After watching Apple’s latest keynote, which was less than a stellar experience, we we’re still all excited to get our hands on the new iPhone 6 and iOS 8. But, yesterday was a bad day for a lot of people.
My daughter in law received her brand new iPhone 6 that will replace her aging iPhone 4S running the newly released iOS 8. She did a backup using the latest release of iTunes on her MacBook Air. She then wanted to restore to her new iPhone 6. After hours of trial and errors, she decided to setup her new iPhone as a new device and forget about restoring her data. She was pissed off. I fell sorry for her. After all, we all expect Apple to provide devices and services that just works. Well, I’m sorry to tell you: not anymore it seems.
This was the day iOS 8.0.1 update came out and disabled cellular and Touch ID on all iPhone 6 where the update got installed. This was disastrous enough for the news to be all over the place this morning. Oh, and while speaking of Apple on prime time, why not mention about the bendable iPhones too. Gosh.
I myself installed iOS 8 on all my devices and while this is a massive update, it comes with a lot of quirks too. I was anxious to use iCloud iPhoto Library to find out it is still in beta, just like iWork’s Page, Keynote and Numbers on icloud.com since they came out last year. HealthKit was pulled on last minute and apps will have to wait for iOS 8.0.2.
What is going on? We could try to explain the situation and put forward some theories but the fact is that it isn’t just working anymore. We’ll have to wait for the next few months for the dust to settle and see Apple fix the problems. Because, there are many of them.
Quite few people were surprised to learn that Apple will no longer develop Aperture. Many more were surprised to see Apple do the same with iPhoto, an application that was the center piece of Apple’s digital hub strategy back in 2001. As you know, both of these applications will be replaced by “Photos” on Yosemite. But like a few others, I think those apps were outdated and built on a decade old code base at a time where iCloud and iOS weren’t even in Apple’s labs.
Photo management on iOS and OS X was not optimal and were lacking integration in regard to storage. Under the new Apple where iOS team and OS X team better work together, I can see that Apple management wanted to better integrate both platforms so they decided to start fresh and build a better application that will help users with their workflow starting from one device and going to the others. They did the same with Keynote and Pages back in 2013. These apps were made 100% compatible together and available with the same feature set over iCloud.com. Here is how Apple could play the scenario early next year.
After releasing iOS 8.0 and OS X 10.10 in the fall of 2014, users will start to get used to Photos on iOS and learn how they fit in their workflows. iCloud will play a major role here as this will help users store many more photos than their device can actually store themselves. With OS X 10.10, iPhoto and Aperture will see minor compatibility updates while Apple is still working on Photos for OS X. Then, beginning of 2015, Apple will release an update to Yosemite that will include their new photo management app coupled with a last update to iPhoto and Aperture. Upon starting the newly released Photos for the first time, users will be prompted to decide what to do with their current iPhoto library: leave it as is or migrate it to the new Photos format. By doing so, all pictures and most of the metadata will be migrated and optionally made available over iCloud. On iOS devices running with iOS 8, pictures from iPhoto being uploaded to iCloud will start to appear in their Photos library. The same kind of workflow will be available to Aperture users. As with previous versions of iOS, Apple will probably release iOS 8.1 at the same time early 2015. This release could include new photo management and editing features as well.
In the following months of 2015, Apple could release other iOS 8 updates with new Photos features coupled with similar updates for OS X Yosemite’s Photos. From now on, each of these platform will be kept in sync in regard to photo management and editing. At some point, people will be able to delete iPhoto or Aperture as they no longer being updated by Apple.
This is the kind of scenario Apple could play next year in regard to iPhoto and Aperture replacement. People will have choice. Some will stay with Aperture, many will go to Adobe’s Lightroom and iPhoto users will be happy to use a modern and refreshed photo management solution built for the next ten years or more.
Intriguing idea from The Mac Observer today. How about running iOS applications on Mac OS computer? While this proposal seems interesting (suddenly Mac users get access to thousands of new apps on their desktop), this pauses a few critical issues.
There is no Mac right now with touch screen. I’m far from certain that using iOS applications with the mouse offers the best user experience. Second, even if the solution was to use the track pad, this would create user interaction consistency issues. Running an application inside the iPhone simulator for development and testing purposes is one thing, but for a much longer and period is quite another.
We don’t waste time thinking, ‘But it should be one [interface!]’ ‘How do you make these [operating systems] merge together?’ What a waste of energy that would be,” Schiller said. But he added that the company definitely tries to smooth out bumps in the road that make it difficult for its customers to switch between a Mac and an iOS device. For example, making sure its messaging and calendaring apps have the same name on both OS X and iOS.
To say [OS X and iOS] should be the same, independent of their purpose? Let’s just converge, for the sake of convergence? [It’s] absolutely a non-goal,” Federighi said. “You don’t want to say the Mac became less good at being a Mac because someone tried to turn it into iOS. At the same time, you don’t want to feel like iOS was designed by [one] company and Mac was designed by [a different] company, and they’re different for reasons of lack of common vision. We have a common sense of aesthetics, a common set of principles that drive us, and we’re building the best products we can for their unique purposes. So you’ll see them be the same where that makes sense, and you’ll see them be different in those things that are critical to their essence.”
Apple executives - January 22th, 2014.
Happy to see that Apple isn’t considering merging iOS and OS X. Look at Microsoft and Windows 8 (for PC and Tablets) for a spectacular failure in this regard.