Unveiling the Future: A Deep Dive into WWDC 2024's Software Extravaganza

Everyone who gets even the remotest thrill out of anything APPLE – developers, tech enthusiasts and aficionados of all stripes – marks their calendars for the annual World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC), the company’s do-not-miss summer event. Standing on the verge of WWDC 2024, we can feel the buzz building. The rumour mill is spinning at full tilt, speculating about what cutting-edge software updates will be unveiled at APPLE’s June developers’ conference. Will iOS 18 herald a new focus on AI and machine learning? Will there be major updates for Vision Pro, APPLE’s next-generation headset, and updated OS versions across all of APPLE’s platforms? A game-changer, sure. But it also stands to reason that there’s going to be new hardware in the mix, too.

A Glimpse into WWDC's Hardware Chronicles

While software usually takes centre stage at WWDC — historically, it’s been the setting for APPLE to announce its software updates for the next year — APPLE has made a few hardware announcements at WWDC, as well.

From the Vision Pro reveal, and the launch of a trio of new Mac products in 2023, to the new MacBook Air and MacBook Pro introductions in 2022, hardware announcements have been a notable part of WWDC. Save for the 2021 event – which saw no new hardware reveal at WWDC – the event has generally been a mix of software smarts with hardware goods.

The Software Spectacle of WWDC 2024

But this year the winds have shifted heavily and, according to recent reports in Mark Gurman’s Power On newsletter, it seems we’re in for a break from hardware announcements at WWDC 2024 — with the year to be one in which APPLE iterates only on the software front. Just weeks ago, after a spate of updates across APPLE’s hardware range including the iPad, we heard that the next smartphone versions of the iPhone and Apple Watch, as well as the next-generation earbuds (AirPods 2023), were set to make an appearance in September. Add of that, and I expect the next generation of Apple TV and potentially even the M4 Mac range (indicated by recent rumours of an M2 Ultra on the horizon) are also waiting in the wings until 2024. You can do the math for yourself, but I surmise that it’s game on for a software-only WWDC next year.

The Software-Centric Strategy: A New Era for APPLE?

If APPLE pulls off its software-only strategy at WWDC 2024, it just may usher in a new world. At next year’s Worldwide Developers Conference, iOS 18 could be the most important version of the operating system ever, and visionOS is set to wow users and developers with a suite of updates and new features. APPLE’s customers around the world could be in for a breakthrough in immersive, interactive experiences.

iOS 18: The Next Frontier

However, with software taking centre-stage at this year’s WWDC, expect iOS 18 to be a bumper crop of AI goodness, enabling APPLE’s devices to do more for people, in even more ways than ever, with greater personalisation and intelligence at every turn.

visionOS: A Glimpse into the Future

WWDC 2024 will also likely see the launch of the major software update for the Vision Pro, and the much-awaited unveiling of visionOS. It will mark a watershed moment not for APPLE, but for the world, as we move beyond a software refining mindset to one of invention. These developments mark a new milestone for WWDC throughout history, and the eight points outlined in this piece mark APPLE’s march into the dawn of 2024.

APPLE at WWDC 2024: A Software Odyssey

But WWDC 2024 is also a prelude – not just to a product launch, as previous years have been, but to a software journey. Hardware launches were few and far between this year for APPLE and other companies, which makes it easy to focus on all of the new and changed software that is coming down the pike. That suggests to me that the never-ending quest to push the boundaries of software development that we first saw reflected in the Mac two decades ago will now unfold on every device that APPLE has any control over: the phone, the tablet, the Mac, and, of course, the watch.

The Essence of APPLE

At the core of its ethos is the unstoppable pursuit of progress by creating new forms of hardware and software that change the way we interact with and think about our devices. In other words, at WWDC 2024 and beyond, you can be sure that APPLE will continue to make our digital lives a little bit better, one update at a time.

Jun 06, 2024
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