WWDC 2024

It seems to have become my annual tradition to gripe about each year's WWDC. In fact, I realized I had started the last year's post with almost the same sentiment. When I watched the first half of this year's keynote, I was nearly ready to express my disappointment once again. However, my perspective shifted when they introduced Apple Intelligence.

Machine learning, AI, and GenAI are becoming increasingly popular. In fact, my company also claims to be an ML company—and it truly is. Every day, we see a surge of fascinating AI applications. However, we still lack well-established best practices, with endless possibilities in models, systems, and architectures. At this year's WWDC, Apple might have set a great reference for everyone to follow.

Many people focused on how many apps Apple "sherlocked" at this year's WWDC. That might be true to some extent, but it isn't the whole story. 

  • Last year, many predicted the Apple Journal app would spell the end for Day One, but I still use and love Day One. This is mainly because the Apple Journal app is only available on iPhone, while I prefer writing my daily journal on my Mac.
  • Similarly, I might switch from Alltrails to Apple Maps for National Park trail courses—not because Apple Maps is free, but because Alltrails drains my battery too quickly and its offline experience (which is often needed in National Parks) is lacking; I always feel frustrated when I see the sharing pop-ups when I have no network reception.
  • I love Grammarly's smooth integration with macOS, but sometimes it is too aggressive and disrupts my writing experience. Therefore, I might give the new Writing Tools a try to see if they improve my overall experience.

I believe Apple Intelligence's new features will significantly enhance the user experience within the Apple ecosystem. If an app's appeal lies solely in those features, it won't stay competitive for long—others will simply replicate it anyway. However, if an app excels in delivering a superior user experience, it will continue to thrive. Apple's new features could help these apps focus even more on their users, ensuring they maintain their edge. Moreover, incorporating Apple Intelligence could be a more cost-effective solution for startups, encouraging them to consider the Apple ecosystem more seriously. This is also a smart strategy for Apple.

Despite the exciting announcements, I can't help but feel some regret about this year's WWDC. It seemed to cater more to markets and users rather than developers. This sentiment wasn't fueled by the rejection email for the keynote watch event or my loss of the chance to camp out at 2 am for the keynote. It became clear when I saw Apple tech celebrities mingling with YouTubers like MKBHD (though I love him). This highlighted WWDC's target audience and left me feeling that developers were being sidelined. It was just sad.