Apple’s biggest software event, WWDC 2021, has just wrapped up and the company announced a bunch of changes to all of its operating systems and… no new hardware. So for those of you waiting for new Macbooks, well… probably later on.
But even with no new devices, WWDC 2021 brought many exciting new changes with the highlights being new Notification Settings and Focus modes to help you easily switch between work, personal life and to just not get overwhelmed with notifications. Plus, you have much improved multitasking on iPad, as well as a few welcome improvements to watchOS such as a new Reflective mode in the Breathe app, as well as new workouts and health metrics.
There are lots of other new features in-between those major announcements, so read on below for our recap of everything new announced at WWDC 2021!
WWDC 2021 announcements:
Notification Summary | Focus Modes | App Privacy Report | Updated Weather, Maps, Wallet | Complete overhaul of Safari | Spotlight Search improvements | Facetime gets Portrait mode and link sharing
After last year’s big iOS 14 reveal with widgets and the App Library, iOS 15 did not quite feel like an overhaul, but with a big redesign to the way iOS handles notifications, it will be something that will surely affect millions and help users see their important notifications first and filter out less important notifications easier. Plus, Apple being Apple, we now get further improvements and privacy guarantees.
Notification settings and Notification Summary
The big change in notification settings in iOS 15 starts from the way notifications look: you will now see a small photo to each notification from a contact plus you get larger icons for apps, so you can easily tell which one is important with just a glance.
It’s important to know that messages and other important notifications won’t be part of that, so you won’t miss out on the important stuff. You will be then able to set a time to receive that Notification Summary, you can see it early in the morning or in the evening, whatever you prefer.
The other big change related to notifications is something Apple calls “Focus”. This is basically a custom mode with custom settings that will further filter out notifications. You can set a Work Focus when you’re at work, or furthermore, you can tell your iPhone to automatically switch to a Fitness Focus when you arrive at your gym location.
Apple showed four pre-set Focus modes as a suggestion: you can have the regular Do Not Disturb mode, a Personal focus mode, a Work focus, and a Sleep focus. And in a typical Apple fashion, all of those Focus modes are supported across devices, so if you set one device, it will sync with all other Apple devices automatically. You will be able to…