Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Rightpoint Reacts to Apple Worldwide Developer Conference

Justin Kaufman
Technology / Strategy

This blog was co-authored by Kelly Martin, Account Director

Apple recently announced their latest products at the annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) ) in San Jose. Several members of the Rightpoint team were in attendance. Keeping tabs on the major technology players and latest developments is an important part of how we help our clients build the best possible customer experiences.

Beyond what experiences new technologies enable, there’s a marketing angle to updating apps with the latest technology. Apple frequently features apps in the App Store that leverage new platform features such as Siri shortcuts or augmented reality. Being featured in the App Store is a great way to drive awareness of your application to a larger audience and establish your brand as a leader in innovation. Some recent developments set a new bar for functionality that users will soon come to expect from every app.

Below are the key updates from WWDC 2019 that you should know about along with how these changes may impact your product roadmap. Adopting new technologies builds loyalty among users, establishes your brand as a mobile leader, and increases the odds of getting featured by Apple.

Dark Mode

Overview:

iOS now features a Dark Mode to match that on macOS. Dark Mode switches the system to a dark color scheme that many users prefer for nighttime use.

What this means for your app:

All apps should support a darker color scheme. Any app that fails to adopt it will feel tacky or broken to anyone using Dark Mode. Some users may even limit themselves to using apps that support this new setting.

iPad Changes

Overview:

Apple introduced several major enhancements to the iPad user experience, including the ability to pin widgets to the home screen, create multiple windows of the same app, connect external storage like thumb drives, navigate keyboard shortcuts, and perform gestures for undo/redo and copy/paste. Apple also announced that iPad apps will run on macOS with minimal changes.

What this means for your app:

Pad isn’t just a big iPhone anymore. It's a desktop-class computer for getting work done. Consumers expect apps to support to the full range of iPad and macOS abilities, including drag-and-drop, advanced multitasking, and keyboard shortcuts. Soon, they'll expect apps and data to seamlessly follow them from their phone to their tablet and Mac.

Standalone Watch Apps

Overview:

Apple Watch users can now browse for new watch apps from their wrist. Watch apps can now run untethered from iPhone, downloading data, responding to voice commands, and presenting notifications just like any full-sized app on your phone. In addition, Apple expanded the watch’s health capabilities, including menstrual cycle tracking, noise exposure monitoring, and activity trends.

What this means for your app:

With these changes, an entirely new class of wearable apps became possible and users will be looking in the WatchOS App Store to see what is available. We suggest rethinking your customer experience from the perspective of an Apple Watch user; what capabilities can you embrace to improve your life and promote loyalty to your app or service? Delivering a stellar watch experience will increase your app’s discoverability and appeal.

Siri

Overview:

Siri now supports voice-driven workflows that leverage multiple apps to fulfill users’ requests.

What this means for your app:

Your app should support Siri by exposing common actions for voice control. It's important that when a user calls upon your app for help, it’s there to serve them.

ARKit

Overview:

Thanks to an augmented reality scene-authoring tool and other new capabilities introduced in iOS 13, developers can author augmented reality experiences and attach them to real-world scenes. New developments include body-detection and motion capture as well as simultaneous capture of the user’s face and environment. It’s now possible to preview how virtual objects will look in your home or on your body and buy them with Apple Pay from any website with no app download required.

What this means for your app:

We’ve seen a huge increase in the adoption of augmented reality as a key revenue driver in mobile commerce. IOS 13 lowers the barrier of entry for augmented reality experiences and sets the stage for Apple to introduce AR glasses in the future. Companies that develop compelling augmented reality interactions will undoubtedly capture a huge amount of mindshare and purchase volume as the category matures. Using Apple’s ARKit and Machine Learning, we are helping Angry Orchard teach the world about cider through augmented reality. You can read more about this work here.

Sign In with Apple

Overview:

Consumers have grown more attentive to privacy and how companies share their data. Apple introduced a new feature, ‘Sign in with Apple’, in a bid to build consumer confidence that data will be protected. Users reveal no personal information when they register for an app or service using “Sign in with Apple.” That means no spam, charges, or identity theft. In exchange, Apple provides app developers a super simple registration option and tools to detect and combat fake users. Apps that allow users to register using an existing account, such as Twitter or Facebook, will be required to offer “Sign in with Apple” as an option.

What this means for your app:

Social sign-in was long considered the easiest way to register new users in app. With “Sign in with Apple,” users now have an even easier option that avoids passwords, eliminates email verification steps, and protects from spam and abuse. While “Sign in with Apple” should increase app registrations and improve trust between apps and users, it will require some work to support and compromise certain analytics techniques to track users.

These are just a few of the announcements coming out of WWDC 2019. We are excited to partner with our clients on strategy for digital products and experiences. Keeping an eye on emerging trends and having the ability to leverage the newest tech to make the best products is a huge part of what makes coming to work each day exciting for us. If you want to discuss how these updates might apply to your app or want to learn more about our Mobile & Emerging Tech practice, please contact us here.

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