Apple to tout Digital Health, augmented-reality features at software conference

Delia Walker
June 4, 2018

Slashgear claimed Apple might have a new MacBook Pro to show off.

As for hardware, everyone is hoping to see the final release of Apple's multi-device wireless charging pad AirPower, which was announced in a keynote a year ago, but has been notably missing from any Apple-related news since.

While it's unlikely we'll see a new iPhone at WWDC, the event could be the ideal place for Apple to reveal its eagerly awaited wireless charging system, called AirPower.

In other announcements, there have been rumours of a new version of the company's iPhone SE being in development, which could also be unveiled at the conference, as could a rumoured cheaper version of the HomePod smart speaker. There are now 40 such Apple products available, 33% more than Apple offered five years ago.

One problem is the sheer number of devices that Apple sells. The company is working on refreshes to the MacBook Pro and 12-inch MacBook with new Intel Corp. chips, and is planning a new low-priced laptop to succeed MacBook Air.

In fact, Apple employees are already testing the NFC technology on their iPhone to unlock doors at the company's headquarters, according to The Information, which, citing sources familiar with the matter, first reported on the NFC changes coming down the pike. The previous iteration of Apple's smartphone operating system wasn't received warmly by customers, and the company will be looking to improve on it.

At WWDC in 2016, I got to see real time blood sugar monitors that were being developed to work in tandem with the Apple Watch. That's especially important as Apple is preparing another big push for the wearable hardware later this year. They also get to talk directly with Apple's engineers about their own apps and projects. There also might be some news about Apple's streaming service.

Earlier this week, Apple updated the HomePod with stereo and multiroom music listening modes and the ability to add calendar appointments. Just like with any major iOS update, Apple is rolling it OTA (over the air) which means that iPhone owners need to keep their eyes peeled at the notifications panel because the update should arrive anytime now.

Apple's Siri voice assistant avoids a lot of the splashy headlines about privacy issues that Amazon's Alexa and the Google Assistant seem to generate.

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