As WWDC 2023 drew to a close, we were left to reflect on a whole range of new hardware and software for the Apple family. That includes the long awaited Apple Vision Pro, as well as a new Apple Silicon-powered Mac Pro.
Apple introduced StandBy as part of the update. This feature allows you to park your iPhone on a MagSafe stand and watch it transform into a kind of home hub. It can display the time on a multitude of clock faces, as well as photos and widgets.
It's a really great feature, made even better by its versatility. The system will recognise MagSafe stands in different locations and remember your preferred settings for that space. For example, you might like a clock on your bedside table, but the news and weather in the kitchen, or your schedule and a Stocks widget at your desk.
"With the Always-On Display on iPhone 14 Pro," says speaker Craig Federighi, "it's always available."
And I think that same functionality will be found across the iPhone 15 range. That would mark the first instance of an Always-On Display on the base model iPhone.
But it makes sense. While it was hardly the stand-out feature of the presentation, it's clearly something Apple has worked to put together. It also only really works effectively with Always-On Display enabled. Without it, I can imagine it will either turn off as often as your screen normally would, or it will be a considerable battery drain.
It's a bit of a leap though. Previous screen spec leaks from sources in the industry suggested that the base models would retain the display technology currently employed.
Still, I'm holding out hope. After all, we all thought the Apple headset was called Reality Pro until yesterday, so they're certainly capable of pulling the wool over our eyes.
Whatever happens, we'll know for sure this autumn. The new range is expected to drop around September, in line with historic releases.