This has been the most important WWDC since the introduction of the iPhone SDK, 6 years ago.
On the really incredible amount of new features, for both developers and users, I will highlight two things:
1: App Extensions. Think of it as a mini version of your app that can be opened in the context of an another app. Today, in Safari, you can share links with Twitter and Facebook: when you share an URL, a small dialog appears, this is an extension of Twitter or Facebook, inside Safari. With iOS 8, any app can appear in this sharing menu and have a small interface inside Safari, to process the current web page. This is not limited to Safari, but in fact any apps can use extensions provided by your app. It’s really a secure and easy way to seamlessly share datas between apps.
I think that App Extensions will completely modify the way we use and develop apps, a lot of new features are now possible: we stand today on the edge of a New Frontier for iOS!
2 : Swift, of course. I really like Objective-C, the grammar is very small, and there has been a number of really good additions to streamline the development like ARC and Objects literals. Now, we have a brand new language, designed to be the iOS / OSX developers lingua franca for the next 10-15 years, and I’m a little scared! Swift looks modern and brilliant with function as first class citizens, a REPL, inferred type, a powerful case pattern matching, tupples etc… But it’s the unknown…
We’re at the Year Zero of this new language and I’m a little afraid to leave behind me a really good friend.
And, of course, I’m also excited: it’s so good to be an iOS developer!