Apple is in the middle of presenting its WWDC 2018 keynote, and it's just announced the next major version of iOS is called iOS 12.
The company said iOS 12 will be available on all the same devices as iOS 11. This software update was optimised with Apple's chip team and is all about performance improvements, though there are a few other flashier features included. You can read all about what's new from here.
But, as a summary, you should know that Apple worked with Pixar to make a new file format for AR called USDZ. It works in multiple apps and even the web. Apple also announced a new AR tool called Measure. It can measure and detect real-world objects. Alongside all this AR stuff, Apple announced ARKit 2 with face tracking, realistic rendering, 3D object detection, persistent experiences, and shared experiences.
Moving along... Apple explained that the Photos app is gaining a new "For You" tab, similar to Apple Music, that will suggest editing tools to try. Apple also updated the Photos app so you can do multiple search terms. In terms of other Apple app news, the Apple Stocks app has been rebuilt - with Apple News tucked inside. And the News app is getting a new "Browse" tab, as well as a new sidebar on the iPad.
Both these apps are coming to iOS and Mac. Voice Memos has been completely rebuilt as well, and it's coming to the iPad and Mac. iCloud support will also be available so you can sync recordings, Apple added. And finally, the Apple Books app got a new name and a new design. For instance, a new "Reading now" section will show you where you were left off. More interestingly, Siri has been updated with Shortcuts.
Shortcuts is a new tool and app that essentially allows Siri to handle routines for the first time. Another big feature is that CarPlay is getting third-party navigation support, meaning Google Maps and Waze will soon be accessible from CarPlay. Oh, and Apple said grouped notifications are happening. You will be able to group notifications from same app into one and customise notifications from the lock screen.
Grouped notifications are part of Apple's digital well-being efforts, which also includes a new Screentime iOS feature that shows you how much you use your phone. You can get a weekly activity summary with a graph that shows how much time you're spending on your phone. It reminds us of the dashboard in Android P in that you can also set time limits for each app. If you have kids, you can set "allowances," too.
The last two major features involve Animoji and FaceTime. Animoji is getting an update to support Memoji, which is what happens when you make an Animoji of yourself. It's different from Bitmoji and Samsung's AR emoji - but also similar. With the new Memoji builder, you can select your skin colour, hair, and more. As for FaceTime, you can now finally do group FaceTime calls with up to 32 people.
Apple's WWDC 2018 conference is being held in San Jose, California from 4 June to 8 June at the McEnery Convention Center. The main keynote speech starts at 10am PST (6pm BST) on 4 June. Find out how to watch it live from our in-depth WWDC 2018 guide.
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