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Apple Moves WWDC Back One Month To Show Developers "Panther" Version Of Mac OS X

Apple Moves WWDC Back One Month To Show Developers "Panther" Version Of Mac OS X

by , 10:00 AM EST, March 21st, 2003

Apple is full of surprises this week. While many casual observers may have been surprised by the appointment of former vice president Al Gore to Apple's board of directors, long time Apple watchers will be surprised to learn that the World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC) has been moved not only by time, back a month to June, but also from San Jose to San Francisco. The WWDC will now be held from June 23-27 in San Francisco's Moscone Center. The event was originally scheduled from May 19-23.

The Moscone Center is the same facility that hosts Macworld San Francisco. The Moscone offers a variety of convention-related facilities, and can hold simultaneous events. Hosting an event at the Moscone does not require the giant show floors that Macworld that makes up most of what most people typically think of as "Macworld." It is more likely that meeting rooms, the lecture halls, and other related facilities are what is drawing Apple to move the event.

What will also be seen as surprising by many will be the reason for the move. Apple specifically says that this year's WWDC is being moved "in order to provide developers with a more complete preview release of the next version of Mac OS X, code named 'Panther.'"

Apple's press release on the issue:

Apple today announced that it has rescheduled its 2003 Worldwide Developers Conference in order to provide developers with a more complete preview release of the next version of Mac OS X, code named "Panther." Originally scheduled for May 19-23 in San Jose, the conference will now be held June 23-27 at San Francisco's Moscone Center.

"Our annual Worldwide Developers Conference provides our developers an in-depth look at the future of the Mac platform, and giving everyone a preview release of Panther is the best way to do that," said Ron Okamoto, Apple's vice president of Worldwide Developer Relations. "Moving to June ensures that every developer will leave the event with a copy of Panther in their hands."

As part of the move, Apple has also extended Early Bird Registration by more than a month. Early Bird Registration provides developers with a US$300 discount. Apple also says that developers who have already registered for WWDC 2003 can contact the Apple Developer Connection through one of the worldwide e-mail or phone support lines at the ADC Web site. If you want more information on the WWDC, including registration information, please visit the WWDC Web site.

The Mac Observer Spin:

Well knock us upside the head and call us sally: We specifically were not expecting a move such as this. The WWDC has been held in May in San Jose for more years than we can remember. Moving the event to San Francisco's Moscone Center, too, is unprecedented in recent memory.

We also want to specifically point out that Apple had certainly already announced this year's event, as the banners and other advertisements running at TMO show. Making these sorts of changes after having announced the event, after booking facilities in San Jose, after many developers have made plans, and so soon before the scheduled events of Macworld New York is nothing short of astounding. The company must be very interested in promoting Panther to developers, which is also interesting since Jaguar is relatively new. The whole thing is curious, and we look forward to whatever is going to happen at the event.

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