WWDC, Apple's annual conference for developers, kicked off Monday with the announcement of iOS 17, macOS 14, and the much-anticipated Apple headset. At Shape, we have already delved into the beta versions of these operating systems and begun exploring the new APIs that developers can now leverage to create premium products.
We asked some iOS developers at Shape to share their favourite announcements from the keynote. Watch their responses in the video below 👀👇
There’s more to WWDC than the Keynote
But WWDC doesn't conclude with the keynote. Apple will release session videos from Tuesday to Friday, covering the new frameworks, APIs, and features of the operating systems. We have requested several iOS developers at Shape to watch numerous videos each day and identify the three videos that left the greatest impression on them. Stay tuned throughout the week as we update this post with our favourite session videos from each day of WWDC.
Best of Friday, 9 June By Júlio César Flores, iOS Developer
As a tech enthusiast, WWDC always fills me with excitement. This year’s WWDC showcased two groundbreaking innovations: The revolutionary Apple Vision Pro XR headset and remarkable advancements in SwiftUI. I will explore the captivating spatial computing and app development, unlocking a world of cutting-edge possibilities and incredible features that lie ahead. At the same time, making it nice and easy to use with SwiftUI. I can’t wait to embark on this journey into the future, trying out the inspiring developments which were uncovered at WWDC 2023. And I am starting by checking this out:
The SwiftUI Cookbook for Focus
Focusing has not been great in SwiftUI, lacking some features like default focus and handling specific actions upon pressing keys. So far. From understanding the significance of focus and its role in directing user input to exploring focusable views, focus state, focused values, and focus sections, this session showcases the ingredients needed to create an exceptional user experience through proper control focus, using both previous and new APIs. It emphasises how focus enhances user interaction, provides visual cues for input methods, and helps users navigate complex layouts. Overall, this video equips developers with valuable insights and practical techniques to create engaging, intuitive, and accessible user interfaces with SwiftUI and focus APIs.
Spring animations have always seemed to be a bit scary for me to play with. But thanks to new introduction to the Spring animations, it has been made easy to use. For example, I didn’t know that not all spring animations bounce! In fact, non-bouncy spring animations have become the default animation in SwiftUI. By specifying no animations, SwiftUI is going to use a spring animation. Although the concepts of Spring animations are mathematically in this session, knowing them is optional because everything is handled by the system, where we can tweak none, one, or two parameters to fine-tune the animation. Of course if the developer wants to play with the good old mass, stiffness and damping, they’re still there.
Now comes a theme that is close to my heart. I love to work with bending virtuality into reality. After having already checked out a few sessions related to Apple’s new toy (I’m talking about Vision Pro), and how to make new apps or transport existing ones into visionOS, this session crossed my path. It’s interesting how intuitive it is to include the automatic adaptation of controls for glass backgrounds, both automatic and intentional adoption of vibrant materials for legibility, the addition of hover effects to make interactive elements clear, and the utilisation of ornaments (side-window controls) and tab views for layout customisation.
Best of Thursday, 8 June By Daniel Rasmussen, iOS Developer
Apple continues helping developers make their apps more interactive and engaging. Today’s developer sessions provided more context to the tools available to put the user in control, demonstrating how easily it can be done. These three sessions especially inspired me to start developing with new frameworks.
Design dynamic Live Activities
Live Activities have been excellent for displaying timely and relevant information in your app to be visible at a glance. With the introduction of the new StandBy mode, this has been upgraded to the next level. This session also provided great tips for designing for the Dynamic Island which further highlights the fun and creative possibilities it provides.
Explore pie charts and interactivity in Swift Charts
This session demonstrated just how easy it is to use the upgraded Swift Charts framework to further customise the look and feel of your apps. Visualising data in the best way can be a tough task and having more options for doing so is always beneficial. The new interactivity features of selecting and scrolling enhance the experience of understanding the data.
App Shortcuts are a great way to highlight and launch the essential functions of your app. Since Apple’s acquisition of Workflow, it has been great to see the improvements to the possible automation of workflows and interoperability of multiple apps. This session offers more opportunities of showcasing your app’s shortcuts and increasing their visibility.
Best of Wednesday, 7 June By Surabhi Chopada, iOS Developer
This year's WWDC has quite an amazing lineup of things. The second day presented multiple interesting sessions, showcasing exciting frameworks, new tools, and enhancements to existing libraries. After fully immersing myself in all the sessions, I handpicked three remarkable ones that made a lasting impression on me. It was a cool lineup, leaving me inspired and eager for more.
Bring widgets to life
This year, Apple went all-in on widgets and interaction for their platforms. It's mind-blowing to see how interactive widgets open up so many cool options for app interaction. I can’t wait to add animation and interaction to widgets and try them out in some of my existing apps.
It's seriously amazing to see how app distribution has become so much easier. For years, the process of distributing apps has been quite complex. But now, with the latest update to Xcode and Xcode Cloud, things have been seriously simplified. I can't even express how remarkable this newfound ease is.
We now have a brand new console for testing push notifications. It’s incredible to see this new addition to the console. Say goodbye to relying on external tools for testing notifications! This development is undoubtedly going to revolutionise the way we test and manage push notifications.
Best of Tuesday, 6 June By Sergey Chsherbak, iOS Developer
The first day was an exciting showcase of what lies ahead for us and Apple. From introductions to new groundbreaking software frameworks to updates for existing ones, the sessions left me wanting more and also very excited about the future of development. While there are so many cool and knowledgeable sessions to choose from, these three sessions stood out for me.
What’s new in Xcode 15
I’m always excited to build new things, but what gets me even more excited is using new Xcode features and tips. It allows me to enjoy the development process even more while also increasing my productivity. It’s amazing to see how many new good features are introduced to Xcode this year.
It was great to get an introduction to Apple’s new framework for persisting data. Many developers have been waiting for it for years. I’m really excited to see how we can take advantage of it in the apps we develop.
I’m amazed by the growth and development of SFSymbols over the past few years. And now, with the introduction of animations, I’m thrilled to explore the possibilities of using them in our apps, providing users with more playful and expressive interactions.