Last week, Apple hosted their 23rd World Wide Developer’s Conference (WWDC 2012), and we were lucky enough to be able to attend as representatives of Hanson’s engineering team. In addition to Apple’s hardware updates, which included a new MacBook Pro with retina display, a number of announcements around their software platforms were made. While we can’t share the details of all of these changes, here are a few upcoming features that may interest you.
Greater Share Integration
In addition to Twitter integration, which was added in iOS 5, iOS 6 will include Facebook integration as a core component of the OS, which will allow users to share content in your applications more easily. Users will also be able to access their contact list on their iOS device, indicate apps that they “like” in iTunes, and share links to applications with their friends more easily. Beyond supporting just another service, the new OS allows applications to extend the system with additional social sharing services as they become available. Sharing is an easy way to get your content to a wider audience, and this update should make that easier than ever.
We have designed and built a number of kiosk apps for clients. Now a new feature in iOS called Guided Access will make developing these applications much faster. By easily allowing an administrator to lock the home button and turn off controls for an application, Guided Access will streamline the process of securing an application. If you are thinking about making a kiosk application for a tradeshow or showroom, Guided Access is likely to be a perfect fit.
Lastly, Passbook is a new feature in iOS 6 that allows applications to create passes paid for via the user’s iTunes account, and which are then stored in a common location on the user’s iPhone, almost like a virtual wallet. This allows users to buy things like movie tickets, airline tickets, or even coffee gift cards, and have those tickets show up in their passbook automatically. Passbook would be pretty useful from a purchasing standpoint alone, but it goes a step further by integrating with the iPhone’s location awareness to streamline the process even more. Passes can be triggered according to location so that, for instance, a user’s movie tickets pop up automatically as they enter a theatre or their gift card shows up to be scanned as they enter a store.
These features just scratch the surface of what we learned last week at WWDC. If you are interested in adding features like these to your applications, or have another app that you need developed, please get in touch. We’re excited to put these new features to work!