Today marked the beginning of Apple's annual World Wide Developers Conference, and the usual announcement of accompanying product updates. Now that BlackBerry’s out of the picture, this time Apple has its eyes set on its last standing mobile competitor – Google and their Android operating system. Enter its newest platform – iOS 6 that features a gang of new specs designed to surpass Android. Apple also introduced a thinner yet stronger MacBook Pro, a much improved Siri and a host of other changes, all of which total up to a big middle finger to the company’s closest competitors, Google and Microsoft.
Siri (Finally) Gets An Update
When she was first introduced to the world last year, Siri looked like little more than a gimmick for iPhone users to show to their friends that didn't own iPhones, but Apple's been tinkering with the robot butler improving just about everything about her. Siri's now a sports buff and a movie fanatic, and she's completely integrated with your car (if it's compatible, of course). She knows how many points Lebron scored in Game 7 and she can tell you what movies starring Sacha Baron Cohen are in theaters. All you have to do is ask. In short, iPhone users can now bypass Google's search bar to get any information they may need.
Google Maps Is Gone
For the lastest iOS release, Apple's also included their own Maps app in lieu of the one provided by Google that's been on every past model. It's fully capable of turn-by-turn navigation, 3D rendering, even birds-eye views (called Flyover). Oh, and Siri can also read you directions while you drive, so you don't have to look at the screen. Another uppercut delivered to Google's chin.
Forget Google Wallet, Try Passbook
Google recently introduced a mobile payment system that started rolling out last year, so naturally Apple had to respond, and in true Steve Jobs fashion, Apple's version is better. Much better. With Passbook, not only can you pay with credit cards, but you can get electronic versions of things like movie tickets, gift cards, and boarding passes. Did the gate change? No problem, you're already checked in and you'll get a push notification telling you your new gate. And you didn't even have to look at the monitors in the airport.
Facebook and Twitter Integration On your Computer
On the computer side of things, the Silicon Valley tech giant most notably juiced up its line of Macbook Pros, just a couple months in advance of the Microsoft's Windows 8 release.
No matter what you're doing, you can share your thoughts. Whether there's a cool YouTube video, or you just set a high score in Temple Run, or you really like a post on TSS, you can tell the world without leaving the application or the web page. Twitter and Facebook access is built right into the operating systems (both iOS 6 for mobile and Mountain Lion for computers). iPhone users can already do this with Twitter, but now Facebook is included in the package.
The MacBook Pro Now Runs On Steroids
Today Retina display technology came to the MacBooks. With a whopping resolution of 2880x1800 or 220 pixels per inch, USB 3.0 technology, up to 16 GB of RAM, and 768 GB of solid-state storage there likely isn't a computer that can match it's speed. Of course if you max out all the options, you'll be forking over your life savings (more than $3,000), so this one is probably for the highest end users only and for the rest of us to oggle at.