Apple WDC 2020

Initial thoughts

Published 08:05 23rd June 2020 (UK Time)

A veritable cornucopia of announcements from Apple yesterday. Here’s my initial summary. I’ll add more thoughts and will continue to curate and update this page as I digest what was presented.

I’ve included bullet points for what was announced below. Also there’s a really good Tech Crunch 4 minute video summary at the bottom.


  • Introduces App Library that auto arranges your apps into convenient groups
  • Improved Widgets that are resizable
  • Siri improvements, including translate and more device controls. (Straying more into Samsung Bixby territory).
  • Improved messages app that includes mentions (Think @ on Twitter)
  • Improved Carplay, including support of new apps for Parking & finding food.
  • Digital Car Key, that replaces the one that came with the car.
  • App Clips. Little app stubs that let you quickly use apps that aren’t yet installed
  • Improved privacy information (developers have to report detailed privacy policy in the App Store)
  • Cameras
    • Activity Zones which filter out areas of the image that should not trip alarms
    • Face recognition that integrates with home pod to announce who’s at the door
    • Live view on Apple Tc when someone rings the door bell


  • New Sidebar for Photos that improves browsing
  • Improved Siri
  • Compact Call Notifications
  • Redesigned Search, rebuilt from the ground up to be universal.
  • Improved pencil support
    • Shape Completion
    • Improved handwriting recognition
    • Write in any text field


  • Smart switching between apps
  • Intelligent Spatial Audio (Surround Sound)


  • Improved configurable watch faces
  • Watch face sharing
  • Cycling directions
  • Sleep tracking
  • Wind down (helping you prepare for bed, don’t thing it turns back the sheets) & Wake up.
  • Automatic detection of how long you’ve been washing your hands

MacOS (Big Sur)

  • Redesigned Finder
  • Control Centre brought to Mac
  • Re-Invented Notification Centre
  • Redesigned Widgets
  • Safari
    • Privacy report button for websites
    • Securely monitors stored passwords against data breaches
    • Support for Web Extensions
    • Page Preview on hovering over tabs
    • Translation on demand from search bar button

Mac Architecture (ARM)

Mac architecture transitions to Apple Silicon, basically Apple’s own ARM derived chips. Brings better power management & performance.

All Apple apps running natively on Silicon from day 1. It sounds like the same will be true of Microsoft & Adobe apps for the Mac.

The first Silicon Macs will be released towards the end of 2020 and transition of the full line up will take about two years. Intel Macs will continuer to be supported for years to come.

Common Architecture Across all Products

iPhone & iPad apps will run natively on Silicon Macs. Seems like Apple have given up on Tim Cooks assertion that Macs & iPhones are a different as fridges and toasters and are now chasing the same universal platform nirvana that Microsoft aimed at with UWP.

Universal 2

“A new type of universal binary that works on both Intel based Macs and Macs based on Apple Silicon. Sounds a bit like .Net/MSIL to me.

Developer Tool Kit

Basically a Mac Mini available to developers from this week for developing on the new Silicon platform. I’ve not seen anything in costs yet.

Tech Crunch Summary of day 1

Tech Crunch is a great source of technical news…

One reply on “Apple WDC 2020”

This is a great summary. A minute or two here has given me enough information to decide if there’s anything I want to investigate further.
I’m certainly interested to see how the new ARM chips perform and also how they manage to reduce the danger of the potentially dangerous stuff (e.g. car key replacement, in-car apps, cycling directions).

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