SAN FRANCISCO – Apple’s Mac operating system will have easier ways to share and search, while the iOS software for iPhones and iPads is getting new features for keeping tabs on your health and controlling home devices.
Apple executive Craig Federighi said data from various fitness-related devices now live in silos, so you can’t get a comprehensive picture of your health. He said that will change with HealthKit in iOS 8. Apple is also working with the Mayo Clinic to make sure your weight, calorie intake and other health metrics are within healthy ranges.
Apple is also making it easier for various devices to work together, even though the Mac and mobile systems are separate. You can share songs, movies and books you purchase with your entire family, and you can sync photos more easily across several devices.
Macs and mobile gadgets will share more features, and you can exchange files between the two more easily and even make phone calls from your Mac.
The free updates will come this fall, though app developers got a test version Monday as the company opened its 25th annual developers conference in San Francisco.
Here are the highlights:
Changes to Mac computers:
The next Mac system will be called Yosemite, after the national park, now that Apple is naming it after California locales rather than cats
You’ll be able to search for content on the computer and on the Internet at once
A Mail Drop feature will make it easier to send large files
The Safari Web browser will have more privacy controls and ways to share links more easily.
Changes to iPhones and iPads:
Like the new Mac OS, the iOS 8 system will have a universal search tool to cover both your device and the Internet
The new software will sport interactive notifications, so you can respond to a message without having to leave another app
A QuickType keyboard promises predictive typing suggestions
iOS 8 will have a built-in health-management tool to help people track their vital signs, diet and sleeping habits
Apple announced new technology for controlling garage doors, thermostats and other home systems, although the company didn’t say how all the pieces will be linked together through what it calls HomeKit.