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The 4 biggest UI trends shaping Apple’s future

This week is Apple’s biggest event of the year—the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC). It’s not where Apple announces new hardware like phones or tablets, but it is where Apple reveals the future of its software platforms. And at this year’s keynote, Apple announced dozens of new features for iOS, iPadOS, WatchOS, tvOS, and macOS.

Most of these updates are iterative improvements to apps like iMessages or platforms like AppleTV. But when you add them up, you start to see important trends within these updates.

Apple is strategically evolving its interfaces in four ways that were clear during the WWDC keynote—aggressively leveraging artificial intelligence, letting you switch smartphone modes, leaning in to virtual presence, and doing the thing none of us can resist in the age of constant connectivity: tuning everyone else out.

EVERYTHING IS AI

Apple has never been considered the leader of artificial intelligence research that Google or Facebook might be. But Apple demonstrated at WWDC that it is aggressively, and invisibly, working AI into its interface to shape new experiences.

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