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What to expect from iOS 16, macOS 13, iPadOS 16 and watchOS 9

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What to expect from iOS 16, macOS 13, iPadOS 16 and watchOS 9 at WWDC22
WWDC22 will give us our first official looks at iOS 16, macOS 13, iPadOS 16 and watchOS 9. But you don't have to wait.
Photo: Apple/Cult of Mac

We’re less than a month away from WWDC22, an excellent time to look ahead to the unveiling of iOS 16, macOS 13, iPadOS 16 and watchOS 9. As always, these operating system upgrades are expected to be the highlights of Apple’s annual developers conference.

Some details about them already leaked out, though. Here’s a foretaste of WWDC22.

The radical evolution of watchOS and what it tells us about Apple’s future

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I've seen the future and it's Apple Watch: The radical evolution of watchOS and what it tells us about Apple’s future.
I've seen the future and it's Apple Watch.
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

Unveiled at a special event way back in 2014, the first Apple Watch looked similar to the wearable we know and love today. But looks can be deceiving. Take the Digital Crown and Side Button, for example. Their design may not have changed, but their functionality is now very different.

Apple Watch went through a radical evolution over the past eight years. What started out as an “intimate way to connect and communicate,” has become primarily a health and fitness device.

This pivot is uncharacteristic of Apple. Products like iPod, iPhone and iPad launched with a clear vision and remained true to it. The Apple Watch’s evolution suggests a shift in Cupertino’s approach to new products, and provides tantalizing clues to the future of the company’s rumored next platform launch: realityOS.

iOS 16 could finally fix a major iPhone pain point

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These iPhones and iPads won't get iOS 16
Could Apple finally improve notification management in iOS 16?
Photo: the Hacker 34

Apple could fix a major iPhone pain point by introducing some “fairly significant enhancements” to notifications in iOS 16, according to a reliable source. Further, the company could make major improvements to health and activity tracking in watchOS 9.

The Cupertino company also supposedly will debut a new multitasking interface in iPadOS 16.

Apple VR/AR headset takes big step toward production

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Apple VR/AR headset takes big step toward production
The Apple VR/AR headset might look something like this concept when it finally gets released.
Concept: Martin Hajek/Computer Bild

Apple is reportedly doing engineering validation tests on its much-rumored VR/AR headset. This is an important milestone in moving the product out of the lab and into production.

The device — which supposedly will offer both virtual reality and augmented reality capabilities — is expected to be unveiled later this year.

Apple’s AR/VR headset is about to get real [The CultCast]

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The CultCast: Another realityOS leak takes us one step closer to strapping Apple gear onto our faces.
Another realityOS leak takes us one step closer to strapping Apple gear onto our ugly mugs.
Image: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

This week on Cult of Mac’s podcast: Apple code once again refers to a mysterious “realityOS” for a virtual/augmented-reality headset. Vague rumors about the new device, which we’ve been hearing for years now, look set to become very real, very soon.

Also on The CultCast:

  • Why no Face ID on Macs?
  • Apple’s workaround for accepting third-party payments is a joke, but developers definitely aren’t laughing.
  • iPhones are about to become cash registers!

Listen to this week’s episode of The CultCast in the Podcasts app or your favorite podcast app. (Be sure to subscribe and leave us a review if you like it!) Or watch the video livestream, embedded below.

Apple spills ‘realityOS’ again as new AR/VR headset inches closer

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Apple realityOS leak
Apple continues to lay the groundwork for its first mixed reality device.
Image: Steve Troughton-Smith

Another reference to Apple’s unreleased “realityOS” operating system leaked Wednesday in new open source code. It suggests the company’s highly anticipated mixed-reality headset is inching closer to its public debut.

The headset could appear this year — perhaps at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference — as many reports previously suggested. However, thanks to technical difficulties Apple recently encountered, we might have to wait until 2023.