5 Things Apple Should Announce At WWDC 2018 (But Definitely Won’t)
Today’s the big day. Apple are back with another bunch of software announcements at their annual developers’ conference – WWDC 2018. Expect new versions of iOS and MacOS.
And while I could do a simple predictions piece, two issues stop me from doing that:
1. You’ve probably read the same piece 100+ times from various other sites in the space I’m in.
2. There are no surprises or bold predictions to make.
If you’ve found your way onto New Rising Media, chances are you have experience in WWDC keynotes and know they will always focus on software updates and tiny hardware upgrades. At the end of the day, the audience is developers. No need to roll out any consumer-facing big guns like a new iPhone.
Chances are if you watch it live, you’ll be a little bit bored by the slow burn of news that will make you think “wait…why does this matter?” So, let’s take this on a little differently.
For every one software tweak or announcement that Tim Cook and his crew will make, there are another 10 that the world actually wants to see but will never make it to the light of day in Apple’s notoriously locked down garden of tech Eden.
Here are five such announcements that would be game changing for the company, but so wildly out of character for them that you’re better off waiting for pigs to fly.
1. Siri integration with Spotify/all music services
Apple’s relentless efforts to shut off Siri from any competing services has (and will always be) a pet peeve of mine.
As you would expect, Apple Music (minus the odd misunderstanding of a thick Nottingham accent) works well with voice-based song/album/playlist requests. We know this works, but yet, they don’t allow Spotify to take advantage of that same system. This encourages greater interaction with the centre console while driving, which can be extremely risky.
Not only is it a rather consumer-hostile move, it’s downright dangerous too. No need to rant any further about this, but most of the points from my blog about this have not been addressed in the year since writing it.
2. A touchscreen Mac
I get what both Tim Cook and the late Steve Jobs said about the possibility of a touch-enabled Mac computer – with a vertical display, the ergonomics are not great.
However, the laptop and desktop form factors have altered to the touchscreen preferences of the consumer, from the easy-to-manipulate display of Microsoft’s Surface to the many usable angles of any third-party display.
There’s no real reason that Apple couldn’t do the same, except for eating into their own iPad sales – which is a brand they care about a lot.
3. A complete TV offering
I don’t mean an Apple television screen in the house, nor a Netflix-esque streaming service. What I mean is the golden goose – an all-in-one cable box that encompasses both online and TV services into one handy package.
All the software UI efficiencies of an online streaming service with the live convenience of terrestrial television. So far, this has proven to be impossible in America. But if any Apple execs do read this (hi, by the way), please do consider giving your idea a chance in the UK.
We have a TV space ripe for change and anti-competition regulations that make it possible.
4. Free dongles with every USB-C Macbook
This one is more a shout out to those living the dongle life. Luckily, I got my MacBook Pro just before the new model was introduced.
For the sake of “good design,” you can’t just strip away common-sense UI. And before you claim it’s Apple bravely dropping old tech, much like they did with removing Flash from iOS, then you only need to look at the vast number of dongles customers are buying and using to continue support of their own hardware.
And it’s making the laptops look rather ugly with a random sprouting crop of cables dangling off the side of the device.
We would all like for good guy Apple to show its face and provide free dongles for standard USB and SD cards with every MacBook/MacBook Pro.
5. Free Apple Pay Terminals to All Businesses
Now, I know this sounds rather mental. But bear with me – I have a plan.
As a futurist, my excitement is building as we walk proudly towards a cashless society. To wave goodbye to my wallet and the bulky notes + coins that come with it in exchange for a device that does it all.
Bit by bit, Apple have marched towards this with great levels of consumer adoption of their Pay platform. But there is one thing they can do, which makes for a gigantic step forward.
Offer free Apple Pay terminals to all businesses in exchange for a % commission up to covering the cost of the device.
Loss-leading products are something this company will never do. But this opportunity would be massive for them in terms of widespread adoption. Everybody, even down to the local fruit & veg stall man, will be able to take Apple Pay transactions.
A device built and shipped directly from the big A guarantees their level of design/UI oversight for the “it just works” mantra they pump out with every product, but it rapidly expands the amount of companies eligible to take advantage of Apple Pay.