By adding new maps and more FaceTime, iOS 6 hits major marks (updated)

CNET's review for the iPhone 5 is here! Make sure to check back and see our review of iOS 6 as soon as it becomes publicly available.

Editors' note:This First Take was originally posted on June 11, 2012, at the time of the WWDC Keynote. We are updating this post with changes to the iOS announced today at the Apple event.

During the Apple event today, the company announced the latest version of the operating system that powers its popular mobile devices. Scott Forstall, Apple's SVP of iOS, promises that iOS 6 will bring 200 new features, including tighter Facebook integration, an empowered Siri voice assistant, and the capability to conduct FaceTime calls over a cellular network.

Yet, it's Apple's new Maps app that was easily the star of the show. Created by the company, the app finally adds turn-by-turn directions along with info cards for businesses, a "flyover mode" when searching for an address, and a full 3D satellite view that displays buildings, terrain, and landmarks. There will be much more, of course, but even at this early point it's clear that Apple has filled a few gaping holes on our iOS wish list.… Read more

Does iOS 6's Auto Layout hint that bigger iPhone will launch?

Apple's iOS 6 software development kit comes with a new Auto Layout feature. And now, some are wondering whether that indicates Apple will be launching a new iPhone this year with a larger screen.

Auto Layout essentially allows developers to establish parameters for how user interface elements show up on a screen. Depending on a device's resolution, those elements will move to their correct place, based on the parameters established by the developer.

TechCrunch yesterday asked whether that feature indicates an iPhone with a larger display will launch soon. The blog said that it spoke with one developer … Read more

What I'd like to see on next year's MacBook Pros

We knew new MacBooks were on their way sooner or later, and anyone who held back to buy a new model (myself included) found themselves rewarded with an across-the-board set of updates.

I had my own wish list for what I wanted to see in the next MacBook, and surprisingly, many of my requests were met...in the Retina Display MacBook Pro.

Aside from that exciting and extremely expensive $2,199 machine, however, Apple's new lineup of MacBooks doesn't differ all that much from last year's lineup. Unless you want to spend north of $2,000, your Apple upgrade path for laptops involves choosing either an Air or a thicker Pro.

The future of Apple's MacBook Pros looks to reside in that newly designed Retina Display model, whether you like it or not. If that's the case -- and in the future these redesigned Pros become the core of Apple's product line -- here's what I'd want to see.… Read more

Thin is in for PC, MacBook -- upgrades out

The upgradable computer is under attack.

In case you haven't noticed, Apple and every other first-tier PC maker on the planet are pushing thin laptops, not to mention even thinner tablets. Problem is, really thin computers are, by design, "sealed." That means, fewer and fewer upgradable computers.

In fact, these days the only chance you'll have to upgrade most ultrabooks and MacBooks is when you order them online. After that, you're stuck with the configuration.

As is the case with the Retina MacBook Pro. "Unlike previous generations of MacBook Pros, the MacBook Pro with … Read more

Apple fans, don't expect a Siri button in your car anytime soon

Among the deluge of new features Apple talked up in the keynote for WWDC, integrating Siri with cars, in conjunction with automakers such as BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Audi, Honda, and GM, generated a lot of buzz. Siri has proved a popular voice command feature in the latest iOS, and so naturally users would want that functionality integrated into their cars.

But, knowing how the auto industry works, I was skeptical about a number of aspects of this announcement. I could not believe automakers would actually put dedicated buttons just for Siri in their cars. They would also not necessarily want to … Read more

WWDC 2012 rumor scorecard: The hits and the misses

Another year, another WWDC keynote in the bag.

In case you missed it, Apple this week refreshed its notebook lineup, priced OS X Mountain Lion, and took the wraps off iOS 6, which will be released in the fall. There were other things, of course, but those three were the biggies.

Now that the dust has cleared, it's a good time to look back at the top rumors that made the rounds ahead of the event, and see how they panned out.


Rumor: MacBooks with "Retina" displays The so-called Retina Display is a marketing term for … Read more

The Once and Future Mac desktop: sorting fact from rumor post-WWDC

Amid much back-and-forth this week on the future of Apple's Mac Pro, iMac, and Mac Mini desktops, it seems worth recapping what we know for sure, as well as what we don't.

Fact: Apple updated the Mac Pro on Monday, albeit with a minor CPU tweak.

Shortly after the end of Apple's World Wide Developer's Conference keynote speech, Apple added its new MacBook Air and MacBook Pro laptops to its online store. Above each laptop's picture, you will still find a little "new" icon, indicating the updated systems. Surprisingly, the Mac Pro also … Read more

Retina MacBook Pro is the least repairable to date

Following the release and immediate availability of the next-generation Retina MacBook Pro at the WWDC 2012 keynote address, the folks over at iFixIt jumped on the opportunity to take it apart and see exactly what makes this new computer tick. While the MacBook Pro contains some new and convenient features, Apple's approach for it has left out many user serviceable options and made it the least fixable MacBook Pro that Apple has ever made.

A welcome feature of the new MacBook Pro is, of course, its high-quality display, but in addition Apple has included some other neat features. The … Read more

Apple's Retina MacBook Pro ad: Lest you forget it's 'radical'

That new Retina MacBook Pro is a radical design. Apple's new TV ad doesn't want you to forget that.

The commercial, with a voiceover by Peter Coyote, seems effective in getting across the idea that Apple has fused the eye-popping Retina Display with an "impossibly thin" chassis.

And -- if the ad is indeed an accurate representation -- shows that the 15.4-inch IPS display has pretty decent viewing angles, which is IPS tech's calling card.

It will be interesting to see how many of the $2,200-and-up laptops Apple sells. Will it be just … Read more

Inside the 2012 MacBook Air: Apple overhauls the engine

The updated MacBook Air doesn't look new on the outside, but the inside is a different story.

That story mostly revolves around Ivy Bridge, Intel's new 22-nanometer processor that boasts upgraded graphics silicon ("up to 60 percent faster graphics," says Apple). But there are a few more subtle changes, too, according to iFixit's teardown.

Intel's new engine: iFixit found a Core i5-3427U 1.8GHz chip. That comes with Turbo Boost, which can ratchet up the speed to 2.8GHz, and Intel's HD 4000 graphics. Not surprisingly, the Core i5 is Intel's most … Read more