Apple’s Major Announcements During WWDC 2009 Keynote

Apple held the keynote kick-off of its Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) with a few major announcements. However, not much of it was really earth-shattering.

I followed the WWDC keynote via gdgt’s live blog and ArsTechnica’s live blog. Both Web sites did a good job of reporting what was going on, complete with photos of the presentation.

The keynote started with announcements about the new MacBook Pro lineup. While the specs and the costing are impressive when compared to the previous lineup of MacBooks, the technology tops out considerably lower than PC notebooks do at this point. The new pricing, though, does make the MacBooks competitive with PC notebooks.

The next part of the keynote focused on the new version of Mac OS, which is being called “Snow Leopard.” Apple harped on the fact that all of their core apps have been redeveloped specifically for 64-bit processors.

They did drop a little nugget that came as a surprise to me (though, I don’t spend a lot of time following Apple’s tech updates) in that they will be selling the new OS as an upgrade for $29.

From there, they moved onto showing off the new iPhone firmware and the new iPhone itself. At this point, it became rather difficult to determine what updates were going to be available for the iPhone 3G and which were only going to work on the new iPhone 3GS. It wasn’t until later that I was able to sort things out. For instance, even though the 3G is fully capable of capturing video; apparently that feature will only be available on the 3GS.

Some of the announcements about the iPhone 3.0 firmware included:

  • Tethering for basically everyone but AT&T customers (already announced)
  • Cut/copy/paste across applications (the cut/copy/paste was already announced, but I was still unsure whether it would work across apps)
  • Landscape keyboard for more apps, including mail (already announced)
  • Multimedia messaging for basically everyone but AT&T customers (already announced)
  • Faster version of Safari
  • Wider language support
  • “Find my iPhone” for MobileMe customers
  • Improved support for peripheral devices
  • Push updates available for all apps, not just mail

The new 3GS will also support video capture, voice commands (for dialing and iPod features) and more.

The new iPhone 3.0 firmware for the iPhone and the iPod Touch will be released on June 17. iPod Touch users will be required to pay $9.95 if they want to upgrade. There is still no word as to whether or not there will be a grace period for people that buy their Touches between now and then (or even for people that buy their Touches after June 17 that may have already had the 2.x firmware loaded).