Thoughts on the Apple WWDC 2023 keynote

Were these always 2 hours long? This one felt longer than the usual Apple keynote but maybe that’s just me misremembering. Or maybe I’m getting too old for these tech keynotes.

Anyways, let’s get into it.

Mac and macOS Sonoma

  • I still think the 15″ MacBook Air is a Bad Idea. The whole idea is a “small” and “light” computer. But it is a Bad Idea that will sell a gazillion units, folks love their big screens.
  • Mac Studio gets M2 along with the new M2 Ultra. Cool. If I were to go all in on a Mac desktop setup, it would be with a Mac Studio.
  • We finally get the Mac Pro on the Apple Silicon train. And we get PCIe expansion slots! If I ever won the multi-million dollar lottery I am buying a fully maxed out Mac Pro. Sports car? Nah, give me extremely expensive desktop computer, thanks.
  • macOS Sonoma. Cool name. Game Mode lmao. But hey you can play Death Stranding on a Mac this year. And we are just bringing back desktop widgets…cool. What is old is new again.


Adaptive audio coming to AirPods Pro, AirPods and AirPods Max.

At WWDC 2023 today, Apple announced that it will be adding adaptive audio, combining active noise cancellation and transparency modes based on the noises in the wearer’s environment, to the second-generation AirPods Pro. This and a couple of other machine learning-based features are coming this fall via a software update.

Apple is adding adaptive audio to AirPods Pro

If this works as advertise, awesome. The AirPods Pro are what I use whenever I am out and about and this will just make them better.

watchOS 10

  • A fairly iterative update which is not necessarily a bad thing.
  • Yay, widgets..
  • New fitness features that I won’t care about unless I actually get back into a fitness regiment that’s not just going outside for short walks every once in a while.

iOS 17

  • Better auto-correct using ML models. If this works as intended…finally no more ducking corrections.
  • Contact posters are a cool feature, can’t wait to put my fursona on it. You are gonna love getting calls from me. Cute kitty!
  • NameDrop as a way of sharing contact info is also awesome. Leveraging existing tech to make a error prone process simple, I love it.
  • Standby may get me to buy a new stand for my iPhone to use by my bedside.
  • Offline Maps, yay!
  • Live voicemail seems like a feature dependent on carrier support but we’ll see I guess.
  • Journal, new Apple app. Seems it might sherlock a bit of Day One’s audience.
  • Check In, genuinely a good idea for a safety feature. I’m glad Apple is building this.
  • iMessage gets…live stickers and swipe to reply. Cool, I don’t use iMessage enough to care.
  • Facetime messages – I use Facetime even less so *shrug*

Vision Pro & visionOS

  • Starting at USD$3,499. Oof. The first generation and early adopter tax is very much real here. I don’t think I’ll be buying one though I definitely want one.
  • I like that this is a AR headset and not a VR one.
  • I really like the design of the headset. Its visually appealing.
  • I appreciate that Apple is attempting to make this not be a antisocial device. The ways they are doing it also seem well thought out.
  • I don’t want to play video games on this thing but I do want to watch a movie on it.
  • I am skeptical how well the physical control gestures are going to work. That seems like a critical feature that could make or break the future of this line of Apple product.
  • I am curious what developers and content creators are going to do with this device. Especially what well-made porn made for AR looks like. Yes, I am being serious.

Concluding Thoughts

An iterative year for all the Apple stuff I actually use and care about. That is fine. I don’t mind, I’d rather slow iteration and improvement over large changes.

Vision Pro and visionOS is genuinely the first time in a long time I’ve actually been excited for a new Apple product. Like “oh wow, I wonder how all of this is gonna work” instead of “oh cool, here’s a new iPhone” kinda excitement. Exciting times.