The Apple Worldwide Developers Conference, commonly abbreviated WWDC, is a conference held annually in California by Apple Inc. The conference is primarily used by Apple to showcase its new software and technologies for developers, as well as offering hands-on labs and feedback sessions. The number of attendees usually varies between 2,000 to 4,200 developers; however, during WWDC 2007, Steve Jobs noted that there were over 5,000 attendees. WWDC 2008–2010 were capped and sold out at 5,000 attendees (5,200 including special attendees).

WWDC 2011, at Moscone Center


All attendees have to sign a non-disclosure agreement covering the sessions and other material handed out at WWDC. In the past, the keynote was also covered by the NDA, but Apple in recent years has webcast the keynote address to an audience much wider than just developers. Before 2002, WWDC was not a place for hardware announcements, but Apple deviated from that principle in 2002 when it announced the rack mounted server Xserve, in 2003 with the introduction of the consumer-oriented iSight and the Power Mac G5, in 2004 with the introduction of redesigned Apple Cinema Displays, in 2005, when an announcement was made that Apple Computer would start the transition of their computers from IBM's PowerPC microprocessor line to Intel's line of x86 processors, and in 2006 with the release of the Xeon-based Mac Pro and Xserve.

In 2003, WWDC was merged with another Apple trade show called QuickTime Live. The number of QuickTime sessions was increased, and the Apple Design Awards were joined by Apple Design Awards for QuickTime Content. At the same time, more enterprise-oriented content was added, focusing a lot on the Xserve and Mac OS X Server operating system.


The first WWDC was held in Monterey, California in 1983. Until 2002, WWDC was held in mid-May. From 2003 to 2005 it was held in June to better distribute Apple's show commitments. In 2006, WWDC was moved to August due to scheduling conflicts at the Moscone Center. Since 1998 the conference generally starts with a keynote presentation which has been delivered by Apple CEO Steve Jobs, resulting in the event becoming known as "Stevenotes". Recent WWDC's have focused on demonstrating and distributing preview versions of upcoming Mac OS X versions.

WWDC'95's primary emphasis was a new component technology called "OpenDoc"; a software component technology that allowed end users to compile an application from components offering features they desired most. Apple as one of the OpenDoc consortium (which included Adobe, Lotus, and others) touted OpenDoc as the future foundation for application structure under Mac OS. As proof of the concept, Apple demonstrated a new end-user product called CyberDog, a comprehensive Internet application component suite offering users an integrated browser, email, FTP, telnet, finger and other services built completely of user-exchangeable OpenDoc components. Claris Works, a principle product in Apple's wholly owned subsidiary Claris Corporation, was demonstrated as an example of a pre-OpenDoc component architecture application modified to enable it to contain functional OpenDoc components.
WWDC'96 focused almost entirely on the Copland project, which by this time was able to be demonstrated to some degree. Gil Amelio stated that the system was on-schedule to ship in beta form in later summer with an initial commercial release in the very late fall. However, very few "live" demos were offered, and no beta of the operating system was offered.
WWDC'97 was the first show after the purchase of NeXT, and focused on the efforts to use OpenStep as the foundation of the next Mac OS. The plan at that time was to introduce a new system then known as Rhapsody, which would consist of a version of OpenStep modified with a more Mac-like look and feel, the Yellow Box, along with a Blue Box that allowed existing Mac applications to run under OS emulation. The show focused primarily on the work in progress, including a short history of the development efforts since the two development teams had been merged on February 4. Several new additions to the system were also demonstrated, including tabbed and outline views, and a new object-based graphics layer (NSBezier).
In response to developer comments about the new operating system, the "big announcement" at WWDC'98 was the introduction of Carbon. Carbon was effectively a version of the "classic" Mac OS API implemented on OpenStep. Under the original Rhapsody plans, classic applications would run in sandboxed installation of the classic Mac OS, (called the Blue Box) and have no access to the new Mac OS X features. To receive new features, such as protected memory and preemptive multitasking, developers would have to rewrite their applications using the Yellow Box API. Developer complaints about the major porting effort to what was then a shrinking market and warnings that they might simply abandon the platform, led Apple to reconsider the original plan. Carbon addressed the problem by dramatically reducing the effort needed, while exposing some of the new functionality of the underlying OS. Another major introduction at WWDC'98 was the Quartz imaging model, which replaced Display PostScript with something akin to "display PDF". Although the reasons for this switch remain unclear, Quartz also included better support for the existing QuickDraw model from the classic OS, as well (as it was later learned) as Java2D. Supporting QuickDraw directly in the graphics model also led to a related announcement, that the Blue Box would now be "invisible", integrated into the existing desktop as opposed to an entirely separate window.
WWDC'99 was essentially a "progress report" as the plans outlined in WWDC'98 came to fruition. Three major announcements were the "opening" of the operating system underlying the new OS as Darwin, improvements to the Macintosh Finder, and the replacement of QuickDraw 3D with OpenGL as the primary 3D API. The system formerly known as OpenStep, and referred to during development as "Yellow Box" was formally re-named "Cocoa". 2563 developers attended.
Much the same as WWDC'99, 2000 was another "progress report" on the way to the upcoming release of Mac OS X. Recent changes included a modified Dock and improved versions of the developer tools. "Developer Preview 4" was released at the show, with the commercial release pushed back to January 2001. Additionally, WebObjects was dropped in price to a flat fee of $699 US. Approximately 3600 developers attended. For the bash held May 18, the band The Rippingtons played at the Apple campus.
Mac OS X had only recently been released, but WWDC'01 added the first release of Mac OS X Server shipping and WebObjects 5. Over 4000 developers attended. Leather jackets with a large blue "X" embroidered on the back were distributed to attendees.
Mac OS X v.10.2, QuickTime 6 and Rendezvous (now known as Bonjour) were presented.[1] Apple also said farewell to Mac OS 9 with a mock funeral, and told the developers that there would be no more Mac OS 9 development, reinforcing that the future of the Mac was now entirely on Mac OS X.[2]
WWDC'03 demonstrated the Power Mac G5, distributed a preview of OS X Panther (10.3), and the introduction of the "iApps:" iPhoto, iMovie, iDVD, etc. Attendees received an iSight web camera. Originally scheduled for May 19 to May 23 in San Jose, WWDC'03 was rescheduled for June 23 to June 27 at San Francisco's Moscone Center.
WWDC 2004 took place from June 28 to July 2. Steve noted that 3500 developers attended and that was a 17% increase from 2003. New displays were introduced in 23 and 30-inch widescreen. iTunes 4.9, the first version with integrated podcast support, was demoed by Jobs. Mac OS X Tiger (10.4) was also previewed. All attendees received a developer preview of Tiger, a simple grey t-shirt with the Apple logo on the front and "WWDC2004" on the back, a backpack capable of holding a 17-inch PowerBook, and a copy of Apple Remote Desktop 2.0. For the bash held July 1, the band Jimmy Eat World played at the Apple campus. Attendees were taken by bus from Moscone West to the Apple Campus in Cupertino.
WWDC 2005 took place from June 6 to June 10. After a basic market update, Jobs announced that Apple would transition to Intel processors and the x86 platform. The keynote featured developers from Wolfram Research, who discussed their experience porting Mathematica to Mac OS X on the Intel platform. 3800 attendees from 45 countries attended the event. There were 110 lab sessions, 95 presentation sessions, and 500+ Apple engineers on site. For the bash held June 9, the band The Wallflowers played at the Apple campus. Attendees were taken by bus from Moscone West to the Apple Campus in Cupertino.
WWDC 2006 took place from August 7 to August 11 in Moscone West, San Francisco with the keynote presentation hosted by Steve Jobs. As expected, the Mac Pro was announced as a replacement to the Power Mac G5 that was previously Apple's "pro" desktop computer, and the last remaining PowerPC-based Mac. The standard Mac Pro featured two 2.66 GHz dual core Xeon (Woodcrest) processors, 1 GB RAM, 250 GB hard drive, and a 256 MB video card. An Xserve update was also announced, based as well on the dual core Xeons. Redundant power and Lights Out Management were additional product improvements to Apple's server lineup. While certain key Mac OS X improvements were kept "close to the vest," there were 10 improvements announced for OS X in its next iteration, Mac OS X v10.5 "Leopard", including: Full 64-bit app support, Time Machine, Boot Camp, Front Row, and Photo Booth packaged with the OS, Spaces (Virtual Desktops), Spotlight enhancements, Core Animation, Universal Access enhancements, Mail enhancements, Dashboard enhancements, including Dashcode, and iChat enhancements. Leopard was announced to most likely be released for sale in Spring 2007. In addition to Leopard features that were announced, a major revision to the Mac OS X Server product was announced. Some new features in this product included: A simplified set-up process, iCal Server (based on the CalDAV standard), Teams (a set of web-based collaborative services), Spotlight Server, and Podcast Producer. 4200 developers from 48 countries attended the event. There were 140 sessions and 100 hands-on labs for developers. There were over 1000 Apple engineers present at the event. At the beer bash in Cupertino, the DJ "BT" performed. Attendees were taken by bus from Moscone West to the Apple Campus in Cupertino.
WWDC 2007 took place from June 11 to June 15 in Moscone West, San Francisco with the keynote presentation hosted by Steve Jobs. Apple showed off a feature-complete beta of Mac OS X Leopard, though its release date was pushed back to October. Jobs announced that a version of Safari, Apple's proprietary web browser, had been created for Windows, and that a beta release was being made available online that same day. Apple also announced support for third-party development for the then upcoming iPhone via online web applications running in Safari on iPhone. The announcement implied that Apple, at least for the time being, had no plans to release an iPhone SDK, meaning that developers would have to use standard web protocols. Additionally Jobs noted during the keynote that over 5000 attendees were present at WWDC 2007, breaking the previous year's record. For the bash held June 14, the band Ozomatli played at the Yerba Buena Gardens.
WWDC 2008 took place from June 9 to June 13 at Moscone West, San Francisco. Apple reported that, for the first time, the conference had sold out. There were three tracks for developers, iPhone, Mac, and IT. Announcements at the keynote included the App Store for iPhone and iPod Touch, the stable version of the iPhone SDK, a subsidized 3G version of the iPhone for Worldwide markets,[3] version 2.0 of the iOS, Mac OS X v10.6,[4] and the replacement/rebranding of .Mac as MobileMe.[5] For the bash held June 12, the band The Barenaked Ladies played at the Yerba Buena Gardens.
WWDC 2009 took place from June 8 to June 12 at Moscone West, San Francisco, and Apple reported that the 2009 conference sold out in late April. Announcements at the keynote included the release of the iOS 3.0 software announced to developers in March, a demonstration of Mac OS X v10.6, the new 13" MacBook Pro, updates to the 15" and 17" MacBook Pros, and the new iPhone 3GS. Phil Schiller, Apple's SVP for Product Marketing, presented the WWDC keynote this year, instead of the traditional presenter Steve Jobs, Apple's CEO, who had taken medical leave of absence since the beginning of the year.[6] Attendees received a neoprene messenger bag. For the bash held June 11, the band Cake played at the Yerba Buena Gardens.
WWDC 2010 was announced April 28, 2010.[7] WWDC 2010 was held at Moscone West, San Francisco from June 7 to June 11, 2010.[8] Apple reported that the conference was sold out within 8 days of tickets being made available, even though ticket price had risen from $1295 in 2009 to $1599 in 2010. On June 7, 2010, Apple CEO Steve Jobs announced the iPhone 4[9] and the renaming of iPhone OS to iOS. The FaceTime[10] and iMovie apps for iPhone[11] applications were also announced. For the bash held June 10, the band OK Go played at the Yerba Buena Gardens. Attendees received a black track jacket with the letters "WWDC" across the vest and the number "10" stitched on the back.
WWDC 2011 was held at Moscone West, San Francisco from June 6 to June 10, 2011. The event reportedly sold out within 2 hours of the 5,000 tickets being placed on sale on March 28th, 2011.[12] The ticket price also remained the same from the 2010 WWDC, selling at $1,599. At the keynote, Apple unveiled its next generation software - Mac OS X Lion, the eighth major release of Mac OS X; iOS 5, the next version of Apple's advanced mobile operating system which powers the iPad, iPhone and iPod touch; and iCloud, Apple's upcoming cloud services offering. Michael Franti and Spearhead played at the Yerb Buena Bash on June 9th. Attendees received a similar black track jacket to the one the previous year, but with a smaller "WWDC" across the front and the number "11" stitched on the back.


  1. ^ Apple Previews “Jaguar,” the Next Major Release of Mac OS X-Apple Press Info
  2. ^ Apple WWDC 2002-The Death Of Mac OS 9
  3. ^ Swiss iPhone, 3G iPhone on June 9th? – Mac Rumors
  4. ^ Rumor: Mac OS X 10.6 to debut at WWDC 08? – The Unofficial Apple Weblog (TUAW)
  5. ^ MacDailyNews – Apple to rename .Mac and make it free (ad-supported)?
  6. ^ Jobs not to present keynote at Apple’s WWDC - Technology - Technology | Ireland's online business and management news service -
  7. ^ WWDC 2010 Announced: June 7-11-TheAppleBlog
  8. ^ Apple's WWDC site
  9. ^ Diaz, Jesus (June 7, 2010). "iPhone 4: The Definitive Guide". Gizmodo. Retrieved June 7, 2010.
  10. ^ Patel, Nilay (June 7, 2010). "FaceTime video calling added to [[iPhone]] 4... and it's WiFi-only". Engadget. Retrieved June 7, 2010. ((cite web)): URL–wikilink conflict (help)
  11. ^ Schultz, Marianne (June 7, 2010). "Apple Announces iMovie for [[iPhone]] 4". MacRumors. Retrieved June 7, 2010. ((cite web)): URL–wikilink conflict (help)
  12. ^ WWDC 2011 Tickets Go On Sale, Sell Out In Two Hours - Apple