It's the end of May, which means WWDC is right around the corner. This year the event is titled Swiftly approaching. Apple typically has some cleverl twist on the title, so hopefully this means we see a major improvement in SwiftUI. ;)
I've been making these posts since 2015 and only a few of my wish list items have come to fruition – so don't get your hopes up too high! Regardless, I firmly believe each of these enhanements would greatly improve the user experience.
Here we go!
First, let's recyle a few of my past wish list items that still have not shipped:
- Better Siri – smarter answers, read to me instead of listed on screen; the ability to unlock using my voice, the re-lock just as easily (recycled)
- Better File Management – make it easier to get files on and off my device, then select the right app to use (recycled)
- Schedule Email Messages – write it now, send it whenever I want (recycled)
- Schedule Text Messages – if the Email app can do it, why not iMessage? (recycled)
New additions this year:
- More Messages Reactions – why can I only choose from 6 preset message reactions? I would like to be able to react with any emoji.
- Edit Messages – maybe it's just because I'm old, but if I notice a typo in a message I just sent, I want to correct it. I get the potential pitfalls in revising past history, but either let me edit withing 30 seconds of sending, or let me edit forever and include a link to the original. This is a solvable problem.
- Rich Text Messages – we're more than a decade into the iMessage revolution. Please let me send bold and italicized words.
- Play Nicely With Android – I can name a group chat if it's all iPhone users. If just one Android user is in the group, I can't, Why? Feels more petty than a technical limitation.
- Make Notifications Universal – if I dismiss a notification on my iPhone, make it go away on my iPad and Mac too. I believe this is how it's supposed to work, but it certainly doesn't.
- Make Reminders Universal – same as notifications. I am constantly in this endless loop: I set a reminder on my work MacBook. Then a few hours later the reminder pops up. I snooze it for a few more hours. Then I jump on to my home MacBook. There's the reminder. What do I do? If I snooze it, now I have two different notification times. If I dismiss it, I'll get none. Please make all of my devices sync properly.
Again, let's restart with previous wish list items:
- Better Copy & Paste – at this point, it's inexcusable. macOS needs a clipboard manager, not one slot of a copied item like we're still living in the 1980s. Let me copy hundreds of items, and scroll back through them (recycled)
- Better Window Sizing & Memory – make it easier to set windows to specific sizes, and stay in specific locations on specific monitors (recycled)
- More Focus Granularity – I wasn't really interested in the Focus improvements made a few years ago, but recently I've found that they're helpful to block out notifications from Messages and Slack while I'm in a Zoom call. Unfortunately, I seems I can only turn it on in hour increments, which isn't quite what I need. How about you let me decide when I want the Focus mode to shut off Apple?
- Make Time Machine Work – this is another one of those features that should be amazing but sucks in reality. I often get error messages saying the backup is corrupted and I need to restart. Not a great look for a feature intended to protect my data. There are rumors that a Time Machine update is coming this year that will allow you to store the data in iCloud. I hope that's true and that they've rewritten the engine to be more reliable. This should be a killer feature on macOS, but right now it's not.
- Better Sharing – the entire way macOS handles sharing seems neglected. Sharing on iOS is super helpful. On the Mac it's a collection of random sharing options that never feel useful. Share a web page to Xcode? Really?
Always On fixed the biggest past gripe I've had with the Apple Watch in the past. Now it's more about incremental improvements:
- Make Walkie-Talkie work – when it was announced, it felt like a gimmick. After having the watch for a few years, I see dozens of times when it would be really helpful for a quick chat with a family member who is out of earshot. But it never works. If it did, I'd use it a lot.
I really enjoy my Apple TV, but it definitely needs a bit of love:
- Netflix in the TV App – I know this one is a business issue, and not entirely in Apple's control, but I'd love to see the TV app reach it's full potential and show all of the content at my displosal. Without Netflix movies and shows included, it's crippled. (recycled)
- Better TV App Interface – speaking of the TV app, it needs … something. The user experience just isn't great. Endlessly scrolling right to see a mix of new episode of shows I like and the things I've half watched isn't useful. The organization of the other content just seems haphazard too. Apple has great designers. Put some UI love towards this app so I want to use it every time I turn on the TV.
- Consistent Volume – can we just have the same volume across all apps and programs? HBO, YouTube, Hulu, shows and ads - just make them all the same.
- Game Console – another drum I've been banging for years. Please Apple, drop the price of the existing Apple TV to about $79, and for $199 make a console version. Put an M1 Max inside, include a top-notch first-party game controller, and work with game developers to ship AAA games. Apple is already a leader in the gaming industry. Time to give it your full support. Oh, and if I'm daydreaming, please work with Valve to make Portal 3 for the Apple TV Max!
Okay, it may not be a product yet, but there has been so much smoke that there must be fire. Reportedly, the product was shown to the Apple Board of Directors this month. If true, that means it is set to be released in the very near future. Fingers crossed that means we'll see a developer preview at WWDC.