Apple Keynote 2017

These are my notes from the watching of the keynote. They ripped through some stuff, so this is not comprehensive. My thoughts are at the end of this if you care.

Watch OS 4 will bring a bunch of features and updates. Available Fall 2017.

Mac OS High Sierra, yeah really. High! Fully Baked!

Updates to Safari: Safari is faster than Chrome. Auto-play blocking. I’m happy about this. No site should auto-play anything. Intelligent Tracking Prevention to protect your privacy.

Mail updates: Uses spotlight to find messages. Full-screen Split View. 35% less disk space.

Photo improvements in Photos. Better editing tools. Photo integration with other sites.

File system updates HFS, a 30 year old operating system. Time for a new file system. Apple File System, APFS is a new file system that will be default. More secure, and much faster.

H.265 compression built in saving up to 40%.

Graphics: Lots of updates. I’m not sure this isn’t all bullshit.  Metal updates. Thunderbolt enclosure for an AMD Graphics card. (Nobody wants that Apple. Where the hell is the damn NVIDIA cards.)

Fall everyone will get the update to High Sierra.

iMac updates: Better screens. 7th-gen Intel Core processors…finally. More memory capacity. Two USB-C Thunderbolt port. (They removed the standard Thunderbolt ports. UGH!)

iMac 5K Retina is getting new graphics cards all Radeon (where is NVIDIA?) Star Wars demo was very cool.

They introduced a 4k iMac starting at $1299.

MacBooks are getting new processors, and adding a new 13″ starting at $1299.

All new MacBooks and iMacs are available today.

New iMac Pro 27″ that will ship towards the end of the year. Same design. Space Gray finish. Most powerful Mac ever made. Added fans for 80% improvement in cooling. 8-Core Xeon Processor. Also 10 and 18-Cores. Graphics Radeon Vega graphics. New GPU Core up to 11 Teraflops. Up to 128GB ECC memory. Up to 4TB SSD. 4 USB-C. Built-in 10GB Ethernet. Starts at $4,999. Ouch!

iOS 11: Messages update. Drawer has been updated, and messages are now stored in the cloud.

Apple Pay introduces person to person payments. Send and receive money in iMessages. Money gets moved to an Apple Pay Card. You can withdraw the money.

Siri has an improved voice. There is now a male voice. Siri is adding translation, currently in Beta. Siri can do more in other apps.  Siri is synced across devices.

Camera will shoot video in HEVC (H.265). JPEG is replaced with HIEF. Both are 2x better at compression.

Photos has been updated with some new features. I got bored, so I can’t tell you what it was.

Control Center is now a single page, and updated with 3D touch.

Lock screen is updated with more notification access.

Live Photos has new effects added, so you have better control over those shots.

As this presentation goes on, lots of “machine learning” talk. Lots of learning about “you” talk. This looks like a direct attempt to compete with all the announcements Google just made. Thing is, it doesn’t work for me. Apple is showing me vertical video, and then telling me how machine learning helps them make Memories better. Confusion! Truth is that all of the announcements are geared towards the consumer end of Apple’s business.

“Do not disturb while driving” is a new feature that will keep messages from showing up on your phone while you are driving. You can auto message back to let people know you are driving, and you can let emergency messages get through.

Home Kit can now configure speakers with AirPlay 2.

App Store update: Getting a new design, first time in 9 years. Tabs for Day, Apps, Games to get attention directed to products.

Metal 2 and HEVC coming to the new iOS 11, and a bunch of machine learning. Vision API, Natural Language API, are using Core ML to help developers.

AR Kit is using features of the iPhone to allow you to put elements into your space. Nice demo showing a cup a lamp and a vase. Shadows change as the lamp moves. This is great use for AR. Because they will use the iPhone, it will make their AR platform the biggest in the world.

Wingnut AR was the coolest demo I have seen in a long time. This is a game changer for Apple.

New iPad Pro: 10.5″ Retina display. Full size keyboard on screen and smart keyboard. New screens improving color and more color brightness. Refresh rate on iPad screen is now 120Mhz. The faster refresh improves pencil performance. They can also adjust refresh rates to improve battery life. A10X CPU. Camera has been upgraded to be the same as the iPhone 7. Start with 64GB storage. Starts at $649.

iOS 11 Updates for iPad: Dock improvements. Drag and Drop has been added. New App named Files. They are exposing the file system with this. Supports iCloud and third party storage. Drag and Drop is very cool. Having access to Files is great. Makes the iPad feel much more like a computer.

Music update: Reinvent home music…HomePod is a speaker for the home. Just under 7″ tall. Mesh fabric. 7 beam-forming tweeter array. 4″ woofer. A8 processor in the speaker. Real-time acoustic modeling to make it sound great. Spatial awareness so it knows where it is located so it can adjust its sound. You can also use them in pairs. 6 microphone array so you can use Siri to have it give you the audio you want. $349 Comes in white and space gray in December.

My summary: Apple cares deeply about AR, IOS11, iPad, and their new speaker. This direction proves to me that Apple cares about the average consumer, and not the professional. Yes they introduced a machine with lots of guts, but this was an attempt to prove their loyalty to the pros. They don’t mean it. A broken iMac still takes a week to get fixed. That isn’t pro.

What impressed me was their AR demos. Apple could rule the world of AR very easily. The iPad with the new Files app is a game changer. For the first time, I look at that device and think that it could truly work for many people as a primary device. Android tablets are a constant disappointment to me.

The machine learning conversation seemed strained and wrong. Apple isn’t that company, Google is. When Apple talks about it, it seems creepy, like we are studying you so that we can give you more of what you want. Google says the same thing, but it doesn’t feel as creepy.

Overall, Good Keynote Apple. As a professional computer user, you have lost me as a customer. As a consumer of cool gear, I may still be a customer. Your market is the masses, and you are headed the right direction for them!

 

 

 

 

 

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