Each June, tech editors and software developers from all over the world travel to Cupertino to attend Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) 2022 keynote event. As its name suggests, the WWDC traditionally announces software development updates. But that hasn’t stopped Apple fans from speculating reports on hardware reconfigurations and new product launches. That said, there have been instances of the contrary. Ahead, we set the record straight, live from WWDC 2022 in Cupertino, California, USA.
The New Ultra Powerful M2 Chip
Apple introduced the all-new, all-powerful M2 chip—marking the beginning of the next generation of Apple silicon designed specially for Mac. It boasts an impressive 18 percent faster CPU, 35 percent more powerful GPU, and a 40 percent faster Neural Engine—hardware responsible for accelerating and optimising machine learning as well as neural network tasks for speed and energy efficiency—when compared to its predecessor. It also provides 50 percent more memory bandwidth, and up to 24GB of fast unified memory. In other words: The M2 is Apple’s fastest and most formidable chip, yet.
Content creators will really be able to take advantage of this, as it’s designed to substantially speed up video workflows. M2 introduces a state of the art media engine and a powerful ProRes video engine for hardware-accelerated encode and decode. In other words: Systems with M2 will be able to seamlessly playback more streams of 4K and 8K video than before.
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The Brand-new MacBook Air
Yes, the rumours are true: There’s a brand-new MacBook Air, and it’s most definitely worth the hype. For starters, it’s been completely redesigned. The new MacBook Air is extremely slim, measuring at only 11.3mm thing and weighing about 1.2kg. It features a durable, all-aluminium unibody enclosure that feels incredibly well-made. But the biggest, and most important, feature is that it comes with the all-new M2 chip which allows for a fan-less design. And that’s not all.
The new MacBook Air also comes with a 13.6-inch Liquid Retina display, a 1080p FaceTime HD camera, four-speaker sound system, and up to 18 hours of battery life. Just like in the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro with M1 chip, the MacBook Air will now also come with MagSafe charging and fast charge—up to 50 percent in just 30 minutes. Bonus? It now comes in four finishes: Silver, starlight, space grey, and midnight.
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The new and improved MacBook Air also offers more than one charging option, with the all-new 35W compact power adapter with two USB-C ports. This way, users can now charger two devices at once.
MacBook Air with M2 starts at S$1,699 and S$1,549 for education.
The Updated 13-inch MacBook Pro
Ask any creative, and they’ll probably tell you that the 13-inch MacBook Pro has been their workhorse at some point in their lives. For this very reason, it’ll also be updated and upgraded with the M2 chip—making an already portable and powerful notebook even more impressive.
The new 13-inch MacBook Pro boast a faster 8-core CPY and 10-core GPU. This means that when working with RAW files in applications such as Affinity Photo, it’s nearly 40 percent faster that previous iterations. Unlike the new MacBook Air, this does with an active cooling systems so that it’ll be able to sustain its pro performance for longer periods of time.
The 13-inch MacBook Pro with M2 starts at S$1,879 and S$1,729 for education.
As anticipated, there’s a new iOS in town. The iOS 16 is perhaps Apple’s most impressive operating system to date. It seems as though they’ve been listening to consumers’ demands, and are giving them what they want. For starters, the LockScreen gets a facelift. It is now customisable: From font to colour selection and even themes, it’s all up to you. You can even set up several LockScreens, and simply swipe to change.
You’ll notice that notifications have been modified to roll up from the bottom, giving users a clear view of their personalised Lock Screen. And with the Focus feature, you can decide which notifications you’d like to receive depending on what you’re focusing on throughout the day on your LockScreen. For example: When you’re at work, you can set it up such that only work-related notifications come through and vice-versa. This works best with apps like Calendar, Mail, Messages and Safari.
iOS 16 also introduces major updates to Messages. iPhone users can now edit or recall recently sent messages and recover recently deleted messages as well as making conversations as unread so they can come back to them later.
Another uber cool feature is that Live Text is now extended to videos. This means that you can pause a video, activate Live Text and quickly convert currency, translate text, and more. Also interesting is the new Visual Look Up feature which allows iPhone users to tap and hold on the subject of an image to life it from the background and place it in apps like Messages.
One of the biggest announcements made on iOS 16 is definitely Apple Pay Later. It provides users in the United States with fuss-free and secure way to split the cost of an Apple Pay purchase in four equal payments spread over six weeks with zero interest and no additional fees. Users can also use Apple Wallet to track online order made using Apple Pay.