On the eve of WWDC 2020

Tomorrow afternoon, the strangest WWDC ever will take place as a completely virtual event.

This WWDC is not only strange because of the timing and the surrounding effect of the coronavirus, but also because of a giant battle between developers and Apple that occurred throughout the last week (as well as the largest PR screwup in the company's history, in my opinion). I've been tweeting some good stuff about it, in addition to an article I wrote here - I encourage you to learn more about it. All I can say is I hope Apple thought of a better way to address it coming into tomorrow's keynote.

But, on to more positive things. Tomorrow is WWDC and I am excited nonetheless. Here's what I've been hearing in the final hours leading up to the event.

  • Multiple sources reported today that there would be no hardware announcements at WWDC. I thought as much in my preview, except for one exception, which was the iMac, though I found it unlikely the hardware would actually be launched at the event. Ming-Chi Kuo said today that the major iMac update would be amongst the first ARM devices. It is possible Apple previews the device with a launch later this year. Additionally, as I reported, a minor refresh to the current iMac will likely silently launch soon after the event.

  • I can now say with a good degree of confidence that macOS 10.16 will include emulation for x86 apps on the ARM build of the OS. This means developers will not necessarily have to rush to make their apps compatible, but likely also means users will have sub-par app quality when using the ARM machines in the early days. (Even the best emulator will not be on par with native performance)

  • I still expect there to be a desktop development kit, but have not heard anything since my preview.

  • Word on the street is iPhone OS is the new iOS. We'll see about that.

  • HomePodOS, or whatever fork of iOS it runs, will support third party music streaming services.