Author’s Note: I personally owe you all an apology. Earlier this morning, I’d written a story about why Apple wouldn't be providing a live stream of Monday’s WWDC 2013 keynote. At that particular time, Apple had its WWDC app available on the iOS App Store, but it hadn't listed a live stream option for the 2013 keynote. The Apple TV app for WWDC 2013 was also not yet available, nor was the link to the live stream hosted directly on Apple’s website, which was posted at 8:30 a.m. EDT. We have updated the previous article with this new information, which is explained in further detail below. Thank you for your patience and understanding. Now for the good stuff.
Apple will -- ahem -- indeed host several live stream options for its 2013 Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) annual keynote address, which begins promptly at 10 a.m. PDT (1 p.m. EDT) from San Francisco's Moscone West Convention Center. At the keynote, Apple CEO Tim Cook will take the stage to help announce, among other things, new iOS and Mac OS X software, some potentially exciting hardware announcements surrounding the Mac, the company's long-awaited music streaming service iRadio, and a few potential surprises.
To live stream the Apple keynote, users have three main options. For Web users, Apple is planning to broadcast the WWDC 2013 keynote on its Safari browser, which requires a Mac running OS X 10.6 or later. For mobile users, Apple will also live stream the keynote via Safari to iOS devices, including iPhone, iPad, iPad mini and iPod Touch, on any device running iOS 4.2 or later. Apple has also decided to restore its “Apple Events” app on Apple TV, and any owners of a second- or third-generation Apple TV will be able to watch the keynote there starting at 10 a.m. PDT. For more information as soon as it breaks, we'll be covering the WWDC 2013 keynote all afternoon so please follow our live coverage page, as well as our WWDC 2013 live blog.
WWDC 2013: Previewing The Keynote
Apple's WWDC 2013 keynote is expected to unveil, among other things, new software for iOS and Mac OS X -- as confirmed by the various colorful banners erected around the Moscone West Convention Center late last week – the company’s long-awaited, music-streaming service iRadio, as well as some potentially exciting hardware announcements surrounding the Mac, including new MacBook Pro and Air laptops, and a completely redesigned Mac Pro, which is traditionally Apple’s largest, most-powerful desktop computer.
First, let's talk iOS 7. Apple has released a new iOS each year since the first iPhone in 2007, and WWDC 2013 will be no different. But unlike past years, where iOS 5 and iOS 6 added functionality to the same design, iOS 7 is expected to introduce major visual and functional changes to the iPhone and iPad experience for the very first time.
Since longtime iOS chief Scott Forstall was shown the door in October, lead Apple designer Jonathan "Jony" Ive has taken over “human interface” duties at the company, which includes all software lines, but particularly iOS. Ive has reportedly spent a great deal of time redesigning iOS for iOS 7, removing many of its skeuomorphic aspects -- those ornamental elements that serve only as decorative metaphors rather than functional features, like the lines on the yellow Notes app and the wood grain texture on the iBooks and Newsstand apps -- and replacing them with “flat,” simple features and textures. For more on iOS 7, check out some alleged screenshots of the new mobile OS in action, the 11 features we’re hoping to see in iOS 7, as well as the 9 improvements to Siri we’re hoping to see when Apple unveils iOS 7 at WWDC 2013.
Apple iOS 7 may be the most popular part of the keynote, many longtime users are looking forward to the latest build of Mac OS X, either 10.9 or 11.0. We don't know the name of this year's build -- whether it's a big cat for OS X, or a new ocean-centric naming scheme based on those OS X wave banners erected late last week -- but we do know that Apple's been working on this build for awhile. According to 9to5Mac, Apple began developing Mac OS X 10.9 simultaneously with last year’s OS X Mountain Lion, which similarly sought to integrate more iOS features into the Mac experience, such as the Notification Center, Notes, Reminders and Dictation, as well as document syncing in iCloud.
As Apple continues to tie iOS and OS X closer together, we are largely expecting Apple to release Siri and Apple Maps -- its two most-used applications on iOS -- in Mac OS X 10.9, as well as to introduce iBooks and Newsstand to the Mac, while ensuring the new Mac design mirrors the new simplified experience in iOS 7. We’re also expecting Apple to gift some of its power users with some added functionality in the Finder, as well as with the ability to port full-screen applications to multiple displays.
In other software news, we believe WWDC 2013 will be Apple's chance to finally introduce its iRadio music-streaming service. In 2012, iRadio rumors heated up and suddenly dissipated as deals with the major record companies reportedly stagnated. Then, in January, BTIG analyst Richard Greenfield said the iRadio was back on, and that Apple was close to finishing its Spotify-like music-streaming service, which is said to communicate with a user’s iTunes Store account and Genius software to suggest music for listening or purchasing.
While it’s unclear whether the iRadio service will be free or require a subscription, Apple is said to have incorporated its iAd advertising platform to then share part of the ad revenue with the record labels. With the last of the major record companies signing on a few days ago, it looks like Apple is finally clear to introduce the iRadio at the WWDC 2013 keynote, according to AllThingsD. Not-so-coincidentally, the Sony Corp. (NYSE:SNE) was also the final holdout when Jobs originally tried to seal the deal with the iTunes Store.
Moving from software to hardware, we've heard Apple will introduce a handful of new Macs at WWDC 2013, including upgrades to its MacBook Air and Retina MacBook Pro lines, as well as a completely redesigned Mac Pro, as described by last week's MacRumors report. We’re frankly surprised Apple hasn’t released the new Mac Pro even sooner, considering how Apple can no longer sell the computer in Europe, given a new regulatory guideline that went into effect on March 1. Regarding specs of these computers, we're not sure what to expect regarding Apple's only tower desktop, but we have heard Apple will endow its newest MacBook Air and Retina MacBook Pro with the new fourth-generation Haswell processors from the Intel Corp. (NASDAQ:INTC), while making the 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro a bit thinner, too.
We don't honestly believe we'll see more hardware at WWDC 2013 besides the new MacBooks and Mac Pro, but there's a chance Apple will announce its fifth-generation iPad at Monday’s event. That said, rumors of the tablet have been floating around for months, and one case maker -- citing “inside sources” -- has gone all in on iPad 5 rumors by launching new iPad 5 cases based on rumored specifications long before the tablet is even announced. The iPad 5 is said to be a bit shorter and narrower than the iPad 4, and to be built similar to the iPad mini with a dark aluminum finish, tapered edges and extremely thin side bezels, which reduce the overall size of the tablet without affecting the 9.7-inch Retina display. We’ve been hearing about this iPad for months, so it’s possible Apple will simply release this redesigned tablet to accompany the release of iOS 7.
But if you thought seeing a new iPad at WWDC 2013 was an outside shot, there's a chance, albeit minuscule, that we'll finally get a first peek at the iWatch, which is Apple’s take on the superspy wristwatch has been rumored for some time now. By choosing to unveil the iWatch at WWDC, Apple would once again be a major attention stealer for the next six months until its alleged release date in late 2013 -- just in time for the holidays.
The Apple iWatch will reportedly work with one's iPhone or Android smartphone via Bluetooth to essentially work as an extension of one's phone, but with added abilities to track one’s general exercise and provide important user feedback. But with the iOS at one's fingertips, the iWatch could also control one’s music and various notifications from the phone's apps, such as its calendar, Facebook or Twitter, directly on the watch’s tiny display. With Bluetooth leveraging most of the functionality to one's smartphone, plus the ability to store data in the cloud with iCloud, an iWatch wouldn’t need massive storage in order to use Siri, Apple Maps or even FaceTime. Ever since the Kickstarter-funded Pebble E-Paper Watch proved last April there's a huge market -- to the tune of $10 million -- for wearable devices that sync with one's smartphone, everyone and their cousin is working on a smart watch. Now, it's all about who unveils it first, and also who unveils it best. With rivals Google Inc. (Nasdaq:GOOG) and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (KRX:005935) allegedly beginning work on their own smartwatches, Apple has reportedly begun the process of producing 1.5-inch organic light-emitting diode (OLED) touch-sensitive displays to build roughly 1,000 units of the iWatch, which isn’t nearly enough for mass production, but is enough for a small-scale trial, or possibly even an unveiling. With its release date expected this year, Apple could cause jaws to drop by unveiling this enticing wearable device at WWDC 2013 in advance of a full iWatch announcement just before its alleged November release date.
Do you plan on watching the live stream of the WWDC 2013 keynote? Are you more interested in iOS 7, updates to OS X, or the new Macs? What products are you hoping Apple unveils? Let us know in the comments section below.