(Bloomberg) -- Apple Inc. unveiled overhauled versions of its iPhone and iPad software, adding new features that let users make diary entries and turn their idle phones into smart displays.
The company debuted the features at its Worldwide Developers Conference, an event where it’s later expected to introduce its long-awaited mixed-reality headset. As part of iOS and iPadOS 17, users will also get improved auto-correct capabilities and can leave video messages for friends when calling on FaceTime.
The annual WWDC event is a showcase for Apple’s latest software — and an attempt to keep both its developers and customers locked in to its product ecosystem. The iPhone improvements are particularly crucial for the company since that product generates roughly half its revenue.
During the presentation, Apple’s shares neared a record high. But they pared their gains as it went on, trading up less than 1% at $182.61 as of 2:09 p.m. in New York.
An update to Apple Watch software, watchOS 10, will get a fresh interface that’s more focused on widgets. Unlike with the iPhone and iPad, apps have been less successful on Apple’s smartwatch, and this transition was previously reported by Bloomberg.
The new iPhone mode known as StandBy will let users turn their phone into, say, a clock when it’s dormant. The interface also includes widgets, home controls and other information.
In other moves, Apple is bringing its Health app to the iPad and adding a new adaptive audio mode to AirPods, which will now be able to switch in and out of noise canceling based on external surroundings. FaceTime is coming to Apple TV, and AirPlay capabilities will let users pair their device to a TV in a hotel room.
The company also showed off a new Mac operating system called Sonoma. It unveiled three revamped Macs earlier during the presentation.
(Updates with additional new capabilities in fifth paragraph.)
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