WWDC 2022: Things I want to be announced
WWDC22 will start on June 6 and I am curious to see what’s next for Apple platforms, and MacOS especially. There are many features I would like to see, but my strongest wishes revolve around these three specific things below.
1. A new Read Later service/app
As I’ve said before, I can’t believe the Reading List feature of Safari has stayed exactly the same since it was unveiled, back in 2012. In 2022, I want Apple to finally catch up with Instapaper, Readwise, Pocket, and now Matter, to name just a few.
The current Reading List of both MacOS and iOS is nothing more than a separated bookmark folder displayed as a list. Nothing wrong with that except that the list doesn’t tell the reader the length of an article or the reading time, you can’t “fave” or organise the articles you read, no highlight feature (despite the Quick Note highlight thingy), no way to automatically use Reader mode for items in the Reading List (this one makes no sense to me), no audio feature, etc.
I would like also to see Reading List as a standalone app, maybe an app including a tab showing the newsletters in your inbox, and why not subscribing to RSS feeds inside this app, in a separate tab? Basically the Podcast app, but for web pages. That’s what I want. I am somehow hopeful to see improvements there, as they added the “Shared with you” feature in many apps last year, which would fit perfectly in this new “Reader” app.
2. TextEdit on the Mac
Isn’t it time for Apple to treat its TextEdit app like a first-class citizen on the Mac? Microsoft did a simple but welcome revamp of Notepad for Windows 11, why not do the same Apple?
TextEdit is a great app already. It is reliable, fast, and simple. Yet, it needs to be modernised, like every app. What is TextEdit for? If, like me, you believe TextEdit is mostly for editing plain text documents, then it needs to embrace this identity, and TextEdit needs to adapt to it: the changes could be very simple, but some sort of syntax highlighting for a few languages would be great (HTML, CSS, Markdown, etc.). Line number and current line highlight would be a nice touch too.
If not, please Apple consider adding plain text support for Notes (and the option to export a Note as a text file on the Mac). Or maybe be more ambitious Apple, and transform TextEdit into a minimal but capable code editor, and include it as the fourth member of the iLife trio (Keynote, Pages, Numbers): isn’t it time a new app is added to this list? Heck, even if TextEdit only gets new typography, I’d be happy; currently the line spacing is way too small when in plain text mode for instance.1
Last but not least: a more capable iCloud. Right now everything works fine, and iCloud Drive has been very reliable for me. Better collaborative features and 3rd-party access to Drive would be a good start for iCloud in June 2022. I am thinking specifically of Blot, and on how it could one day use iCloud Drive instead of Dropbox.
But it’s on the web that there is room for the biggest improvements. iCloud dot com is very, very slow, not practical, and looks old now. Apple Maps on the web could be added, either on iCloud or as a dedicated website; as far as I know, only DuckDuckGo uses Apple Maps on the web.
And maybe this new Reader app I want could have its place on the web too.2
Nice to have
Here I am listing a few things that would be nice to see announced this year at the WWDC:
- internal linking within Reminders and Notes
- the end of the truncated words on iOS bookmarks
- smarter Siri when mixing two languages 3
- Apple Watch Complications Stack, à la iOS widgets
I know it won’t happen for now
While these features below would be nice to have, I’m pretty sure it won’t be announced for now:
- A smart, native content blocker in Safari 4
- RSS support outside of the Podcast app
- Apple News+, Apple Cash, Apple Card in more countries
Last year I got pretty lucky regarding what I wanted from Apple. Maybe this year too some of my wishes will come true.
Recently, I’ve been trying to only use TextEdit to write blog posts, and it works fine, especially thanks to Brett Terpstra’s Markdown Service Tools, but as I said, the typography is bad. So I now use uFocus, and it is fantastic: very fast, elegant, reliable. Craig Mod would love it. I think it will replace Drafts as my text editor.↩︎
Maybe it would be faster if Apple just bought Matter.↩︎
Asking French Siri to play a song with a title in English is a mess, and don’t get me started on asking English Siri for directions to a French location while driving for instance: makes everything pretty much useless.↩︎
Needless to say this would be great for my quest of uninstalling apps.↩︎