Apple announced that this year’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) will be held in June, and will be online-only for the first time because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The news comes directly from an Apple press release, and it confirms Apple will be holding the event in June, as it does every year. Like previous events, it will be a chance for developers to see the newest versions of iOS, MacOS, iPadOS, and Apple’s other software enterprises — but unlike the previous 30 events, there won’t be a physical event for developers and journalists.
Instead, every single part of the conference will be delivered in an online format. That means no live audience reactions to the keynote and the various sessions running throughout the event.
“We are delivering WWDC 2020 this June in an innovative way to millions of developers around the world, bringing the entire developer community together with a new experience,” Phil Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing, said in a statement.
Apple put a positive spin on the news, clouding it in its signature progressive atmosphere. However, it didn’t shy away from the looming shadow of the coronavirus, which also had a big part to play in Apple’s decision, as Schiller’s statement said.
“The current health situation has required that we create a new WWDC 2020 format that delivers a full program with an online keynote and sessions, offering a great learning experience for our entire developer community, all around the world.”
Speculation that WWDC 2020 would follow other major events and be canceled due to the ongoing coronavirus crisis and the fact Apple has been able to turn this into a positive experience should be a learning experience for many other companies, which will likely have to consider canceling similar events as the outbreak continues. We’ll bring you more as it develops.
The photo accompanying the announcement resembles a familiar sight: The lid of a MacBook, covered in stickers. That could mean a focus on the Mac this time around and could play into upcoming rumors about a switch to Arm-powered MacBooks.
We also expect to hear more about the next versions of iOS, watchOS, and much more.