My name is Rufus and I am a software engineer at Linknode. After watching the live stream of Apple’s “Special Event” and being interested in some of the new products I thought I would write a small blog post to share my thoughts with the world!
As someone who primarily uses iOS devices I am mostly interested in changes that help make the device easier to use and improve productivity. iOS 9 brings a lot of improvements in these regards. Some of my favourites are listed below.
iOS 9 was announced and will be available on 16th September 2015.
Split Screen Multitasking
This feature allows users to place multiple apps on the screen at once. This will be useful in a whole host of situations, when you want to read a website while reading an email, taking notes or reading email while chatting to someone via the Messages app.
iCloud Drive App
This feature seems to provide iOS with a dropbox-like functionality. You can now browse the contents of your iCloud account and view, move, delete or share files using the “iCloud Drive” app. For me, I don’t think this will replace the way I use dropbox for storing and sharing files.
Notes App Improvements
I already use this app a lot to take notes and they sync automatically across all of my devices and are uploaded to my email account. The improvements to notes include better text formatting tools, being able to insert rich content such as images and a new drawing tool.
VentusAR 4.1 will support iOS 9 when it released – we are still on target for a release in mid September.
Two of the new devices that were announced at the Apple event are: iPhone 6S and iPad Pro.
I am mostly excited about the new “3DTouch” feature that will be available on the new iPhones. During the event, one of the clips shown demonstrated the uses of 3DTouch – a feature that allows the user to quickly preview content without having to fully transition to another screen. This seemed great for quickly previewing images or taking a quick peak at your calendar etc. If I had an iPhone 6S, this is definitely a feature I would be making the most of! The new devices were also said to be much faster than the previous generation of iPhones, with a 70 percent faster processor and 90 percent faster graphics.
This is the largest iPad to date, with a 12.9-inch screen that has 5.6 million pixels.
One of the accessories announced for the iPad Pro was the “Apple Pencil”. This is a battery powered stylus which is recharged by plugging it directly into the iPad Pro. The sensors in both the pencil and iPad’s screen work together to respond to the angle and pressure of the pencil to simulate a true writing or drawing instrument. The have clearly invested a lot into the Apple pencil, and I am interested to see how this compares with the current high-end graphics tablets available from companies like Wacom.
Apple also boasted about the performance of this new iPad – claiming that it is “faster than 80% of the portal PCs that shipped in the last 12 months”, and that in graphics tasks it is “faster than 90% of them”. There was no mention about the amount of memory in the device, but rumors suggest it contains 4GB of memory. This is twice times as much as the iPad Air 2.
What does this means for Linknode and VentusAR? Well the larger screen size and huge performance increases will enable richer and more complex visualisations that were not possible on the previous devices. The larger screen size will also aid in communicating visualisations to larger groups of people. We plan to support the iPad Pro soon after it is launched in November 2015.
It is an exciting time to be both a user and developer of Apple products and I am excited to see what is possible with the new range of devices and operating system.