Apple, as expected, has revealed a range of new handsets – including the highly anticipated iPhone X – a new Apple Watch, and Apple TV 4K.
The big news out of Apple’s first event at the Steve Jobs theatre is, of course, the unveiling of the latest iPhone and the company’s 10th anniversary model, in the form of the iPhone X.
X marks the spot
The iPhone X, which has been dubbed ‘the future of the smartphone by Apple, features an all-glass design with an all-screen 5.8-inch Super Retina display, a HDR display which supports Dolby Vision and HDR10. iOS 11 on the device replaces the Home button, enabling users to navigate using gestures (i.e. swiping up from the bottom to go home from anywhere). The phone is also water and dust resistant, and capable of wireless charging.
In addition, the iPhone X introduces Face ID, which enables the owner to unlock the iPhone using facial recognition, as well as being able to use it to enable Apple Pay, gain access to secure apps, and more. This feature is accessed through the seven-megapixel TrueDepth camera on the front of the device, while the rear get a dual 12-megapixel camera with dual optical image stabilisation. Each camera has been individually calibrated with new gyroscopes and accelerometers to provide an enhanced AR experience. Moreover, the rear camera is also capable of capturing 4K video up to 60fps and 1080p slo-mo to 240fps.
“For more than a decade, our intention has been to create an iPhone that is all display. The iPhone X is the realisation of that vision,” said Jony Ive, chief design officer at Apple. “With the introduction of iPhone ten years ago, we revolutionised the mobile phone with Multi-Touch. iPhone X marks a new era for iPhone — one in which the device disappears into the experience.”
Perhaps the biggest feature that comes along with the iPhone X is the ability to animate emojis using the TrueDepth camera. Yes, that’s right, emojis can now mimic your expressions. With Animoji, the camera – with the help of the phone’s A11 Bionic chip – analyses over 50 different facial muscle movements, then animates the expressions in a dozen different Animoji. This feature is available as a preinstalled iMessage app, where iPhone X owners can record and send Animoji messages with their voice.
The iPhone X will be available to order from 27 October, before being made available from 3 November globally. It will come in silver and space grey in 64GB and 256GB models that start at $999.
Hey, I’m here too
Of course, the iPhone X was also accompanied by the actual latest edition of the iPhone: the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus.
The iPhone 8 looks more like the traditional iPhone that we all know so well. It features a glass and aluminium design, with Retina HD displays and A11 Bionic chip like the iPhone X. The iPhone 8 has a 4.7-inch display, while the 8 Plus has a 5.5-inch display.
Also like the iPhone X, the iPhone 8 has been designed with AR in mind and comes with iOS 11, while getting a dual 12-megapixel rear camera as well. In addition, it’s water and dust resistant, and capable of wireless charging.
“iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus are a new generation of iPhone that improve on everything we love about iPhone,” said Philip Schiller, SVP of worldwide marketing at Apple. “iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus have new glass and aluminium designs, new Retina HD displays and A11 Bionic — the smartest chip ever in a smartphone. Packed with more advanced cameras with Portrait mode and Portrait Lighting, and the highest quality video capture in a smartphone, iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus enable the freedom of wireless charging, all with AR optimisation like no phone ever before.”
The iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus will be available to order from this Friday (15 September), before being made available in half the world on 22 September, and the other half on 29 September. It will come in space grey, silver and gold in 64GB and 256GB models starting at $699.
Elsewhere, as reported last month, the Apple Watch Series 3 comes with built-in cellular connection, so it can be used without the need to carry an iPhone.
The latest generation of the Watch features coaching features, water resistance up to 50 metres and a barometric altimeter for relative elevation. It will be available in two models: one with GPS and cellular, and one with just GPS. It will also come in two different cases sizes of either 38mm or 42mm.
The GPS and cellular model features full LTE and UMTS cellular radio, and it shares the same number as the iPhone that the owner has. The Watch is capable of making calls directly, and can be pair with AirPods. Furthermore, a built-in speaker enables Siri to speak from the owner’s wrist. Eventually, owners of the Watch will be able to connect to Apple music and stream songs from their wrists also.
The watchOS 4 features an updated Heart Rate app, providing more insights into resting, workout, recovery, walking and breathe sessions. Customers can choose to receive a notification when their heart rate is elevated above a specific threshold while inactive.
The Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) will be available in 10 countries and territories from 22 September, with ordering beginning on 15 September. It will come in gold, silver or space grey aluminium, or silver or space black stainless steel, and will start at $399. Meanwhile, the Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS) will begin ordering and availability on the same days but roll out to 28 countries and territories. It arrives in gold, silver or space grey aluminium, and starts at $329.
The final big product news was the unveiling of the Apple TV 4K, which includes support for both 4K and High Dynamic Range (HDR).
The new Apple TV enables viewers to watch the selection of 4K HDR movies on iTunes in their full capability. Furthermore, iTunes users will get automatic upgrades of HD titles in their library to 4K HDR versions when they become available. Apple says it will also soon offer HDR content from services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.
Apple TV 4K is built on the A10X Fusion chip – the same chip that powers the iPad Pro. It features support for Dolby Vision and HDR10, always outputs the highest resolution possible, and automatically optimises setup for best quality picture.
The Apple TV 4K starts at $179 for 32GB or $199 for 64GB, while ordering will begin this Friday (15 September) with availability beginning 22 September.