Another Apple Live event is the books and not surprisingly we have some opinions. As a mobile developer we have a lot of stake in the progression of the iPhone and its OS X, considering how much business comes from Apple users. So when conference time rolled around we came together to sit back and see what Apple had to offer.

And after it was all said and done, what did the Arctic Empire team think of the conference? Meh. Sure, there was the iWatch Apple Watch and Apple Pay, but apart from that nothing really stood out as imaginative or truly innovative. As consumers and developers we came away underwhelmed.

That’s not to say our Apple loyalty has faltered (I am writing this on a Mac after all), but I think it’s safe to say the future of Apple won’t be in our pockets, or wrists, anytime soon. But lets not get ahead of ourselves, here’s our thoughts on the big 4 of Apple Live 2014.

 

iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6+ 

We all know going into a September Apple conference means a new iPhone announcement is inevitable. What we never know is what’s going to make us want to throw our old iPhone 5s in the trash for the new model. Fortunately, after this conference all our phones will remain safely in our pockets.

Apple covered the checklist of feature improvements but ultimately failed to capture our imaginations. Sure, you got a bigger screen, better CPU, more megapixels in your camera, but do any of those translate as major influencers to us, the average consumer? Not really. The feature that really stood out to us would have to be the Apple Pay integration. With Apple’s emphasis on Near Field Communication (NFC) you can expect the feature to take on a larger role in the future of retail now that it’s built in natively.

Now with our developer hats on, what did we think of the announcements? Our designer Rico said it best: “how many screen sizes do we need to developer for now?” Oh well, at least the prophecies were true.

 

 

iOS 8

 There really isn’t much to say on this considering Apple didn’t have much to say itself. Redesigned messaging app, improved notifications, a health app and…that was really it. Well, we look forward to hearing some more details on the new iOS.

 

Apple Watch

…and one more thing. We all knew what was coming when Tim Cook spoke that famous line but still we couldn’t take our eyes off the screen. The Apple Watch is beautiful, well designed, intuitive but more importantly, expensive. Too expensive.

When the Apple Watch features were being highlighted, we went into The Price is Right mode and started guessing prices. Ranging from $99 – $299, we were all sadly disappointed. I guess we’ll all just wait for a price drop; we still have our iPhones to check the time after all.

But hey, thanks to Blackberry we have extensive experience developing for a square screen like the one on the Apple Watch. That’s a big development plus for Arctic Empire.

 

So overall, what did Arctic Empire think of the conference as a whole? It was a little too long and a bit disappointing. The conference really made us long for Steve Jobs and the great things he did for Apple, product and advertising wise. Of course as a business we’ll be picking up the new products for development purposes but as individuals, I think we can all wait until next September for the iPhone 6++.