5 reasons your Apple experience is about to get even more amazing

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Watch WWDC as a developer is a completely different experience.
Devs at WWDC 2016 see plenty of under-the-hood tweaks that will ultimately mean big things for users.
Photo: Apple

Most Apple fans don’t start drooling at the mention of speech-recognition APIs, Xcode thread sanitizers, Metal tessellation or Pixar USD model support. However, if you’re a developer, those can be huge game-changers that mean you can make your apps better than ever.

While Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference 2016 keynote revealed loads of fresh features coming in iOS 10 and macOS Sierra — including some amazing stuff that should delight iPhone, iPad and Mac owners when the final versions launch this fall — developers watching Monday’s event saw tons of seemingly minor updates that will let them make apps better than ever.

To find out what the little updates could mean for typical users, Cult of Mac asked some of this year’s Apple Design Award winners what WWDC additions they’re most excited about.

Here’s what they told us.

macOS Sierra hands on: Apple’s best desktop OS yet

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macOS Siri
Watch macOS Sierra's latest features in action.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

The first macOS beta was released this week, so of course I downloaded it straight away on my Mac to bring you all a quick hands on video.

Although this is still the first beta, and many functions still don’t work as intended, it gives us our first glimpse at Apple’s next-gen desktop OS in action. Check out the macOS Sierra hands on video below.

At WWDC 2016, Apple strengthens bonds between increasingly powerful platforms

Apple lays out the future of its evolving ecosystem at WWDC 2016.
Apple lays out the future of its evolving ecosystem at WWDC 2016.
Photo: Apple

With absolutely no new hardware to show off, Apple focused on software — the glue that binds together its increasingly powerful and interconnected platforms — during the Worldwide Developers Conference kick-off event Monday.

“Our North Star has always been about improving people’s lives by creating great products that change the world,” said Apple CEO Tim Cook, addressing thousands of developers in San Francisco’s Bill Graham Civic Auditorium. “Today for the very first time, we are going to talk to you about four Apple platforms. Each of these platforms is category-defining and world-changing.”

Apple gives first look at iOS 10 in new video

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iOS 10 launches this fall.
iOS 10 launches this fall.
Photo: Apple

Apple’s big iOS 10 update for iPhones and iPads won’t be available to the public until later this fall, but the company has already started hyping its launch with a new teaser video.

iOS 10 packs 10 big additions that change everything from the lock screen’s UI, Siri, and how you’ll interact with friends in Messages. We’re still diving into all the new features in the first developer beta. In the meantime, you can get your first glimpse of iOS 10 below:

Siri comes to Mac and opens up to developers

Siri is coming to the Mac, and will be opened to third-party developers on iOS.
Siri is coming to the Mac, and will be opened to third-party developers on iOS.
Photo: Apple

Big changes are coming to Siri, Apple’s intelligent voice-activated assistant. For the first time, Siri will be available on the Mac and will be opened to third-party developers on iOS.

While Siri was one of the first voice-controlled AI assistants on the market, it’s fallen behind competitors like Amazon’s Alexa and Google Now, largely because it was a closed system that worked only in Apple’s apps. Opening it to developers makes it much more functional, and presents a more serious challenge to upstarts like Viv that promise to help with a wide range of services and tasks.