Boy! it is a great time to be alive. Apple held their annual iPhone event at their new campus in Cupertino in the Steve Jobs theater and this has been Apple’s biggest event so far in terms of product launches. It has everything you could dream of as a tech enthusiast. And lucky for you, we’ve got it all here. This is our exclusive coverage of the September 12, Apple event held at the Steve Jobs theater and we’ll get to every nook and cranny of the products announced. Let’s get started.
First up Apple Retail!
Apple Retail is truly Apple’s largest product. The company spends a lot of time and money into crafting the retail experience have at Apple Stores. Since Retail is Apple’s largest product, just like every other thing, they announced a newer updated version of it with new features. It’s now called Apple Town Squares and it’s going to be the next generation of Retail Experience by Apple. The company is going to be opening these across the globe and it’s not just going to be your one stop destination for purchasing Apple products, it will also help you experience Apple.
To do this the company is going to drive the community around the neighborhood and cater to their needs. Apple is taking a new approach to retail with town squares. It will be a cross between a retail outlet and an education center. The Genius Bar will also be redone and it’s now gonna be called the Genius Grove. Apple is putting all of this together with what the company is calling Today At Apple. Today At Apple is the company newest initiative to engage with the community around the town square by organizing fun events like Photo Walks, Teacher Tuesdays, performances by local artists and educative sessions to help people stay up to date with the latest technologies. The company also announced plans of opening a few new stores in the coming year which includes cities like Milan, Washington, Paris and New York.
Next, Apple Watch Series 3
Ever since its inception, Apple Watch has been at the pinnacle of wearable innovation. In less than 2 years of its existence, the Apple Watch has grown to be the number one watch in the world, beating players like Rolex and Rado at their years of expertise at this craft. Today Apple decided to up its wearable fame a step further by announcing a newer and better Apple Watch Series 3. The new Apple Watch now comes with built in LTE support for a truly untethered experience. The access to cellular on your wrist enables you to leave your phone behind while you go on a run or while finishing quick errands.
The new Apple Watch comes with a dual core processor and a new W2 chip to deliver around 85% percent faster LTE and Wi-Fi while being power efficient at the same time. It’s water proof just like the Series 2 and has up to 18 hours of battery life. The small size of the Apple Watch forced the engineers to rethink how to add a cellular connection, on the new Apple Watch the display itself sees as the antenna and features an electronic SIM which will carry the same number as the one on your iPhone. The Series 3 Apple Watch will start at $399 for the cellular version and $329 for the one without it, there’s a ceramic version available as well and it will come in a stealthy gray finish at $1,149. The new Apple Watch Series 3 ships on September 22nd.
Apple TV 4K
Among other speculated products the one which was long overdue for an upgrade was Apple TV. Apple TV is Apple’s version of a set top box powered by Siri smarts. The company announced a new version of Apple TV which is now capable of playing movies and TV shows at 4K Ultra HD with HDR support. CEO Tim Cook says that the TV has reached an inflection point with 4K becoming a mainstream adoption. The new Apple TV will push Apple on the same grounds as other providers like Google’s Chromecast, the Roku, and Amazon with its Fire stick.
The new Apple TV will support Dolby Vision and HDR10 which will allow for brighter highlights. On the software front, it flaunts a new user interface optimised for 4K. When the device is ideal it’s going to play screensavers which can be pictures from your iOS device’s camera roll. The remote has also been enhanced and redone. What’s interesting is that if you purchased an HD movie from iTunes, it will be automatically upgraded to 4K HDR without any extra cost. On the internals, the Apple TV comes with the A10X Fusion chip and 3 gigs of RAM. The new Apple TV retails at $179 for 32 GB and $199 for 64 GB and will be available starting September 22nd
Next up, the iPhone 8!
This one has been months in leaks. It’s finally we have it in the flesh (or metal and glass to be exact). The phone we’ve eagerly waited for is finally out. iPhones are the most hyped tech product every year and it blows over every other device announcement ever made. Apple builds up the hype months in advance and on the day of the announcement, it makes sure the internet explodes. They did it again with the iPhone 8. The iPhone 8 is an update to last year’s iPhone 7 it’s basically a 7S in every way but the name. The new iPhone 8 and the bigger iPhone 8 Plus come with a glass and metal design with glass on both the front and back of the phone. For the first time in the history of iPhones, Apple has included wireless charging on the iPhone 8 which was long overdue. It comes with microscopic water proofing and a better camera system.
The lenses now support deeper pixels to allows more light in so that the pictures taken in low light are less noisy. On the larger iPhone 8 Plus, the dual camera setup now supports optical image stabilization on both lenses. Which means your videos will be even smoother. The new iPhones have support for 60fps 4K video recording and the iPhone 8 Plus get a new effect for justifying the purchase. The dual lens system in a relay with the ISP can now recreate studio grade lighting effects which the company is now calling the Portrait Lighting mode. The iPhone 8 and the iPhone 8 Plus are powered by the new A11 Bionic chip (sounds cool doesn’t it?) and are the first iPhones designed and fine tuned for true AR experiences. The new phones will be available is 64 GB and 128 GB and will retail at $699 for the standard model and $799 for the plus model. Both will start shipping on September 22nd.
And Finally, We have the Star of the Show the iPhone X
After numerous leaks, countless speculations and a lot of controversies, we finally saw live. The original iPhone started a new generation of computing around it and inspired a decade of evolution of technology. It was only wise for Apple to set a gold standard as an inspiration for the next 10 years of innovative and they did just that with the iPhone X. The iPhone X is the 10-year anniversary edition of the original iPhone and it packs is some serious bells and whistles to set the industry on fire. First up is the screen. The screen on the iPhone X is an OLED display which is a first for any iPhone and Apple is calling this the Super Retina Display. It’s 5.8 inches diagonal coming in with a resolution of 1125×2436 but it fits just perfectly in the palm of your hand. It’s a larger display than the iPhone 8 Plus in a much smaller form factor. The OLED panel used on the iPhone X will truly allow users to experience contrast levels like never before.
The screen wraps around the front of the phone with only a small array of sensors on the top. It’s the TrueDepth camera system which facilitates the new form of authentication on the iPhone X, Face ID. Face ID will allow you to unlock your iPhone by just looking at it. It will work even in dark conditions and Apple claims it’s more secure than your fingerprint used on Touch ID. Face ID is powered by machine learning which is implemented by the neural engine inside the iPhone X and it is fool proof and hence you can now use it for making payments via Apple Pay as well. It has all the great features supported by the iPhone 8 like wireless Qi charging water proofing and more, the Portrait Lighting mode is available on the iPhone X as well but what’s interesting is that it’s available now from the front facing camera as well.
The TrueDepth camera system also allows for some pretty great applications which Apple showcased on stage like Animoji, which is animated emoji to truly allow you to harness such a sophisticated technology to waste your time ( but it’s actually pretty fun). Apple also showcased how Snapchat has used the new TrueDepth camera system to build some really cool new filters. The new iPhone has 3D touch enabled on it as well. On the internals, it is being powered by the same A11 Bionic Chip that Apple is using on the iPhone 8 and is accompanied by 3 GB of RAM. Due to the all new design and form factor though, there’s no longer a home button so you essentially use gestures to interact with the device. A simple swipe up would take you home and a swipe up and hold will bring in multi tasking. Control Center can now be invoked from the top much like on any Android device and to switch between apps you just swipe on the bottom bar. The power button is now comparatively bigger on the iPhone X and that is for good reason because you now use the power button to invoke Siri and Apple Pay. Despite all of these incredible new features, Apple is claiming that the iPhone X will not take a hit on battery life at all. In fact, it is going to provide 2 hours more of usage compared to the iPhone 7. All in all the new iPhone is shaping up to be the most innovative piece of tech released this year. It will start at $999 and will start shipping in November.
Apple truly stunned the crowd with the new iPhone X announcement. It is way ahead of anything available on the market and is bound to push the industry forward. However, a $999 price tag for a smartphone is something which is going to be put to debate a lot because the fact that good phones are getting cheap and cheap phones are getting good. And Apple by no means is setting foot in the budget territory especially after the failure it saw with the iPhone 5C. Until next time, this is Prateek signing off!