WWDC 2024 Highlights: Key Takeaways for IT Admins and Security Professionals

At WWDC 2024, Apple unveiled a suite of updates across its platforms. This year, Apple re-iterated its focus on privacy, user experience and seamless integration within its ecosystem. Apple also introduced Apple Intelligence, which will deliver major enhancements across all platforms.

June 13 2024 by

Sean Smith

During this year’s keynote speech, Apple took the stage to discuss the advancements that so many now eagerly expect throughout 2024.

Among the announcements made covering macOS, iOS, iPadOS, watchOS, tvOS and visionOS, the major overhaul of Siri, leveraging system-wide Apple Intelligence and machine learning (ML) is by far and wide the most impactful update — and arguably the one to have the greatest ripple effect on enterprise and user security — in the near and distant future.

In this blog, we examine some of the latest and greatest technology innovations announced during WWDC 2024 and what it means for the enterprise.

It’s always been privacy first

A cornerstone of Apple’s design philosophy, privacy and security are engrained in the design of each device, application and service developed. Because of the cruciality of privacy and security, coupled with a constantly evolving threat landscape, Apple’s flagship operating systems for desktop and mobile devices receive updates that improve security without compromising privacy.

Lock an app

This is an exciting feature for iOS 18 that prevents launching a protected app unless the user authenticates with biometrics or a passcode. Furthermore, data contained within protected apps does not appear in other areas of the system for added peace of mind, such as:

  • Search
  • Notifications
  • Spotlight
  • Siri
  • Call history
  • Maps

Mobile devices are used across the enterprise for countless use cases. From employees using iPhone as their BYO device(which includes work and personal information), or to check-in passengers, or as a shared device in retail, data on an iPhone is sensitive, personal or both. By providing a built-in mechanism to lock an app, Apple is giving organizations and users a powerful new privacy control.

Increased privacy protections

Taking privacy protection a step further beyond what types of data apps can use, Apple implements granularity that allows users to allow or restrict specific information within approved data types. For example, allowing apps to utilize contacts is one thing. All contacts are allowed by default under that setting. But explicitly restricting certain contacts from being used by apps adds a layer of security that ensures protected contacts remain safeguarded. This also includes hardware devices paired via Bluetooth, ensuring a streamlined way to pair equipment while keeping these connections private and secure.

Passwords app

Apple has long offered a mature password management solution as an alternative to third-party applications that leverages iCloud sync and native platform security. With this updated, Apple introduced a dedicated Passwords app that provides a centralized and secure location for managing passwords across your Apple ecosystem and offers cross-platform availability for Windows computers. This will make it easier for people to discover and use a secure password manager that’s integrated into the Apple platform experience. This not only ensures the secure management of credentials, passkeys and Wi-Fi networks but facilitates seamless password management across all devices — regardless of platform.

AI means Apple Intelligence

Apple Intelligence

Introduced to the world as “AI for the rest of us,” Apple Intelligence debuts in iOS 18, iPadOS 18 and macOS Sequoia, supporting devices that run on the A17 Pro and M-series processors respectively.

Designed with privacy in mind, Apple Intelligence offers users a personalized intelligence system integrated across the entire iOS and macOS experience that leverages generative models to create language (text) and images while taking actions with a deep understanding of your unique context.

But that’s not all it does; it is also capable of prioritizing notifications and summarizing content using system-wide access to your data — to better understand you and how you work. Apple showed they have taken a long, thoughtful approach to integrating these new technologies across every aspect of the user experience. From grouping mail messages to prioritizing notifications, summarizing content or proof reading text, Apple Intelligence is truly a comprehensive view into how “AI for the rest of us” can make our lives better, our work more productive, and our devices more enjoyable.

Generative Models

Create language and images, and take actions with a deep understanding of your personal context, customizing its Large-Language Models (LLM) to meet your unique needs. System-wide integration means that Apple Intelligence is there to always assist users. Apple Intelligence is powered by Apple, but it can also use OpenAI’s ChatGPT-4o for some of the built-in Writing Tools to help you with suggestions and summaries, or correcting text, and are available in first- and third-party applications.

The majority of data processed using Apple Intelligence, according to Apple, occurs on-device. During instances for more complex requests, these are processed using Apple’s Private Cloud Compute (more on this later). These capabilities are incredibly powerful and will benefit users, but protecting sensitive or confidential data when information is written make device security more important that ever. Apple has committed to not storing or training on user submissions, which is an important step towards protecting user and company data. Regardless, every organization will need to evaluate their overall data handling policy in light of continued AI innovation to ensure they strike the right balance

Generating artwork is also built-in, working with your existing images or independently to create unique images. Apple is offering a curated experience that makes this kind off generative AI approachable for everyone, such as simple prompts and a selection of non-realistic styles to minimize the risks that are often associated with AI-generated images. While these generative image capabilities are powerful and exciting, organizations may need to keep in mind legal and compliance issues related to potential copyright infringement or other regulatory violations before using any of the content created in this fashion.

Private Cloud Compute

Specialized processing that requires advanced AI functionalities that cannot be processed on-device are sent to Apple’s Private Cloud Compute, which handles more complex requests for you while protecting your privacy. Apple explains that while Apple Intelligence is aware of your personal information:

  • Your data is never stored on Apple servers
  • Only the parts of your request that require LLM processing are sent to the cloud
  • And the Apple Silicon-based server code is available for independent auditing and verification.

Furthering their stance on the extensive privacy and security controls of Apple Intelligence, Apple devices are cryptographically prevented from talking to a Private Cloud Compute server unless its software has been “publicly logged for inspection,” as per Apple.

In the age of cloud computing, let’s not forget that one of the biggest concerns regarding security in the cloud was (and in some regulated industries still is) the lack of control over an organization’s data once it resides outside of on-premises storage solutions. There’s no doubt Apple has the means and engineering capability to develop some of the most secure hardware, software and services used safely by hundreds of millions of users worldwide.


Apple’s virtual assistant gets a powerful upgrade from Apple Intelligence, allowing unprecedented processing of complex requests. With system-wide reach and access to on-device data, it leverages LLMs to better understand the natural language spoken by users and gains conversational context awareness, so information from one request can be repurposed for future requests.

By leveraging Apple Intelligence, Siri can not only identify information within data types but can also extract it to be used to fulfill other requests. For example, finding a picture of a driver’s license and extracting details, like address and DOB, using them to save time when filling out forms.

Another value-added benefit is the Text to Siri feature, which curbs the requirement to speak requests for greater security involving sensitive tasks.

Seamless integration

Siri can weave in and out of apps to process tasks, make changes and share data from the source to the destination for ease of multi-tasking.

App Intents

Allows developers the ability to leverage Apple Intelligence across Apple and 3rd-party apps to develop deeper, richer productivity workflows.

Each feature discussed has tremendous potential, rivaling the inception of Siri over a decade ago. Ease of use, increased flexibility and the ability to do more in less time is a proper godsend for businesses facing employee shortages or trying to close skills gaps by leveraging technology to drive business continuity. Once again donning our security hat, like any tool, the determination of whether it’s used for good or not lies with the intent of how it’s used.

System-wide integration

Apple Intelligence has access to many data points across your device, called a Semantic Index. From calendar entries to notes taken to task reminders and business emails — each data type and point is threaded together as part of this index to enable easier correlations between data sets, ultimately helping users to working smarter, not harder.

Enhancing user interactions

Along with privacy and security, user experience is part of the heart of Apple’s design philosophy. Apple announced a variety of new features and functionalities to improve how users interact with the devices they use – including using them together.

iPhone Mirroring

Part of Continuity, a series of Apple features that allow users to work seamlessly from one device to another with nary a drop in productivity, comes the ability to see and control your iPhone remotely using a Mac — even if the iPhone is locked and stored away from your Mac.

Through seamless integration, users are able to connect to and remote control their iPhones:

  • Access and use apps on your iPhone from your Mac
  • Notifications from your iPhone are redirected and displayed on your Mac
  • Share data between Mac and iPhone easily with drag-and-drop support
  • Interface with your iPhone just like if you were physically holding it


As cloud-based computing continues its growth trend in the enterprise, the browser gains greater prominence as not just an app to surf the web but the gateway to just about anything we need to stay productive. Because of this, Safari continues to focus on speed, privacy and the user experience.


As users perform searches in Safari, Highlights draws from machine learning to detect correlating content, presenting it to the user, thereby enhancing their browsing experience.

Similar to the earlier section on Apple Intelligence and its ability to pull together disparate data points based on a request, the ability of Highlights to do the same for web searches may present challenges for certain industries that require tight control over information flow, especially involving internet-facing resources. From a privacy standpoint, this may also highlight a crucial need for browser management and content-filtering solutions to limit the types of data presented to users.

Speech transcription

In Notes, recording audio of meetings while also performing on-the-fly transcribing of the meeting to text and creating a summary makes it a breeze to obtain high-level points for reference. Transcription is also extended to the Phone app to simplify recording and transcribing in real time. A visual alert notifies participants when a call is being recorded using this feature.

This handy feature facilitates sharing summaries and audio recordings of important phone calls with privileged team members who are unable to join the call.

SharePlay enhancements

Taking the concept of sharing your iPad screen a step further, you can now request control of a user’s iPad remotely when collaborating or requesting assistance from a colleague or member of the IT department.

Transportation modes

Marketed as a mobile device, Apple Vision Pro is a self-contained computing device in its own right, capable of offering users the ability to work from anywhere, while security features like the built-in screen keep business data safe from prying eyes. New transportation mode is introduced to aid users in getting the most productivity out of their commutes.

Virtual display enhancements

Speaking of the internal display, when used alongside Mac, visionOS 2 adds upgraded screen real estate and support for ultra-wide screens to maximize the viewing space to allow for more data, more applications and more of everything you need to get work done. This includes displaying immersive/spatial videos across a screen so large that it equals a 180-degree viewable space.

New APIs and Frameworks

Marking the second anniversary of Apple Vision Pro, it’s receiving an upgrade in visionOS 2. With a growing app library, developers gain the power to tap into new features through Volumetric and Enterprise APIs. Also announced, the Tabletop Kit provides the tools necessary to develop integrations with objects to extend Apple Vision Pro’s capabilities to devices users interact with daily.

Considerations for enterprises: Managing and securing apple devices at work

The announcements at WWDC 2024 bring a host of opportunities and new areas for consideration for enterprises using Apple devices. While users often welcome new features and are quick to embrace updates on personal devices, organizations worried about the impact on their security posture will turn to their management and security tools to mitigate the potential impact on privacy and security these updates may have.

Some key considerations for enterprise security are:

  • Keeping patches up to date: New versions of OS’s not only include new features but often roll up critical security patches that remediate vulnerabilities that mitigate threats.
  • Enhanced security features: New security features are developed to keep defensive capabilities in lock-step with the modern threat landscape. Incorporating them into your security stack means devices, users and data can benefit from these protections sooner.
  • Improved device management: iPhone Mirroring in macOS Sequoia streamline IT support workflows by quicklytroubleshooting devices remotely.
  • Seamless integration: The revamped Siri offers personalized, context-aware interactions, making it easier for employees to manage tasks and stay productive.
  • AI at your side: Apple Intelligence is the future. Business continuity and employee productivity will no doubtbenefit by integrating AI-driven features into their daily operations, processes and workflows.

Key actions for IT and Security teams

Given the business use considerations, IT and Security teams should take proactive steps to maximize the benefits of the new updates while mitigating potential risks that may impact device, user and data security.

  • Always test new security features: Beta versions of macOS, iOS, iPadOS, visionOS and watchOS are all available right now for organizations to begin testing feature compatibility within their unique environment. This helps organizations determine which features they will (and won’t) support in preparing for update deployments later in the year. By participating in Appleseed for IT, IT admins can get test plans for their devices.
  • Review and update security policies: With the introduction of features like App Lock, it is essential to review and update security policies to ensure that new capabilities align with compliance requirements unique to your organization, providing optimal protection of device security, user privacy and company data.
  • Evaluate AI integration: Assess the potential benefits, risks and challenges of integrating Apple Intelligence andenhanced Siri into your enterprise environment. Consider privacy and security implications to proactively develop strategies to manage AI-driven interactions if the risks do not align with your security tolerance.
  • Leverage management and security solutions: MDM and Endpoint Security tools are the foundational core of managing and securing devices, users and data. Use them to implement a defense-in-depth strategy to maintain compliance across your enterprise while upholding user privacy.
  • Streamline inventory processes: Ensuring devices are assigned to authorized users and tracked by inventory within MDM maximizes device accountability and allows organizations to keep sensitive data out of unauthorized users’ hands by enabling remote locking or wiping of lost/stolen devices.
  • Implement user training: Explore how productivity-enhancing features can be utilized to improve workflows in remote and hybrid work settings to establish programs that train employees on how to make the most of these new tools and the criticality of ensuring security.

Jamf remains dedicated to supporting enterprises in navigating these updates, ensuring that Apple devices remain performant, secure and seamlessly integrated into the workplace. As Apple continues to innovate, Jamf provides the tools and expertise necessary to harness these advancements, optimizing the benefit to businesses globally.

Did you miss day one of WWDC? Get the full recap in our latest blog.