At WWDC, Apple shows it is building connections between its desktop and mobile operating systems. Apple is fortifying its position by opening up new opportunities for developers.
On Monday, Apple introduced new versions of its desktop and mobile operating systems, OS X 10.10 and iOS 8, respectively. The free software will be offered to consumers this fall but is available to developers in beta form now.
At Apple's 25th Worldwide Developer Conference in San Francisco, CEO Tim Cook arrived on stage to celebrate and thank Apple's developer community, which has surpassed 9 million developers, up almost 50% from last year.
He took a moment to ridicule Windows, noting that while 51% of Apple's 80 million user installed base had updated to OS X 10.9 Mavericks, only 14% of Microsoft customers had updated to the latest version of Windows.
Cook took a swipe at Android, as well, noting that half the company's new customers in China had switched to iOS from Android devices. "They had bought an Android phone, by mistake, and had then sought a better experience and a better life," he said, and even though 89% of iOS customers were using the most recent version of iOS, only 9% of Android users were using the latest version of Android.
This matters to developers interested in using new operating system features in their apps. Users of legacy versions of operating systems can't take advantage of features based on new technology.
Craig Federighi, senior vice president of software engineering, said Apple OS X 10.10 will be called "Yosemite," after joking about the possibility of OS X "Weeds." The desktop software features a revised user interface that borrows heavily from iOS with a new dark look. Its Spotlight search app has been freed from a fixed place in the menu and will become much more important to local and browser-based search -- Spotlight search suggestions now show up in response to Safari searches. Consider this the groundwork for challenging Google Search.
As if to validate former CEO Steve Jobs's view that Dropbox is a feature, not a product, OS X "Yosemite" includes iCloud Drive, an expansion of Apple's iCloud storage service that provides access to iOS documents and synchronizes files across Apple devices and Windows devices.
This article continues on EE Times' sister site InformationWeek.