What Apple needs to do in 2016 [post-WWDC]

Many think that Apple is no longer innovating as it used to. That may be partially true, because Apple is following Google and Microsoft in regards to putting more focus on services. However, that doesn't change the fact, that some things should be improved, or downright fixed.



Siri



Siri was introduced way back with the announcement of the iPhone 4S, but Apple has been adding a few new features year by year. At this years WWDC Apple announced 3rd party apps will be able to work with Siri. Well, sort of. There apps of given types (like ride sharing and social networks) will be able to use new Siri commands, but it still doesn't make the whole ecosystem as open as Google's. By the way, Google has announced third party app support for Google Now with voice search roughly a year ago. On one hand, I do understand why Apple does things this way. If they ease into things slowly, there is a higher chance of the whole system not becoming a mess, but they should have started sooner. Now, they can keep the pace and be outrun by competition or announce more new radical features, which means a huge risk.

padOS


iPad needs to get a dedicated operating system, period. There is nothing more frustrating, in my opinion, than the fact, that iPad is an extremely capable device, but the software limits its potential. Especially on the iPad Pro. I have just finished a big school project on the 12.9" Pro and working with mobile OS sometimes feels so cumbersome. Just to name a few features, which are absolutely necessary and possible to implement: Multiple User Accounts, better keyboard and mouse support, better multitasking, "real" file system... I think you get the point.

iOS


Basically, all updates to all the operating systems for Apple devices were introduced at WWDC, but the most emphasis (and time) was clearly put into iOS 10. It's a bit cleaner, more functional and more open to developers than ever, but these new features also bring confusion. To keep the overall user experience familiar, Apple is once again sticking with the "boring" grid layout of apps on the home screen. However, that doesn't necessary make the operating system easy to understand. For example, there are widgets on the lock screen, in Notification Center, in Control Center (since there is music control and a whole page dedicated to controlling smart home devices via Home Kit), on the home screen (page #0) and accessible when you 3D Touch a supported app. Isn't that a bit too much. The designers should step away for a moment and organize things a bit, because right now, there are many similar features scattered all around the system.

Apple Watch 2


The first Apple Watch has been a weird product so far. It sold quite well in the beginning, but more than a year later, the initial boom is definitely over. Fitness tracking is becoming a clear market, so in my opinion, the Watch should be able to track more activities. Right now, it's very good at tracking all-day movement, walking, and running. Cycling is all right, but even on slightly bumpy roads, it loses HR information. The Sport version, should absolutely be water-proof for swimming and should GPS for better tracking without your phone. On the software side, a lot seems to be cleaned up with watchOS 3, but Apple should finally open up the watch face to developers. It's nice, that we can have different complications, but if done properly, 3rd party watch face designs could make the watch better looking and more functional at the same time. Plus, always-on time should be an option in the settings, because despite the gesture to turn on the display being very sensitive, sometimes you want to see the time without moving your wrist at all.

iPhone 7


This is a clear one. iPhone 7 needs to be interesting and exciting. Apple hasn't made any dramatic changes to the iPhone since the introduction (apart from them getting bigger), but all the rumors point to the fact, that we shouldn't expect anything out of the ordinary in the 2016 model year. Apple is apparently saving up the new stuff for 2017, which is the 10th anniversary of the handset.

Apple TV = 4K + WiFi router


The latest iPhones record 4K video. The latest Apple TV can't play 4K video. Enough said for the first part. The second is, Apple TV could be something more than a box for streaming media. Why can't it also act as a WiFi router, even at the cost of being more expensive and bigger. Why can't it be better at acting like hub for controlling the smart home?

Polish & Quality control


The last one is the most sad one. Each tech company has (at least slightly) a different solution to a problem. That is fantastic, because users have more choices to choose from. The catch is, that I Apple no longer is as good as it used to be in terms of polish and quality control. Of course, mistakes can and do happen, but there were many instances, where even an incremental software update broke some features or decreased overall stability, battery life, and performance of a given device. That shouldn't happen in 2016. And if it does, you shouldn't be left waiting for a fix for more than a couple of days.

Professionals


Even though I am an enthusiast, I am all for simplicity and minimalism, but... Apple has been known for creating high-quality professional products. What's offered today? The extremely expensive Mac Pro considering its, by computer standards, ancient internals, and Final Cut Pro X, which hasn't seen a major revamp in a while. And don't even get me started on the new iPads. Putting the word "Pro" into the name doesn't make them any better for professionals, but Apple can ask 100 $ more per unit.

Something new



It's far too early for the Apple Car, but could the big A bring something exciting to get people talking about how innovative and different it is again? Let me know in the comments...

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