This is what WWDC 2021 can expect

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Image: Apple – We know only two things of WWDC21 with certainty. The first is to launch a conference on virtual developers on June 7th at ten a.m. PDT/1 p.m. EDT. The second is what the company has in store for the latest iOS, macOS and its other platforms.

Apple is notoriously confidential, besides that. The only indication in the email addressed to journalists was that the company announced “the latest technologies and software.” This is all right. This is all right. Don’t worry, the rumor mill in Apple will never stop buzzing. We aren’t in the dark entirely. Certainly, some surprises are bound to be here, but so far on Monday, you can see everything.

Photo: Caitlin McGarry/Gizmodo

Read more: Apple WWDC 2021: Watching and expecting

Do you have iOS 15?

IOS 14 was an enormous update that included the labeling of privacy, the widgets, the images, the app library, and more. In 2020, that’s meaningful, it’s a big whole year for Apple. But big changes are a lot of work, so it wouldn’t be surprising if this time Apple kept iterative.

A recent Bloomberg report says iOS 15 will make notification changes. In particular, the ability for your driving, sleeping, working etc. to set preferred conditions based on your current status. The ability to set custom self-answers is also rumored to make a sound like remote messages. These notification preferences can be allegedly adjusted by users via a new menu that is accessible from an updated Locking and Control Center.

Other rumors on iOS 15 included iMessage updates to compete better with WhatsApp, dark mode tweaks and possibly food logging in the health app. There seems to be no privacy for Apple too. iOS 15 could include a new privacy menu, which allows you to see exactly what data applications you collect. (Facebook, sorry.) (Sorry.)

New accessibility features are also something you can expect to see. Apple announced a host of new features to the iPhone and other Apple devices to celebrate the Global Accessibility Awareness Day. These include increased support for hearing aids, background sounds to assist sound sensitizers as well as increased picture descriptions for blind and low view communities in your VoiceOver Screen Reader. While these updates are certainly on the way, Apple was a bit vague whether some would be updated to iOS 14 or wait for the iOS 15. WWDC21 is still a good place to further emphasize these efforts.

The new 12.9-inch iPad Pro
Photo: Caitlin McGarry/Gizmodo

All right, what can you say about iPadOS 15?

According to the same Bloomberg report, since the very first iPad launched in 2010, Apple plans to “mainly update” the iPad home screen. It seems that this means better widgets—as in, the whole app grid can be replaced until it is only widgets and widgets.

Some update to iOS 15 can also be expected to make way for the iPad. This includes potential iMessage updates, notification controls and all new confidentiality features. We also know that iPadOS is also designed to support third-party eye monitoring devices with an accessibility update by Apple, so you can control the device with your eye movements.

Besides that, the chat about iPadOS isn’t too much. But it can’t be ruled out that Apple recently released new iPad Pros with M1 power. We found this device overkill in Gizmodo’s 12.9-inch iPad Pro (the pure miniLED display). The hardware simply goes beyond what iPadOS can offer today. However, we would not have done so before Apple first released the hardware, and then we would surprise everyone by some new updates that use the new M1 chip and unlock the full potential of iPad Pro.

Cool, but What devices are iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 supportable?

You need a gadget with the A10 chipper, according to The Verifier and iPhoneSoft. In other words, anything older than an iPhone 7 is not supported. This is no wonder that also the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus were launched for the first time in 2015. This also means that the first-generation iPhone SE isn’t supported.

We know absolutely nothing of the iPads (except the latest ones) that iPadOS 15 will probably support. Having said that, if we go through the iPhones, we think that A9X iPads or more may not cut them off. Again, the switch from iPadOS13 to iPadOS14 has never dropped any devices so we have to wait and see.

The M1 MacBook Air
Photo: Caitlin McGarry/Gizmodo

What about macOS? What about macOS?

Big Sur, or macOS 11, has made a doozy and officially ended the macOS X naming conventions for almost two decades. Well, it was a year, and we know the next release of macOS is going to be… macOS 12 thanks to the recent leak from the WebKit. The new code name is likely to be a hallmark in CA, which could be either Mammoth or Monterey if the trademarks of Apple are any indication.

It’s tumbleweeds besides – though Mark Gurman, of Bloomberg, expects an update “minor.”

But, okay, those Rumors of MacBook!!!

Oh, yeah. While WWDC is not usually a hardware event, Apple often pulls out a few gadgets to keep everyone up. The transition to Apple Silicon has been well underway and the company has allegedly moved up to the next level after the M1.

If Apple decides to start some hardware, the two candidates most likely are a new MacBook Pro 14 and 16-inch. Mark Gurman of Bloomberg says that “by summer” both computers could arrive. But the laptops will be available in Q22021, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said. Both of them have very good track records when it comes to Apple gadgets, so these laptops can start anytime.

The new MacBook Pros will have a revised design, on which Kuo and Gurman agree. The Touch Bar is supposed to go the way, a new flat chassis, MagSafe loading and more port possibilities will be created. However, Gurman says that they are not going to be driven by the M1. No, two sci-fi chips called Jade C-Chop and Jade C-Die will power them.

Assistive Touch is coming.
Image: Apple

Focus on Deets on watchOS 8

Surprisingly, not much has been leaked so far on watchOS 8. Based on the past WWDCs, watchOS 7, and rumors of next generation Apple Watches Series 7, you can make several educated guesses.

Generally, every iteration of watchOS includes some new faces of the watch and some additional health, fitness and tweaks. In this case, watchOS 7 introduced a new type of dance training. Later that year Apple started its on-demand workout, Fitness+, and there were dance workouts. When I speak about Fitness+, it’s partly an illustration of what the Apple Watch can do, so if we heard some new updates on that front it would be surprising. As regards other health aspects, we wouldn’t be shocked if there were improvements to native sleep tracking, which is connected to the above food in iOS 15.

Blood glucose monitoring is more extensive. While the Series 7 is rumored—and we know that Apple has done some research on it—it has a lot of regulatory barriers to it.

One thing we know is Assistive Touch, we’re going to see. It’s part of Apple’s accessibility, which allows gesture control. As in the case of a telephone call, you can clamp your fist to respond or start workout. There’s a demo you can see here, and it’s pretty cool we have to admit.

However, we are curious to see if the Apple Watch Series 3 support for watchOS 8 is extended. Although Apple offers the cheapest intelligent clock, we have asked you to buy a new Series 3 several times. Using watchOS 7 updates, users have reported major problems – and they’re unlikely to go away with watchOS 8.

The new Siri remote.
Image: Apple

Do you not forget tvOS?

Here were some spotty rumors. TVOS 15 has been reported to receive a redesign, as are parental controls, child friendly mode and screen time — but it also stated in this publication last year that you will take it with a small grain of salt. However, for two reasons, there is a good chance we will see some major updates here. First, a new 4K streaming and Siri Apple TV has just been released. Secondly, Apple is probably interested in integrating Fitness+ and Apple Arcade better.

Anything Else? Anything Else?

Oh yes, Apple may announce a completely new OS Monday—homeOS. Apple will slightly.

Apple has had a crazy smart home strategy until now and is trying to change that with the HomePod Mini’s recent success. So much so that it posted a “homeOS” job listing. Later Apple took away the mention of homeOS, so it could have been a goof — or some changes on the horizon. In any case, we heard late rumors that Apple is working on a HomePod-Apple TV hybrid gadget, but it certainly isn’t ready for WWDC.

So you’ve got it, people there. It’s a lot, but at the very least we won’t have to wait too long to know which rumors come out of them – and which aren’t. Everything Apple announces on the WWDC next week will be covered. Stay tuned. Just stay tuned.