Apple may continue to neglect near-field communication (NFC), but that's only giving third-party developers incentive to find other ways for iPhone users to pay for goods, such as just saying your name.
As if Apple's "mission statement" video that kicked off WWDC 2013 wasn't already a good indication, Cupertino is stepping up its efforts to show how its products affect users, rather than focusing on specific features as rivals such as Samsung continue to do. You can see what we mean in today's recap, which also details a few products disappearing off the radar. Find out why!
Last year's Asphalt 7: Heat marked a pretty significant leap in quality for Gameloft's long-running series, with the arcade-style racer delivering ample driving thrills for only a buck. Still, it was the kind of fun that was tempered slightly by some awkward vehicle physics and animations, not to mention tracks that felt decidedly generic.
While most of us have turned our attention away from WWDC 2013 in the wake of Monday's keynote, developers will still be busy at Moscone West this mid-week hump day at Apple's annual conference. The rest of us will have to keep busy working our own jobs until we can see the fruits of their labor in the months ahead, which gives us time to catch up on other news making the rounds...
Like last year, Apple started this year's WWDC keynote with a clever video. But this time it wasn't a cheap shot at Android or a silly swipe at Samsung. It was a peek into Apple's design philosophy, a beautifully crafted response to anyone who has been questioning its commitment to innovation:
"If everyone is busy making everything, how can anyone perfect anything? We start to confuse convenience with joy, abundance with choice. Designing something requires focus. The first thing we ask is, what do we want people to feel? Delight. Surprise. Love. Connection. Then we begin to craft around our intention. It takes time ... there are a thousand no's for every yes. We simplify. We perfect. We start over. Until every thing we touch enhances each life it touches. Only then do we sign our work: Designed by Apple in California."
It was barely a minute, but it stuck with me throughout the two hours of pomp and circumstance that followed. Apple hasn't been dragging its heels or taking its eye off the ball. On the contrary, it's more focused than it's ever been.
A pirate-themed match-three puzzle game on iPhone and iPad? Sure, it's been done before, but rather than sticking to the status quo, Scurvy Scallywags throws all kinds of crazy ideas onto the pile. Combating, collecting, crafting, and combo-chaining your way across the salty seas is a collective task overflowing with quirky pillaging and plundering aplenty, and we'd expect nothing less from Monkey Island series creator Ron Gilbert and his co-conspirators at Beep Games.
We came, we saw and for the most part, OS X Mavericks and iOS 7 appear to be a big hit with Apple fans. Pro users who have been waiting literally years for a new Mac Pro were also generally pleased with Cupertino's sneak peek of the new hardware, and we crossed off most of the items on our own personal wish list. Now we have to endure a long, hot summer before we can get our hands on all these goodies, but first let's recap some of the other stories from Monday you might have missed.