Apple WWDC 2022: Come for iOS 16, stay for the real OS


Apple fans are going to have to resist the temptation to get treatment and have the perfect summer Monday at the beach. The annual Global Developers Conference is back and this year’s edition could be a doozy.

CEO Tim Cook and the usual cast of Apple department heads will take the stage on June 6 at 10 a.m. PT / 1 p.m. ET to talk about all the latest software developments the company has to offer. To understand how to watch WWDC 2022 is pretty easy, but you can’t really get excited without knowing what to expect from the show.

Let me break it down for you. You can thank me later.


Like most years, we can walk around WWDC knowing full well that Apple is going to show us the next iterations of iOS, iPadOS, and more. I’ll get to that in a moment, but by far the most exciting rumor surrounding WWDC 2022 is the only thing that’s actually new: realityOS, the operating system that powers Apple’s long-running rumor mill. mixed reality headset.

It’s no secret that Apple wants in on the big AR/VR trend sweeping the tech world right now (although apparently not on the way Meta does), but a number of recent developments point to some kind of reveal at WWDC. Bloomberg reported last month that Apple executives have already tried out the device, although the same report noted that the planned reveal at WWDC may be delayed due to technical issues.

Even if the headset itself isn’t ready for prime time, Apple might still formalize its software environment at WWDC. The Verge spotted a branded app for “realityOS” for WWDC week, and a tech blogger Robert Scoble said WWDC would be the first of three major events tied to Apple’s mixed reality plans. Software now, hardware later.

This might explain why Apple Invitation to WWDC included a bunch of 3D character models.


No surprise here.
Credit: Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Sorry folks, but it’s time to get back to normal Apple stuff.

Apple showing iOS 16 at WWDC is about as likely as the sun rising in the morning. According Bloombergthis year’s iPhone software update will actually bring some pretty big changes.


Apple is still hard at work on its very first foldable device

Push notifications are reportedly getting some sort of overhaul, as is the Messages app. According to Bloomberg, the latter would get more social media features surrounding voice messages. However, it looks like the lock screen will undergo the biggest transformation of all: wallpapers with widget functions and an always-on lock screen that could show you the time and date without waking the phone would be in preparation for the next iPhone 14 .

Another feature Android enthusiasts can poke fun at Apple for stealing is the always-on lock screen. years later their favorite operating system started to include it.

iPadOS 16

iPads on display at the Apple Store

Apple’s tablets could be much better with this update.
Credit: Gabby Jones/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Tablet users are not doomed to WWDC 2022. If you’ve ever wanted your iPad to look more like a laptop, apparently now is your year.

Bloomberg reported that iPadOS 16 will bring improved multitasking features to iPads, such as the ability to resize and rearrange apps if you have two or three open at the same time. The UI will also be updated to make it easier to see what apps are open and switch between them, perhaps much like the dock on a Mac computer.

These would be big changes for the iPad lineup. Currently, it can split the screen of two apps while dedicating some screen real estate to a third, but it doesn’t offer the kinds of window resizing features that Mac users are used to by now. .

watch OS 9

Customer trying on Apple Watch in store

Apple Watch enthusiasts can also expect some news.
Credit: Brent Lewin/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Stop me if you’ve heard this before: Apple is going to show off the next version of its Apple Watch software and Bloomberg knows what to expect.

In his To light up newsletter, journalist Mark Gurman said watchOS 9 will introduce a host of new improvements to the Apple Watch experience. These include limited satellite connectivity for contacting emergency services, better female health tracking in the Health app, and a low-power mode to preserve your Apple Watch’s battery.

Of course, you can also expect additional workouts, watch faces, and maybe new sleep tracking features. Everything to make Apple Watch the ultimate health and fitness companion.

macOS 13

Row of Macs on display in store

Mac is back.
Credit: Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Apple can be associated primarily with iPhones and Ted Lasso in 2022, but it’s still an end-to-end IT business. With that in mind, Apple is expected to introduce the next iteration of macOS, even if it doesn’t appear to be a massive overhaul.

In the same Bloomberg report which outlined the aforementioned iOS 16 features, Gurman said Mac users can expect “redesigned apps” and a big overhaul of the System Preferences menu. The aim is apparently to make it more similar to the iPhone settings menu, apparently with individual apps having their own settings pages that you can access from a central menu.

Other than that, not much else is known. Personally, I’m very happy to hear what California-specific geological wonder Apple named the latest macOS after.


Apple TV 4K

Apple TV users may want to sign in.
Credit: Nina Riggio/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Apple’s most overlooked operating system could potentially see some time in the spotlight at WWDC 2022. After not showing up at last year’s event, the same Bloomberg report with updates iOS and macOS level also offered a very slight hint of what’s to come for tvOS.

Specifically, AppleTV devices will get “more smart home ties”. What this actually means is anyone’s guess, although additional connectivity with HomePod appliances are always welcome.

MacBook Air with an M2 chip

Apple M1 Ultra logo on laptop screen

Because 2 is better than 1.
Credit: Gabby Jones/Bloomberg via Getty Images

WWDC is not a hardware event, but Gurman’s great WWDC report mentioned a device that we could see: A new MacBook Air.

The big draw for the 2022 MacBook Air would be the inclusion of a new next-gen version of Apple’s in-house silicon called the M2. Mashable rented the Macbook Air M1 in 2020 to combine impressive performance with strong battery life, so hopefully a new M2 version of the same machine will improve those two aspects even more.

In summary, just about anything Apple shows off at WWDC 2022 will likely be something you’ve used before, just with a higher number at the end. Even though iOS 16, iPadOS 16, and the M2 MacBook Air all look amazing, none of them will be terribly surprising. This gives realityOS a real chance to blow us away, considering it might be the only totally new thing Apple is showing off.

Until Apple’s vision of mixed reality includes virtual meetings with Mark ZuckerbergI will be satisfied.


How to watch Apple’s WWDC 2022 keynote live


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