Apple's WWDC 2021 (opens in new tab) event started last night and it brought with it a plethora of information about all your favorite (or not so favorite) Apple products. With so much news out there, we've helped you out by narrowing things down to the most interesting details.
For iPhone owners, there's the exciting announcement that iOS 15 is on its way and will likely be released in September 2021 for everyone. If you're an owner of one of the best smartphones (opens in new tab) out there, you'll appreciate that iOS updates of this type are rarely underwhelming. According to Apple, there will be some substantial improvements along the way. These include new features for FaceTime with a focus on the service being more comfortable and lifelike. Expect to see spatial audio so it feels more like the recipient is in the same room as you, voice isolation that focuses on your voice only, blocking out any ambient noises, plus Wide Spectrum which means you can focus on you and the environment around you.
Arguably best of all is SharePlay where you can share music, TV shows and movies, as well as your screen, via the service with the likes of Disney Plus (opens in new tab), Twitch and ESPN already supporting the new feature.
There are updates for Messages too with improved group chats, new status options similar to what WhatsApp already provides, and improved do not disturb modes. You'll also be able to use Apple Wallet for identity cards such as driving licenses too, and there are improvements across the board amongst mostly everything else within iOS.
Worried your iPad will miss out? Don’t worry! There's a reason why iPads are always ranking high in our best tablets (opens in new tab) overview -- they're regularly supported. Widgets are being improved here and you can now enjoy an App Library like on iOS 14, enabling you to easily view all your apps on a separate screen much like Android's app drawer. Multitasking has been improved for iPads, plus you'll be able to drag and drop your work between your iPad and Mac near seamlessly.
On that note, the best home computers (opens in new tab) and best laptops (opens in new tab) won't be missing out either with macOS 12 known as Monterey launching later this year too. Besides the universal control feature which means you can switch between your iPad and MacBook seamlessly, the aforementioned FaceTime improvements are coming to your desktop, along with Shortcuts. If you've used Shortcuts on your iPhone before, you'll know how easy it is to automate everyday tasks via the app and it's sure to be a real time saver for avid Mac users. Look out for a redesigned Safari too which we suspect will be yet another competitor in the battle of the best web browsers (opens in new tab).
As always, all these updates will be entirely free for Apple users so look forward to a superior experience later this year. September is the earliest we expect to see the likes of iOS 15 and the latest iPadOS with the new launches generally coinciding with new hardware revisions.