WWDC24 – Apple Intelligence and more

Week 346 was posted by Charanjit Chana on 2024-06-12.

Apple packed in a lot during the opening keynote for WWDC24. Here are the key bits for me from Monday's announcement.


Straight into visionOS 2.0 where we'll see more gestures for users and tools for developers to take advantage of. There was talk of third-party hardware to capture spatial video and separately there was an announcement from Canon on their spatial lenses.

There's one bit of Apple's vision strategy I fail to understand. They knew of the Apple Vision Pro for a long time, why not align lenses up in the correct configuration before last year? It seems silly that only the iPhone 15 Pro, the Apple Vision Pro and mirrorless cameras are capable of capturing spatial videos and photos. Not that I have a device to view them on, but thinking ahead to when I may have one, I could have had a years worth of compatible photos and videos behind me already.

Thankfully, thanks to the smarts of the Apple Vision Pro, looks like it can take regular photos and, er, spatialise them.

iOS 18

The Photos app got lots of attention. I'm not sure about the all-in-one view that they're pushing forward with. I'm pretty familiar with the app as it is now so will be interesting to see how intuitive it is (or isn't) come September. At the moment I always confuse hit the For You tab when I'm looking for shared folders, which are easier to access under Albums. Hopefully this confusion is cleared up. We have shared Photostreams as a family but not a shared library. I need to figure that out some more though as it's been almost a year now and still not something I've taken advantage of but maybe I should.

The filters in Photos look to be getting more powerful. Some of it overlapped later in the keynote but hopefully all they talked about is for everyone. I tag friends and family in photos and the Photos app does a good job of recognising faces but if you don't put the effort in, how will it even know who is who?

The Home Screen

I spent so long arranging folders and widgets and icons that I have little need for the ability to arbitrarily align icons now but it's great to see that it's finally possible. Long overdue for sure and we now have the ability to make icons larger, ditching the app names underneath.

There will be dark mode icons and you'll be able to tint icons if you wish. The former is interesting, the later I couldn't care less about but I'm sure there are a lot of people who will love it.


Shake or nod to interact with Siri is a fun addition. Only for AirPods Pro 2 (not even AirPods Max), it's a shame as it's definitely a gesture I'd use.


Live Activities on the Apple Watch felt like an omission, especially for sports scores when the last version of watchOS came out. Happy to see that it's hear and smarter Smart Stacks too. Solid update in general and the ability to pause streaks is fantastic. Sometimes you need a rest day, you're travelling or very unwell and it's not fair that your streak suffers.

Vitals looks like an interesting feature, but not sure it will be compatible with the types of workouts I do.


The new floating tab bar looks great and by the sounds of it will be user customisable out of the box. Even if it's not, the interface is pretty familar as it's how some of the apps work in tvOS.

Freeform is an app I don't use enough. I should really try it as a note taking app for a while and having scenes within would make it easy to separate content out for multi-day or multi-session notes. For presenting too, which I did once in Freeform but never really attempted again.

The Calculator app apparantly got the biggest cheer, but beyond the fact that it's finally here, it's the Apple Pencil integration that just blew me away. Not only can Math Note convert handwritten notes into answers, it supports variables and persists them across your sheet. Also available in Notes, it looks like a great implementation.

Smart Script should be on all iPads, I didn't see any caveats about it being tied to a M-series processor. I hope it is, because my handwritten is awful. Mainly because I'm in a rush. Sometimes I think that typing might be faster but I love colour coding the notes according to who is speaking which makes breaking it down and absorbing notes easier later on. Really looking forward to my own handwriting being more legible in the future!

macOS Sequoia

The updates to Continuity look fantastic. Not only iPhone mirroring, but the ability to interact with it all too. I use the copy and paste interoperability and AirDrop all the time, this really does take to the next level.

I've long used 1Password, but half of my logins live in iCloud too so having a full app to work with, I'll be migrating between one of them later this year.

Reader View was highlighted as an update to macOS, but I hope it comes to iOS too. I really like it as a Safari feature because it makes reading long articles tolerable without ads and cookie banners getting in the way. Any enhancements to it are welcome.

Apple Intelligence

Or AI. Let's start with what looks great:

Those are my two highlights. A little bitter as I have an iPhone 14 Pro, not the newer 15 Pro, so I won't be getting all of the features. And even the second point, it wasn't clear to me if that will only be available on an iPhone 15 Pro or if all iPhones will benefit. I hope we all get an improved Siri which is now approaching it's teens and is still pretty dumb.

Siri and/or Apple Intelligence work on your notifications, surfacing the most important but again, maybe this is just for new phones. I'd certainly benefit from having something like that, but I'm not upgrading for it.

Clean Up

Clean Up was filed under Apple Intelligence, I really hope that was for the keynote and it's actually had wider availability. Rarely do I want to remove objects, Photomator is great at doing that anyway, but having it there natively (and possibly better) would be a killer feature for all iPhone users.

One of the few times I've been envious of Android users who have had this for years now.

Tags: apple, ios, iPadOS, macOS, wwdc

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