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Apple confirms WWDC 2020 will go ahead in June with ‘all-new online format’

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Apple WWDC 2020
WWDC 2020 will go ahead, but as an online-only event.
Photo: Apple

Apple on Friday confirmed that its annual Worldwide Developers Conference will go ahead in June with “an all-new online format” and not take place at a conference center as has happened since the first WWDC in 1987.

The high-tech giant said the approach was essential amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, but that it was determined to deliver a full program with an online keynote and developer sessions. Apple has also confirmed it will commit $1 million to local San Jose organizations to offset revenue loss as a result of WWDC going online-only.

WWDC on or off? Santa Clara County bans mass gatherings, piling on pressure

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Apple faces tough decisions about a potential March product event and WWDC 2020 as COVID-19 virus spreads.
COVID-19 could force Apple to cancel WWDC.
Photo: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

The chances of Apple having to cancel — or drastically change the format of — its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) have ramped up significantly, with Santa Clara County banning all mass gatherings.

Both Apple’s Cupertino campus and the WWDC venue in San Jose fall within those county limits. The ban, announced Monday night, is currently planned to last for only three weeks. However if the spread of the COVID-19 novel coronavirus continues it’s highly possible that gets extended.

WWDC at risk as California authorities call for cancellation of events

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WWDC might go virtual this year.
WWDC 2020 is in jeopardy as Apple’s local health department asks large gatherings be cancelled.
Photo: Apple

The pressure on Apple to cancel its yearly developers conference and possibly a planned March product keynote has gotten a little tougher.

The Public Health Department of Santa Clara County, where Apple’s headquarters is located,  recommended Thursday the postponing or canceling of mass gatherings to prevent the further spread of the coronavirus. That calls into question whether Apple will hold its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June, as it traditionally does.

COVID-19 virus means tough decisions about WWDC and rumored Apple keynote

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Apple faces tough decisions about a potential March product event and WWDC 2020 as COVID-19 virus spreads.
Apple faces tough decisions about a potential March product event and WWDC 2020.
Photo: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

With COVID-19 spreading in the San Francisco Bay Area, and at least one upcoming event at a critical planning stage for the high-tech giant, Apple must make some tough decisions about how to proceed, according to conference experts contacted by Cult of Mac.

Apple faces mounting pressure to decide whether to cancel, delay or change the format of its annual Worldwide Developers Conference, typically held in June. The same holds true, although to a lesser extent, for Apple’s rumored March product keynote.

“There’s a lot to consider for Apple and it won’t be easy,” said Ian McGonnigal, marketing executive with Experiential Executive, who has consulted on conference and convention planning with more than a dozen Fortune 500 companies. “Reputation is a huge challenge here and that’s part of it. Companies don’t want to appear tone-deaf to what’s going on out there.”

Facebook cancels F8 conference due to coronavirus, putting WWDC 2020 in question

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Facebook owns 4 of the top 10 apps of the past decade
Coronavirus killed Facebook's big event.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

The coronavirus killed another major tech event today as Facebook revealed the in-person component of its annual F8 developers’ conference is canceled due to concerns around the coronavirus COVID-19.

Facebook’s move comes close to the time when Apple normally announces the dates for its Worldwide Developers Conference. The iPhone-maker revealed WWDC 2019 dates on March 14 last year, but with more and more tech events getting shut down, it could change Apple’s plans for its biggest conference of the year.

WWDC app is now called the ‘Apple Developer’ app

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WWDC app is now called the 'Apple Developer' app
It's the app developers have dreamed of.
Photo: Apple

To showcase the increasing utility of its WWDC app, Apple changed the app’s name to something that sounds relevant all year long. The app formerly known as the WWDC app is now know as the Apple Developer app.

While Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference takes place for just one week in June, the WWDC app increasingly included “in-depth information” from Apple experts throughout the year. And the new name is just the beginning — Apple plans to make the app even more useful for developers.

You can now search transcripts of every 2019 WWDC dev session

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WWDC transcripts
It's a crash course in all things developer.
Photo: Apple

WWDC may be best known to casual Apple fans for its keynote speech, but it’s a whole educational week for devs.

While the best way to experience the Developer’s Conference is to attend live, not everyone is able to. With that in mind, Apple has just made videos of all its 2019 instructional sessions available. And they’re fully searchable.

Nailed it! Why WWDC 2019 was one for the ages [Cult of Mac Magazine No. 300]

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Cult of Mac Magazine No. 300 cover
That was one awesome WWDC!
Cover: Marty Cortinas/Cult of Mac

The warp-speed WWDC 2019 keynote truly delivered the goods. Tim Cook and his lieutenants took the wraps off tons of exciting new features coming in iOS 13, iPadOS, macOS Catalina, watchOS 6 and tvOS 13.

And then, in a hardware shocker, Apple even showed off an insanely powerful new Mac Pro.

Relive Apple’s epic presentation — and get our take on what it all means — in this week’s free issue of Cult of Mac Magazine for iOS. Or read on to get the rest of the week’s best Apple news, reviews and how-tos in your browser.

Catch our reactions to Apple’s legendary WWDC keynote, this week on The CultCast

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cultcast 391
WWDCs don't get more exciting than this.

This week on The CultCast: Our WWDC 2019 reactions! Apple keynotes don’t get more legendary than this one. Plus: Crazy cryptographic tech powers Apple’s new Find My app, and our favorite features of iOS 13, macOS Catalina, tvOS and watchOS.

Our thanks to Squarespace for supporting this episode. Easily create a beautiful website all by yourself, at Squarespace.com/cultcast. Use offer code CultCast at checkout to get 10% off your first purchase of a website or domain..

Why SwiftUI might be the biggest thing to come out of WWDC

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Why SwiftUI is actually a big deal.
SwiftUI is actually a pretty big deal.
Photo: Apple

WWDC 2019 bug Apple lavished attention on all its platforms at WWDC this year. We even got a first look at the all-new Mac Pro. But another announcement, which didn’t grab so many headlines, may prove to be the most important thing to come out of this year’s developer conference: SwiftUI.

SwiftUI promises to fundamentally change the way developers create apps for Apple products. And you don’t need to be a techie to appreciate why it’s such a big deal.

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