Temple University will get first taste of upcoming Apple updates

There are new features for those seeking a tech diet, too.

Ian Bush
June 04, 2018 - 1:57 pm
Craig Federighi, Apple's senior vice president of Software Engineering, speaks during an announcement of new products at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference.

AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez

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SAN JOSE, Calif. (KYW Newsradio) — Apple will offer more ways for people to limit the time they spend on iPhones while introducing features designed to make its products even more indispensable.

The paradox emerged Monday as Apple executives previewed new versions of free software due out this fall.

The forthcoming controls are aimed at addressing criticism that devices are becoming increasingly addictive and distracting, especially for children during their formative years. Yet Apple made it clear it also hopes to make its devices and services even more alluring — and potentially irresistible — by creating new avenues for its digital assistant, Siri, to serve as a backup brain for its users. The company is also creating more entertainment options and new ways to communicate, including a way for up to 32 people to join a group video chat through FaceTime.

Software took the spotlight at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference — and one feature in particular puts Temple University students at the head of the class.

There's no need for carrying your wallet anymore: Temple students will be able to store their IDs in digital form on iPhone and Apple Watch. So forget about having to swipe, tap or even remember that plastic card.

"You can get access to places like your dorm or the library or events on campus. You can even pay for things like snacks, laundry or dinners," said Apple software developer Kevin Lynch.

Lynch said Temple is one of six universities getting the tech first, which will begin later this year. It works by way of the near field communication (NFC) capability built into the devices.

For the rest of us, there's more coming this fall.

"Say you're running late for a meeting. Siri will suggest you text the meeting organizer," explained Craig Federighi, Apple's senior vice president of Software Engineering.

Apple is trying to make Siri smarter, with suggested actions based on where you are and what you're doing. 

Federighi said iOS 12 users will be able to create shortcuts to automate repeated, multi-step tasks. 

The new Memoji puts you in emoji form. 

There's also an app that allows parents to set screen time "allowances" for kids — and themselves. Users can decide how much time they're allowed to spend with their devices each day.

"You get a summary of the time you're spending in apps," explained Federighi, "how much time you're spending, how often per hour you're picking up your phone and what's drawing you in, and what apps are sending you the most notifications."

Apple has been under pressure to address concerns over the use of electronic devices and potential negative effects on children's physical and mental health.

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Ryan Nakashima reported from San Francisco.

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