Apple Intelligence, iPadOS 18, iOS 18, and macOS Sequoia: what’s exciting?

Apple Intelligence?

Apple Intelligence was the biggest announcement, which felt mostly like repetition with few additions to what Apple had already presented. The tech industry should create rules or a code of conduct that governs how they name their products. Tech is confusing enough, and we don’t need product names to make it worse. Does AI now mean Artificial Intelligence and Apple Intelligence? We really don’t need all that drama!

Image generation

AI image generation has been hyped up over the last couple of months, with a lot of apps mushrooming with the technology. And Apple has jumped onto the wagon. Judging by the images they presented during the keynote, it’s not as complicated as other image-generative AI tools. We’ll know for sure once we try them ourselves. We can create animations, illustrations, and sketches whose details are really only limited by your imagination. We’d like to try that one and see if it can save time that we’d waste drawing diagrams or explaining something with a terrible sketch.

Proofread and rewrite

The proofreading and rewriting features are quite useful. We are curious to know if these will be as good as the ones currently available on the market. From the keynote, they seem to have most of the core features covered. They work across different apps, with options to choose tones and go through the suggested grammar corrections for your writing. The way Justin was excited about these; has he never heard of Grammarly or Quillbot? Or is he just excited to have figured out how they work?


Apple is introducing “Intelligence that understands you”. It’s sellable. After what feels like decades of language and image generation with AI, it’s refreshing to see action features that can simplify how we use our devices. The only problem is that I have had Siri turned off all my devices since it was first launched. Everything they presented in the keynote, I thought Siri already did that: help you check the weather and open specific images. Adding the image to Apple Notes was cool, though. We are curious: are you also part of the 1.5 billion daily Siri requests?


With the privacy architecture for the AI features that Apple presented, we’re a little optimistic about using the AI, especially considering how useful it is becoming. We love that Apple addressed the biggest AI issue, which most tech companies have refused to talk about or are openly abusing. That is probably why most of us love and trust Apple in the first place: control over our data. Our only problem is that some independent experts verify Apple’s privacy promise surrounding its AI features. We can’t help but wonder who these experts are and why we can’t verify it ourselves. It’s our data, right?

Another issue we have is how Siri doesn’t ask for permission when interacting with Private Cloud Compute. Let’s face it: we’ve come this far without AI, and while it is helpful and saves us time, sometimes it might not be worth giving up our data for something we can do ourselves. But, all things considered, we love that most of the AI features happen on the device without sending our data to any developer’s servers.


We can finally access ChatGPT without having to create or log into accounts. Who else finds that refreshing? You will asked each time to allow your data to be sent to ChatGPT if Siri can’t find the answer you’re looking for. Without an account, does OpenAI still store that data? That remains unclear.

All these AI features will be available on all the M-series iPad Pros, iPad Airs, MacBooks, and iMacs. But only the iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max will have them. Normally, we would be upset about excluding so many devices, but since we’re not 100% on board with the idea, we are not upset with that at all. Especially because these features seem to be integrated into the OS with no switch to turn them on and off. Siri, we’ve always been able to deactivate, but that doesn’t seem to be the case with Apple Intelligence. Am I the only one who thinks this name is absolutely ridiculous?

iPadOS 18

Now we know where developers are getting the annoying floating toolbar from. I seem to be the only one bothered by floating toolbars covering part of my notes. Everyone else on the team doesn’t see anything wrong with it. Surely, one of you, fantastic humans, can understand where I am coming from. No? At least we can move it to the sidebar, showing more options. Toolbars should remain anchored at the top. Who’s with me?


We definitely did not share the initial excitement with Craig when he first mentioned the Calculator app. It’s probably coming from years of bitness of having to look for your phone each time you want to do a simple calculation because your iPad didn’t have one. But we quickly caught on when he mentioned Math Notes. Saaay whaaaat?! But that was quickly watered down with the simple calculations. The MyScript Calculator already does that, we thought.

But the more features they unveiled, the more impressive the app became. We can combine our calculations with notes and use natural actions to get answers. And it looks like all of that is happening inside Apple Notes! The app even supports complex math information and can draw graphs. Do we still need to teach math in school, or can we save our children the hassle and have them learn other skills instead?

Apple Notes

Our team is split on smart script technology. Some of us like the idea of handwriting improvements; others don’t. I find it a bit unpleasant and, I imagine, distracting when taking notes. But others are embracing it because they have ugly handwriting. How do you feel about it? We also have text-to-handwriting conversion. Of course, we’ll be even more excited when we’ve actually tried it to see how accurately it can replicate our handwriting.

The spellcheck in Apple Notes looks a lot like the one in Goodnotes 6, which made us wonder: who’s idea was it? Goodnotes or Apple? We’ve loved creating space between sections of our notes in Apple Notes. A lot of note-takers love this feature, and in iPadOS 18, we’ll be able to create space between words and letters. These are the most exciting updates we have seen in Apple Notes for quite some time. Does it work with handwriting or only the one you convert from text? How exciting is this!?

Scribble-to-erase has a history of hit-and-miss, so we’ll jump for joy after testing it a couple of times. From the demo, it looks like the smartest version of the feature we have ever seen because it managed to erase exactly what was scribbled over. By the time they announced collapsable sections, I was about to collapse myself. From all the excitement, of course. Maybe it’s time to consider switching from our current handwriting note-taking apps.

AI image generation is also coming to Apple Notes. We can use it to improve our ugly drawings and even create some from scratch! I am seriously considering changing my go-to handwriting note-taking app. Seriously! Then Craig casually mentions that we can audio record and transcribe the recordings in Apple Notes. Doesn’t that require a whole 10-minute presentation? Digital note-taking just got better, and we can’t wait to get our hands on the new features in Apple Notes for iPadOS 18.


We also got a few exciting updates for SharePlay. These are minor, but they mean a lot to us because we’ve spent hours explaining how to do things to many people. Drawing on the screen is a welcome update, but the ability to control their devices is even better—unless they just want to learn how to do things. 

We really got one sentence about scenes in Freeform. To simmer down a bit, I reminded myself that we’re still using iPadOS on the iPad Pros.

iOS 18 

We like the idea of moving icons to the bottom or side of the screen. But, it would be better if we could move each app to the exact location we want on the screen. Android has been doing that for years now.

Custom colours for icons seem like a good idea because they look cooler—until you want to find an app. We go through tons of apps every day, and apps are easier to find when they have different and unique icon colours. We know the Apple Notes icon is yellow, and Noteful is blue. But if they are all red, we have to read the app names, which would slow you down. Maybe it only applies to us.

Minor updates

There were a number of features that were not big enough to get super excited about but are worth mentioning.

  • The new control gallery makes features for the control centre easily accessible. We are happy that we don’t have to go to our device settings anymore, and it’s great that we can resize the controls.
  • App lock is cool, and hiding apps from others is also cool. However, from the keynote, they don’t look very hidden. Maybe there’s something we’re missing. We were expecting hidden apps to disappear from your screen completely. But then again, how would you use them?
  • Contact access is great, too. It will definitely make recording videos for you guys a lot easier.
  • We have needed tapback improvement for what feels like forever. After all these years of waiting, we can’t even be excited about it because we’re tired. But we appreciate the ability to schedule messages and format them.  We never thought those features would be useful, but seeing them just opened a lot of possibilities. Text effects are fun!
  • The Mail features in iOS 18 have been in Gmail for years. Maybe those who don’t like Gmail can finally move to Apple Mail now.


Our team feels the new organisation in Photos makes more sense and is more intuitive. I wouldn’t know because my relationship with the Photos app is quite strange. I don’t take photos or videos of myself or my family because I like living in the moment. So, even going through photos and videos and wanting to organise them all sounds quite strange from my perspective. So, I am curious to know what features excited you most from all the changes coming to the Photos app in iOS 18.

macOS Sequioa (sekwoya)

Continuity would have been fun if two people could use the iPhone simultaneously. But, for security reasons, we get why Apple set it up the way it did. On a serious note, it will be helpful for those of us who are always misplacing our phones. At least you won’t waste time looking for it to do simple tasks. Overall, there weren’t a lot of exciting features specific to macOS.

Scroll to Top