WWDC 2019: Keynote highlights a massive problem with Apple

Apple has a broad ecosystem, but there's really only one thing that developers (and for that matter, users of Apple products care about.
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor

Apple has a problem. A big problem. And it's a problem that's highlighted the most whenever the WWDC keynote rolls around.

Sure, Apple likes to boast about sales, and how much money it is handing over to developers, and how it might even unveil a new product or two. But there's really only one thing that developers (and for that matter, users of Apple products) care about, and this is a real problem for Apple.

That thing is iOS.

Must read: How tough are Apple's MacBook Pro laptops?

That's all that we want to know about this week.

We don't care about how many new stores Apple has opened, or how much cash it's passed on to developers, how many people using its services, or even some major bit of kit like the anticipated unveiling of the new Mac Pro.

The real star of the show is iOS.

A free operating system.

Sure, an operating system that Apple will push out to hundreds of millions of users within weeks of launch.

But it's still a free operating system. And a lot of the new stuff that Apple will be highlighting won't be stuff that iOS developers will be able to leverage.

And to top that off, I've no doubt that some of the new features that Apple will be highlighting in iOS 13 will be features "borrowed" from apps that iOS developers created.

Every iOS release seems to signal the end of the line for a number of really good iOS apps. Sure, it's nice for those features to be baked directly into the OS, but it's also a big shame for the developers who have put their heart and soul into a project.

And the problem is that as iOS matures, there's actually less new, exciting stuff, and more window dressing and performance optimizations. Yeah, nice stuff, but it's not the sort of stuff that excites.

Apple WWDC 2019 keynote: Scenes and surprises

Do you think that the majority of the focus of the WWDC keynote being on iOS is a problem? Let me know!

More WWDC 2019 coverage:

Editorial standards