stage, Studio Light and Desk View on all your calls.
Finally and perhaps most importantly, Apple have improved the search functionality in Spotlight to include shared documents and text within images, and to deliver richer information alongside each result. We’re all juggling multiple conversations in multiple apps throughout the day, and precise, clear search results are vital to making sure everyone can find the information they have.
Many of the updates in iOS 16 are focused on personalising your iPhone and maximising efficiency. Focus filters allow you to develop different profiles (work vs home being the most obvious one) with different lock and home screens, different alerts activated and muted and reduced noise and distractions. You can customise the lock screen for each (for example, showing the Calendar widget and muting sports scores while in work mode, showing alerts for messages rather than emails in family mode) to ensure you’re only seeing the content that matters most to you.
Much like Mail, Messages gets a set of powerful editing tools, including the ability to edit sent messages and undo recent sends. You can also mark messages as read or unread, so it’s easier to organise your inbox.
On the accessibility front, Dictation has been made much more powerful, with new features allowing you to use Dictation and the keyboard at the same time and switch back and forth between them during one session – great for taking notes and editing on the go.
Later this year, US merchants will be able to accept Apple Pay and other contactless payments simply by using iPhone without any additional hardware. While this is a great step forward for small businesses looking for a simpler way to transact, there’s currently no confirmed date for its launch in the UK.
One of the most exciting announcements for our creative customers is Reference Mode, which allows you to transform a 12.9" iPad Pro into a professional reference monitor for QC, colour grading and more. Reference Mode is compatible with a range of HDR and SDR colour spaces, and can be activated when using iPad as a standalone display or when using Sidecar.
On a business front, iPadOS 16 brings a huge number of collaborative features, including sharing notes, presentations, reminders, Safari tab groups and more in Messages to start collaborating instantly. Users can also see updates on shared projects in their Messages thread and message collaborators directly from the app they’re working in. Later this year Apple plan to add Freeform, an ever-expanding virtual whiteboard that teams can use in place of apps like Miro.
New MacBook Air (M2) and MacBook Pro (M2) models will be available next month. The current MacBook Air model will continue to be available. iOS 16 and iPad OS 16 will be begin beta testing in July, with a full public release expected in Q3. macOS Ventura is expected later this year.
MacBook Air (M2)
13” MacBook Pro (M2)
Want to know more about your Apple options and how to make your OS upgrades seamless? Get in touch with the team by calling 03332 409 321 or emailing solutions@Jigsaw24.com. For the latest news, follow us on LinkedInand Twitter. Alternatively, drop your details into the form below and one of the team will be in touch.
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With iOS 16 out now and macOS Ventura just around the corner, we thought we’d take a look.
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