What’s New in Cocoa Touch 

Session 107 WWDC 2015

iOS 9 expands on adaptivity with Multitasking. Learn about additions to UIKit to support truly universal layout sizes and types. Get introduced to all-new frameworks and APIs for Cocoa Touch such as a new Contacts framework, text-editing gestures, enhancements to dynamics and visual effects, and much more. Come find out which sessions you won’t want to miss throughout the week.

Jason Beaver: Good afternoon.

Welcome to What’s New in Cocoa Touch.

I’m Jason Beaver, I’m one of the senior engineering managers in the iOS group.

There is a lot that’s new to discuss in iOS 9, but first I want to take a look back at some changes we’ve made over the past few years.

Since iOS 6 we’ve been laying the groundwork for major change in how applications are built for iOS and we’ve been rolling out the changes in each major release.

In iOS 6 we added autolayout.

This allows you to easily build a dynamic and versatile interface that responds to changes in available size and screen orientation, as well as localization.

In iOS 7 we introduced dynamic type and this lets you achieve beautiful typography in your application in a variety of users’ selectable text sizes.

And coupled with autolayout, your interface will adapt automatically to changes in the user’s selected text size and by adopting dynamic type, the system can make improvements to the text rendering and layout that your application will inherent for free.

In iOS 8 we made what is perhaps the biggest change.

We introduced the concept of adaptivity.

This is the concept that your application should adapt to changes in the running environment.

Fundamental to this concept is size classes.

Size classes drive structural changes to your applications’ user interface based on whether space is constrained in a particular dimension or not.

In the settings application shown here this is the identical code running on both an iPad and an iPhone.

The difference in size classes driven structural changes to the user interface.

Size classes drives the adaptivity of many parts of the iKit view controllers, view controller presentations, search results, action sheets, and many more, all of these adapt to the size class and to the available space that they have to work with.

When we introduced the concept of adaptivity last year it wasn’t clear why we were moving in this direction.

In applications we’re always full screen and they generally did not need to change their user interface structure while the application was running.

With the introduction of multitasking, the reason for the changes is now clear.

You’re no longer building two distinct experiences tailored to specific pieces of hardware.

You’re providing a continuum of experiences tailored to the size that your user is running the app at.

Adopting these foundational technologies, not only is your app ready for the entire range of hardware that we ship, it is also ready to support these new multitasking features and developers that we worked with that had already adopted all of these changes and in some cases literally only needed a matter of minutes to get their app ready to run seamlessly alongside our own apps.

One special case to deal with is picture-in-picture, if your application supports background media playback you can use new API in iOS 9 to enable your player to support picture-in-picture.

Keep in mind that with picture-in-picture as well as all of multitasking, your application needs to be a good citizen to make sure it is not interfering with the overall user experience.

We have a number of sessions on multitasking this week, Getting Started with Multitasking on iPad, Multitasking Essentials for Media-based Apps and Optimizing your App for Multitasking.

Let’s move on and talk about things that are new in iOS 9.

The first is autolayout.

We’re introducing a new UI layout guide class in cases where you would have used extra views in your autolayout constraints you now can use layout guides to avoid cluttering up your view hierarchy.

There are two layout guides we’re introducing by default, layout margins guide and readable content guide.

We can use these properties on UIView to allow more expressiveness in defining where within a view content should be drawn.

These supersede layout margins that we’ve introduced in iOS 8 and you should use layout guides in any new code you write and as you revisit old code you should replace margins with layout guides.

I want to take a moment though to talk about the second case, the readable content guide.

When you have large bodies of text, the length of the line has a great deal to do with the readability and legibility of that text.

If the lines are too wide, as we see here, it’s harder to see where a line begins and ends and it can be difficult to continue onto the next line when you’re reading.

Conversely, if the lines are too narrow your eye has to travel back too frequently which interrupts the flow of reading.

The optimal line length is dependent on many factors, including the font, the size, and line spacing, but by using the readable content guide, you can be assured that your text will be readable regardless of the user’s text size or the available space that your application has to render the text.

Let’s talk about how layout guides can be used to reduce the number of views in your application.

Let’s say we have a view that shows a number of planets and we want to show them all centered in their parent view or show them spread out along the x axis.

Before using autolayout constraints we would’ve had to introduce a number of extra views into the view hierarchy to do that.

We can now simply define the layout guides that define the proportion of the space that the view is using when laid out.

We also will create an additional set of constraints that will center the views and then simply by changing which set of constraints is active we get a nice animation like this.

In this case we’re changing all of the constraints at the same time but if we instead change the set of constraints at different times using a keyframe animation we can achieve a number of very interesting effects.

We’re also bringing the StackView over to iOS in iOS 9.

This allows you to manage a set of sub views as stack that can be arranged either horizontally or vertically, the StackView uses autolayout under the covers but manages all of the constraints for you.

It allows you to adjust the spacing alignment, it can allow you to adjust how the views are distributed within the available space either equally or proportionately.

StackViews also can be nested.

You can have a StackView as an element in another StackView allowing you to create very rich layouts.

These layouts will automatically adjust to the content being displayed as well as to the available space that’s there.

So we also introduced shortcuts bar.

This appears over the software keyboard or at the bottom of the screen when the hardware keyboard is attached.

This bar contains stock controls for things like bold, italic, underline and cut, copy and paste.

It can also be customized in your application.

Anything that conforms to the UI text input protocol can return an input-assistant item using this method.

UI text input-assistant item is a new class in iOS 9 and has two properties for specifying the leading and trailing bar-button groups so you can easily add your own elements in there.

Now, as you saw in the State of the Union, we no longer have to have the entire interface for your application in a single storyboard.

You can now link from one storyboard to another.

We also offer a way now to unwind segues.

[ Applause ]

Also as you saw, we now have full right-to-left support in the operating system.

If you have a localization for a right-to-left language and have linked to your app on iOS 9 this will happen automatically in your app as well.

All UIKit controls will automatically reverse.

Notice that navigation is reversed, all of the animations are reversed, layout of table view cells, even controls like sliders and switches are all reversed.

Collection view will automatically reverse its layout and will flow from right-to-left.

Here we see that the swipe to the leader mark requires a swipe to the right and marking as unread requires a swipe to the left.

There’s two properties on both view controller and view called semantic content attribute that let you specify how content should lay out.

By default, everything will flip automatically, but you can override the properties to customize that if it makes sense in your application.

There is also a method to get the layout direction for a particular content attribute.

The semantic content attribute has one of five values, the first is unspecified.

This is the default.

Unless you have a reason to change what UIKit is doing, this is the value you should leave it at.

If you have a set of controls that represent playback controls like play, fast forward and rewind, you can use the playback content attribute.

If you have a set of controls that represent or result in some sort of directional change in your UI, so let’s say text alignment controls, left, center, right in a text editor, you can use the spatial content attribute.

Finally, there is two additional values that lets you force either left to right or right-to-left layout.

Now, for images, UIKit can’t know whether an image should be flipped by default in all cases, things that represent user content like photographs, shouldn’t be flipped but things that represent controls in your application you may want to flip.

So we have a property or a method on UI image from right-to-left to allow you to tell us that you want to use a flipped image and also a property to ask if that image has been flipped.

I encourage you all to come to the new UIKit support for international interfaces and find out how you can make your app support right-to-left languages.

For accessibility you now have the ability to use more speech voices like Alex as well as high-quality voices in AV speech synthesis.

I encourage you to come out to iOS Accessibility to find out more about how to make your app accessible.

You also saw that we’re introducing a number of new text editing gestures in iOS 9.

These gestures can be performed either on the keyboard at the bottom of the screen or in the text area itself.

They allow you to move the insertion point indirectly, they allow you to select a word, sentence, or paragraph very easily just by multiple taps and also allow you to easily extend an existing selection.

Coupled with the shortcut bar we introduced, it allows you to easily access, copy and paste without moving up to the text.

Text interaction manipulation has never been easier or faster.

Now, there’s nothing you need to do in your application to adopt these text editing gestures, but if you have customized the gestures in a text view within your application, you should make sure they’re not conflicting with the new system text gestures.

In iOS 7 we added support for application to find keyboard, hardware keyboard commands.

App could have their own commands like command-N to create a new document.

This was a benefit to power users who already knew these commands but there was no way to discover what these commands are.

In iOS 9 we’re introducing a new keyboard command discoverability HUD and if you press and hold the command key on the hardware keyboard and hold it for just a moment, the HUD will appear and show you the set of commands that are available at that particular moment.

Notice that this is context dependent.

Depending on the state of your application at that time you’ll get a different set of commands.

So, instead of seeing the entire set and some enabled and some are disabled, you only see the ones that apply.

All you need to do to adopt this in your application is to set the discoverability title for each of your key commands.

UIKit will take care automatically to figure out what commands are applicable in that moment in time.

Let’s take a moment to talk about touch events.

When a touch is tracking on the screen there is some inherent lag between where the finger is and any resulting drawing that you see on the screen.

It simply takes time to scan the hardware to do all of the intermediate processing and drawing and then flush the results to that display.

This is called the touch-to-display latency.

Most users will never notice this latency under most circumstances.

It’s perceptable when the user moves their finger fast enough.

Despite the fact that iOS already has industry-leading touch-to-diplay latency, in iOS 9 we set out to dramatically improve this latency.

When a touch is tracking on the screen, UIKit is notifying the application with each screen refresh so that the application can update its state.

In some of our more recent hardware, the touches are updated more frequently than the display is.

So there is now a new method to get access to any intermediate touches since the last display refresh.

For drawing applications this can result in much smoother and more accurate drawing.

As a first step to improving that touch-to-display latency we now offer touch prediction as well.

This uses a sophisticated algorithm that looks at the touches velocity, acceleration and curvature to predict where the touch is headed.

That lets you reduce the apparent latency for drawing where the touch will be rather than where the touch is.

[ Applause ]

We went much further than that.

In addition to offering touch prediction, we have made a number of changes throughout the entire software stack to reduce the latency from over 60 milliseconds which, as I said, is already industry leading, to less than 30 milliseconds.

[ Applause ]

We have also introduced a number of changes in UIKit dynamics.

The first of these is now we support non-rectangular collision bounds.

[ Applause ]

In addition to rectangular we now support elliptical and path-based collisions and this results in much more realistic collision interactions.

We also support a wide variety of field behaviors.

We now have linear and radial gravity like you see here, spring, drag and velocity, or noise and turbulence fields like you see here, electric and magnetic fields as well.

We also support the ability for you to define your own field effects.

Finally, we have added a number of new additional attachment types.

Before we had a very simple way to attach two objects and if you wanted to constrain their movement in some way you had to set up a number of external constraints.

Now with these additional attachment types, it can dramatically simplify how you build your UI dynamics model.

We’re also adding the ability to animate the blur radius.

[ Applause ]

To let you receive beautiful effects here like you see here, moving into and out of spotlight.

We’ve also made a number of EPI changes in iOS 9 to optimize their use with Swift.

This is taking advantage of the better expressiveness that Swift offers and to improve compile-time type checking.

For nullability, you can now specify whether properties actions and return values can be nil or not.

We have gone through our entire API and defined where it’s valid to have nil arguments or nil return values or whether it is guaranteed not to be nil.

We also have lightweight generics.

This is a lightweight form of type parameterization that lets us better express Cocoa and Cocoa Touch APIs.

For example the sub views method on UI views can now be typed to return an array of UI views instead of an array of just ids.

You can find out more about this in What’s New in Swift.

New in iOS 9 is the ability for notifications to allow text input for the user or from the user in the same way as quick reply for text messages.

[ Applause ]

The UI user-notification action class has a new behavior property and if set to the text-input behavior, your notification has a text field allowing for a quick reply.

[ Applause ]

There is also an additional action parameters dictionary that allows you to customize the title of the Send button.

You can find more at What’s New in Notifications.

We’re also introducing a new SF Safari view controller and this allows you to display web content in a native app surrounded by all the key Safari UI elements that are already familiar to your users.

It even supports advanced features like Reader and autofill.

You can find more at Introducing Safari View Controller.

For iOS 9, we’re introducing a number of new extension points that allow you to extend other applications in the system.

For VPN we have three new extension points.

There is a packet-tunnel provider which allows you to build the client side of your own VPN-tunneling protocol.

There is an app-proxy provider that allows you to implement the client side of your own custom transparent network proxy protocol and a filter-control provider and filter-data provider that allows you to perform dynamic on-device content filtering.

For Safari there’s two new extension points.

Shared Links lets your application specify content that should appear in the shared links users feed.

The content blocking extension allows you to identify subsets of content or resources on a page and prevent them from showing.

For Spotlight, there’s now an extension that allows the system to index your application data and it can also do this in the background so you don’t have to fire up your application to re-index your apps content.

You can find out more at Introducing App Search.

Finally, audio units or core audio plug-ins that can act as musical instruments, audio effects or audio generators, and until now iOS users were limited to the built-in audio units provided by Apple.

In iOS 9 we added a new extension point and you can bring your audio units to iOS.

[ Applause ]

You can find more at Audio Units Extensions.

Many of you have asked, and I’m now pleased to announce that we’ve delivered an all-new Swift and Objective-C API for interacting with contacts.

[ Applause ]

Thank you.

You can find out more at Introducing the Contacts Framework for iOS in iOS 10.

For Wallet and Passkit, you can now provision cards from scratch in bank and merchant applications if you have a special entitlement.

You can also suppress ApplePay from coming up in situations where it would interfere with your application.

So say your application needs to display a barcode in an environment where there’s an NFC terminal present.

Normally that would make ApplePay appear.

You can suppress that so that your barcode can be scanned.

In core location, for apps linked against iOS 9 or later there are some changes to how the background location tracking works.

There is also a new bit of API on CL Location Manager to request a one-time location update if you don’t need ongoing updates to location, this is a much more efficient way to get the user’s current location.

[ Applause ]

For MapKit there is several new features with a map view, the first is access to 3d Flyover View.

[ Applause ]

You can now show traffic as well as the compass and scale and create your own custom callouts now.

[ Applause ]

In HealthKit you have direct real-time access to sensor data in Watch OS 2 and there is a number of new data types.

Tracking users intake of water, tracking their exposure to sunlight and reproductive health.

There is new APIs for better device tracking of HealthKit data, better support for deleting data and a new workout session API to track exercise.

We announced ResearchKit a few months ago to make it easy for developers and researchers to create apps for medical research.

ResearchKit now includes iPad support, new active tasks for PureTone Audiometry which is used to identify hearing threshold levels and also a simple reaction-time task to measure a user’s reaction time to an event.

There is also a new image capture step to use.

As you saw yesterday, we made a number of changes to HomeKit.

We now support detailed change notifications.

When a light gets turned on, you now get a specific delegate message identifying the characteristic and the accessory that changed.

So, you may get the particular light turning on instead of just the generic something in your house changed notification.

HomeKit also has four predefined action sets when you wake up in the morning, when you leave, when you arrive home, when you go to bed, and you can implement standard actions with these.

Things like turning off the lights, locking the doors, making sure the garage is closed.

Things like that, all without requiring any user configuration.

In iOS 8 you can create a timer trigger to allow you to execute a scene on a schedule.

In iOS 9 you can now create much more complicated triggers.

For example, you know, when this door is unlocked and this motion sensor is detecting motion and it is 30 minutes after sunset do something.

Of course HomeKit is available on the Watch and you can use it to control devices within your home directly from your watch.

Wi-fi enabled accessories can now be accessed remotely even if you don’t have an Apple TV.

You will be able to communicate with them directly through iCloud and bluetooth-enabled accessories can be automatically bridged over Wi-Fi.

Even if you are out of Bluetooth range with an accessory, you can still control it.

Finally, we’ve included standard definitions of a number of new items within your house.

For CloudKit, we have updated the limits and the pricing for public databases but much more exciting we have now offered CloudKit Web Services to integrate with your web applications.

[ Applause ]

There are two sessions discussing CloudKit this week: What’s New in CloudKit and CloudKit Tips and Tricks.

So until now the UI document and action controller would create copies of every document sent to another app.

Now, with open in place, apps can request to open documents directly if they’re stored in iCloud.

Adoption consists of adding a key to your info.plist to declare conformance in implementing a new delegate method to opening the document directly.

We’ll discuss this at Building Document-Based Apps.

Now, many applications contain resources that are not needed when a user first starts your application, including every resource your app might ever need makes your app bundle significantly larger, slows down the installation and can even push you over the OTA limit which can impact your sales.

So to address this we’re introducing on-demand resources.

Your application is uploaded as single package exactly like you do today, but content can be downloaded dynamically when the application needs it.

These assets are intelligently cached using heuristics based on your input as well as user behavior.

In Xcode, assets are grouped together using simple tags and we’re introducing a new class called NS Bundle Resource Request that allows you to request all of the resources with a given tag.

Once those resources have downloaded you can use familiar API to access them, things like UI Image, image named.

There is even a way to test this in Xcode to simulate not having the resources and requesting them from the server, Xcode will act as the server and deliver those resources to your application.

Now another new technology we’re introducing to address your application size is app slicing.

Now, applications often have assets and executable content that aren’t relevant to the hardware that the user has installed it in.

This slicing takes care of delivering just the resources and executable slices that that user’s device needs.

Using app slicing the App Store will generate automatically and deliver tailored variants of your applications to all devices running iOS 9 and these will only contain the resources and executable slices pertinent to that device.

This happens on the server so the extraneous content isn’t even downloaded.

This saves installation time and can hopefully even bring the app under the OTA limit.

We’re also introducing a new NS data asset class which allows you to easily fetch content tailored to the memory and graphics capability of your device.

Now for Game Center we have added guest players which allows for new configurations in Game Center multiplayer.

We’ve also unified the Game Center server environment to streamline development and testing.

Finally we’re introducing ReplayKit which provides a new way to share game experiences.

It allows your apps to easily record audio and visuals and share them with other users.

In iOS 9 SpriteKit is now Metal-backed on systems that support it.

It is open GL on systems that don’t support Metal.

This happens automatically without your involvement.

There is also an all new action editor and of course it is integrated tightly with on demand resources.

You can find out more at What’s New in SpriteKit.

For SceneKit there is an all-new scene editor available in Xcode 7 that supports particles, physics, actions, and much more.

There is also a ton of new features in SceneKit itself.

Things like scene transitions, audio nodes, Model I/O, ambient occlusion and light maps and many other features.

Now while SpriteKit and SceneKit are fantastic frameworks for building the graphical interface for a game, there is far more to a great game than just the graphics.

Games have entities and components, they have agents which are autonomous objects within your game that have goals and behaviors.

You need path-finding algorithms to allow your agents to navigate around your game and you need AI for allowing the agents to decide what moves they’re going to make.

All of the elements you need to build really engaging gameplay can be found now in GameplayKit and you can find out more at Introducing GameplayKit.

Finally, of course, we’re introducing WatchOS 2.

In addition to direct access to existing frameworks, there is now new frameworks such as Watch connectivity for connecting to your app on the phone and WatchKit for building Watch face complications.

You can find out more at Introducing WatchKit for WatchOS 2 for an overview of all of the sessions this week, the Talk About WatchOS 2.

For more information, there is, of course, the documentation, there is the online forums, developer technical support.

Thanks. I hope you have a great week.

[ Applause ]

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