Apple’s Software Revolution: A Peek at iOS 18 & macOS Sequoia Apps

Tips • June 12, 2024

Apple Intelligence apps

Apple’s 2024 software updates under ‘Apple Intelligence’ are set to redefine user experience across iOS 18 and macOS Sequoia. This sneak peek highlights how Apple’s latest innovations offer a transformative upgrade to essential apps and new ones.

Apple Intelligence, the power behind the revolution

Apple’s 2024 software updates usher in a new era of intelligent user experience with the introduction of Apple Intelligence. This innovative suite of AI features seamlessly integrates with iOS 18, iPadOS 18, and macOS Sequoia, working behind the scenes to personalize and enhance your interactions with your devices.

Apple Intelligence leverages the power of machine learning to understand your needs and preferences. This allows the software to anticipate your actions, automate tasks, and provide intelligent suggestions, ultimately making your digital life more efficient and intuitive.

App highlights of iOS 18 and macOS Sequoia

Get ready to streamline your digital experience! iOS 18 and macOS Sequoia boast a range of upgrades designed to make your favorite apps more intuitive and efficient.

Passwords app: a new era of digital security

Apple introduces a robust Passwords app designed to streamline and secure user authentication:

apple passwords app

  • Passkeys Implementation: This innovative feature replaces traditional passwords with passkeys, leveraging Face ID or Touch ID for login, thus thwarting phishing and other cyber attacks. You could benefit from automatic account upgrades to passkeys, providing a frictionless transition.
  • Platform Compatibility: Available on iOS 18, iPadOS 18, macOS Sequoia, and accessible on Windows via iCloud for Windows, this app ensures seamless password management across devices.

Photos app: smarter organization and seamless editing

The revamped Photos app enhances user experience with improved organization and editing tools:

  • Intelligent Categorization: Photos are auto-sorted by themes such as trips and events, and can be filtered by specific time frames (month or year), facilitating quicker access to desired images.
  • Advanced Editing Features: On macOS Sequoia, the Clean Up function removes unwanted background elements from images, while Memories Slideshow allows you to create engaging slideshows by describing an event, with Apple Intelligence curating relevant photos and music.

apple photos

iPad Calculator: interactive math tool

For the first time, the iPad introduces a Calculator app with innovative functionalities.

  • Math Notes with Apple Pencil: You can handwrite equations, and the app provides immediate solutions upon recognizing an equals sign. This feature caters to complex calculations, offering a powerful tool for students and professionals.

Additional noteworthy upgrades

Messages App: Adds the ability to schedule messages, advanced Tapbacks, and new text effects for enhanced communication.

Freeform App: Introduces Freeform Scenes for improved board organization and supports iCloud for real-time collaboration.

Notes App: Includes live audio transcripts, collapsible sections, and integrated math problem-solving tools.

Mail App: Organizes emails into new categories like receipts and newsletters for streamlined inbox management.

Safari: Features contextual highlights and an upgraded Reader mode for better browsing and content navigation.

Maps: Offers detailed topographical information and hiking routes from over 50 US national parks (similar functionality expected for other regions in future updates).

Journal App: Tracks mood and goals, with a search function for past entries.

Calendar: Integrates tasks from Reminders, providing a comprehensive view of events and tasks.

Continuity: Allows iPhone mirroring on Mac, enabling smooth interaction and file transfer between devices.

Will Apple’s new features replace your favorite apps?

As we mentioned above, Apple’s 2024 software updates under ‘Apple Intelligence’ promise a significant upgrade to user experience. But will these new features completely replace your favorite third-party apps? Let’s take a closer look at the Passwords app and the iPad Calculator as examples.

Passwords vs. 1Password:

  • Security Focus: Both offer secure password management, but 1Password boasts additional features like secure password sharing, data breach monitoring, and a travel mode.
  • Convenience: Apple’s Passkeys leveraging Face ID/Touch ID offer a frictionless login experience. 1Password, however, might be more convenient for users who need to access passwords across multiple devices and platforms (beyond Apple’s ecosystem).
  • User Choice: While Apple’s Passwords app offers a robust solution, users who value a wider range of security features and cross-platform compatibility might prefer to stick with 1Password.

Third-Party iPad Calculators vs. Apple’s New Calculator:

  • Advanced Math Functions: While the new iPad Calculator offers basic and scientific functions, some third-party apps might cater to users with more specialized needs, such as graphing calculators or advanced engineering tools.
  • Customization: Third-party apps often allow for extensive customization of layouts, functions, and themes, which might appeal to users who prefer a personalized experience.
  • Learning Curve: Apple’s native app offers a familiar interface that integrates seamlessly with the iPad ecosystem. Third-party apps might have a steeper learning curve, especially for those unfamiliar with their specific functionalities.

Hidden gems beyond Apple’s solutions

At TheSweetBits, we offer insights into features Apple hasn’t yet addressed in its updates. Here’s a look at some valuable third-party recommendations:

Battery Management (Mac):

  • AlDente Pro: This app allows setting charging limits to extend battery lifespan. However, some users might prefer a native solution integrated directly into macOS settings.
  • Endurance: This app optimizes battery usage through background process management and screen dimming. However, users with specific workflows might need more granular control over these automations.

Advanced Window Management:

  • Magnet: This app offers various ways to manage windows on Mac, including snapping, tiling, and hovering windows. For users who frequently work with multiple windows, Wins can be a productivity booster.
  • Swish: This app utilizes multi-touch gestures on the Mac touchpad for window management. While offering a unique approach, it might require some practice for users unfamiliar with these gestures.

Enhanced Menu Bar Functionality:

  • Bartender 5: This popular menu bar icon management tool elegantly solves the issue of cluttered or hidden icons.
  • Folder Hub: This handy tool resides in the Mac’s notch area, providing quick access to files and directories.
  • MenubarX Pro: This app transforms the menu bar into a versatile browser, allowing you to access websites and tools with ease.
  • DockX Pro: This app displays real-time information like network speed, memory usage, and animated GIFs directly on the Dock and menu bar.

Apple’s focus on simplicity and ease of use in its software updates might pose a challenge to third-party apps with complex interfaces. However, these apps can still thrive by offering niche functionalities, advanced customization options, and cross-platform compatibility.

A look ahead

Apple’s software updates in iOS 18 and macOS Sequoia, expected for release in Fall 2024, represent a significant leap forward, embodying a software revolution through ‘Apple Intelligence’. By enhancing security, organization, and functionality, these innovations provide you with a more intuitive, efficient, and secure digital environment, setting new benchmarks for app performance and user experience.

As Apple continues to refine its native solutions, the future of third-party apps hinges on their ability to innovate and cater to specific user needs. The competitive landscape will likely see a shift towards specialized features and platform-agnostic experiences.

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