WWDC: Apple Has Jumped to Light Speed

There was a universe of technology unleashed at the WWDC Keynote this morning. It was designed to amaze, overload and galvanize developers. But what about the customers?

This morning, Tim Cook and his team set the world on fire with enough new technology to keep the whole Apple world busy for months and months. (And the competition in nervous breakdown.) Both digesting the technology and understanding how it will impact customers will be a challenge.

If you followed the Keynote live, hopefully at TMO , then you know the feeling: sensory and technical overload. But then, that’s exactly what the Keynote is designed to do: make the experience of WWDC so overwhelming that it both numbs then ignites the senses of the developers.

In times past, the WWDC Keynote presentations could be directly and immediately linked to the customer. One could come back from WWDC as both a developer or a technology leader, with a CD/DVD or two or three in hand, and press most of the technologies into service as beta products.

Nowadays, however, the breadth and scope of Apple’s technologies have far reaching consequences. The percolation of services into the cloud demands a serious decision and a greater commitment by the customer. The services and features of Mountain Lion and iOS 6 will require some study to see if they fit in with personal needs and preferences.

WWDC recapA full and immediate embrace of everything announced this morning is hardly possible for the average Apple customer. It will take some time for developers absorb all that was presented, with thousands of new APIs, and it will take some time more for customers to wade through all the implications and decide how to integrate the technologies their lives.

For example, our iOS devices are always on, but often we put our Macs in a sleep that disconnects them from the Internet. The technologies Apple is delivering these days suggest that our Macs, also, should never be isolated, never disconnected. And that raises security issues. But then sandboxing and Apple signed certificates help offset the risks. Perhaps.

In addition to all that, the technologies that Apple is developing are increasingly harder to evaluate in isolation. Features of OS X and iOS are no longer just enhancements of a UNIX OS, they are deeply interwoven into the fabric of the Internet.

For example, mapping, dictation, Siri in cars, AirPlay on the Mac, notifications, iCloud, FaceTime on cellular networks, Game Center, Passbook, Facebook and Twitter integration all blur the lines beween personal computing and the social mind. That makes the implications of what we adopt and what we do tougher to understand and evaluate. Welcome to light speed.

Anyway, In time, things will settle just enough for all of here at TMO to make sense of what we heard this morning and help you navigate through it. That is, after the shell shock dissipates.