Apple unveils iPhone 6S, iPad Pro and more

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Yesterday night/this morning was a big day if you consider yourself an Apple fan. After months of anxious waiting filled with rumours and leaks, Apple held it’s annual iPhone announcement. Finally, Apple revealed the latest and greatest gadgets that would walk out of Cupertino alongside the iPhone and into your hands.

However, following the entire event live could have been tough for some of you. We at ReadMe understand the importance of sleep. Which is why we sacrificed ours to bring you this compilation of what Apple launched at it’s iPhone reveal event. 

The iPhone 6S

Let’s start off with the star of the show. Despite pleas from marketing agencies, Apple has officially announced the Phone 6S and the 6S Plus. It’s tough to say when it would hit Sri Lankan shores but globally, expect launch on the 25th of September.

So what updates has Apple installed in the new iPhone? 

Better cameras

Since 2012, iPhones have had 8MP cameras. That all changed today, when Apple announced that the iPhone 6S will come with an all new 12MP camera. This new camera will help you take pictures in higher resolutions with better autofocus alongside improved pixels for better color and quality. Oh and it also shoots videos in 4K. Yup 4K.

Photo credits: TheVerge
Photo credits: TheVerge

Of course, Apple hasn’t forgotten about the faithful selfie front camera. The iPhone 6S will also ship with an upgraded 5MP front camera. To help you take a selfie in the dark, the iPhone 6S comes with a feature called Retina Flash. Retina Flash makes the iPhone 6S display 3 times brighter, to act as a makeshift flash for the front camera. A simple solution for taking selfies in the dark, though one has to wonder how we’ll click that camera button with a display that bright.

That’s the hardware updates for the camera. In terms of software, Apple has introduced a new feature called Live Photos. This pairs your pictures with a short video. Creating one is simple since the feature is always on. How helpful this will be remains to be seen.

A better processor

The new A9 processor that comes with the iPhone 6S is 70% faster than the previous A8 processors. This means you get power to run more and graphics in games will look a lot better.

Photo credits: TheVerge
Photo credits: TheVerge

New gestures

Over the past few months, it has been rumored that Apple would include something called 3D Touch in their latest phones. Today, that theory was confirmed. The iPhone 6S will indeed come with 3D Touch. In case you’re lost, 3D Touch is where you can interact with your phone in newer ways depending on exactly how much pressure you put on a button.

Apple also introduced 2 new gestures with the iPhone 6S: Peek and Pop. These gestures apply to home screen icons with Peek as the name suggests, giving you a preview of the information. Pop on the other hand, presents a contextual menu of features you regularly use with the app.

It looks designers and developers have a new tool to play with.

The new iPad Pro

While the iPhone got a few updates, it’s elder brother seems to have gotten an overhaul. Once again, there were rumours and speculation for months. Today, Apple officially silenced them all with the official announcement of the iPad Pro.

So what will the iPad Pro bring to the table when it’s released in November?

It’s bigger and thinner

The new iPad Pro will ship with a larger 12.9-inch Retina display. It incorporates the same technology Apple uses in it’s iMac Retina 5K displays to bring pixels to life. It’s a display that’s bigger, prettier and supposedly consumes less battery as well. The iPad Pro has a variable refresh rate, which means it can slow down the display at times to save battery.

Despite the larger screen, the iPad Pro is only 6.9mm thick and weights at 1.57 pounds. Then again, if it wasn’t bigger and lighter, it wouldn’t be an Apple device.

More power and battery life

Delve deep into the heart of the iPad Pro and you will find Apple’s new A9X processor. It’s CPU s 22 times faster than previous iPad models and 360 times faster than them when it comes to rendering graphics. In other words, you can run a LOT more apps and graphics will look significantly better.

Photo credits: Engadet
Photo credits: Engadet

It’s also easier on your battery. According to Apple, you can edit three 4K videos and still see your a battery last 10 hours. More power AND a longer battery life? That’s a bold claim, but impressive if true.

A physical keyboard

Photo credits: Engadget
Photo credits: Engadget

If you have $169 laying around after buying an iPad Pro, then Apple has an accessory for you: the iPad Pro’s keyboard cover. It’s made from cloth and connects to the iPad Pro via a new connector known as the Smart Connector. Yes, it is very similar to the covers Microsoft has for it’s Surface tablets.

The Apple Pencil

Steve Jobs once said, “Who wants a stylus? You have to get ’em, put ’em away, you lose ’em. Yuch! Nobody wants a stylus. So let’s not use a stylus.” This was when he was introducing the original iPhone back in 2007. Fast forward to 2015 and this happened. 

The iPad Pro has an optional $99 stylus called the Apple Pencil. Yes, Apple has actually made a stylus. Thanks to pressure sensors, thin strokes can be made when pressing lightly onto the screen and heavier strokes are the result of more pressure.

However before using it, you need to make sure it’s charged. On a full charge, Apple claims you can use the stylus for 12 hours. If you’re in a rush, plug the Apple Pencil into the iPad Pro’s lightning connector. Within 15 seconds you’ll have enough battery to use the Apple Pencil for 30 minutes.

According to Apple, it’s own apps will be getting updates to support the Apple Pencil. This also includes 3rd party iOS apps from the likes of Microsoft and Adobe. Both of whom, were on stage and demonstrated the new features the Apple Pencil bring to their apps.

The Apple stylus is without a doubt, gorgeous. However, with the $99 price tag is a steep barrier considering the price of the iPad Pro itself. That’s without discounting the bugs that will inevitably pop up in the first year.

The new Apple TV

“We believe the future of television is apps”, said Tim Cook as he took the stage. Content wasn’t the focus of the new Apple TV. No it was apps and it’s getting a lot of them. It’s taking a jab at Google’s Android TV with a few hardware upgrades as well. Releasing in October, the new Apple TV will be $149 for 32GB and $199 for 64GB.

Siri

With the new Apple TV, Siri aims to make your binge time more entertaining. Primarily, Siri is all about helping you find content. From the demos we saw, it’s very good at it too.

You could ask specific questions like, “Marvel movies with Chris Evans” or general questions like, “What’s a good sci-fi movie?” Siri will give you a recommendations. According to the demos at least, we’ve yet to see Siri actually recommending content to us that we love.

You can also ask Siri, “what did he just say?” and it’ll rewind back to 15 seconds ago. Siri can also keep you updated on the weather and sports scores as you watch TV. There’s plenty of weather apps but keep tracking of scores? Now that’s handy. It’s always the little things that make Apple products impressive.

A new remote

The new Apple TV ships with a new remote. The old circular button to navigate menu’s is gone. It’s replaced with a touch screen which will be the main input. It also has more buttons. The previous one had 3, whereas the newer model has 6.

Photo credits: TheVerge
Photo credits: TheVerge

 

It also comes with an accelerometer and a gyroscope. Which means, you can turn it landscape and you can use it to play games on the Apple TV. Yet, the best thing about this new remote is that it uses Bluetooth 4.0, not infrared. So no longer will you need to have a clear line of sight with the TV to use it.

Apps and games

The new Apple TV ships with a new OS dubbed tvOS, which is based on iOS. The entire UI has been revamped with focus being on content rather than channels. Along with the basic UI, all other apps you’ve known to be on Apple TV have been redesigned as well.

tvOS also brings an app store to Apple TV. This app store will have a variety of apps in various categories. However, the star of today’s show was games. From Disney Infinity to Guitar Hero to Transistor, the new Apple TV has a strong line of casual games. The same games which see millions of downloads on iOS. With tvOS, the new Apple TV also brings multiplayer support to play with friends who are on their iPods, iPads or iPhones.

The new Apple TV fits in with the rest of it’s ecosystem. However, one has to wonder whether apps on tv will actually be intuitive or just plain cumbersome. That’s something only time will tell.

The Apple Watch

Last but not least, it’s the Apple Watch. Unlike everything else, the Apple Watch only had a few modest announcements. The first was a major update for Apple Watches dubbed watchOS 2, would be available from September 16th. With the watchOS 2 update, the Apple Watch gets a bunch of new features such as: improved performance, native 3rd party apps and improved support for 3rd party watch faces.

Apple Watch Hermès Collection. Photo credits: TheVerge
Apple Watch Hermès Collection. Photo credits: TheVerge

 

The second announcement was Apple’s partnership with Hermès. The result of this partnership is a new Apple Watch collection, dubbed the Apple Watch Hermès. Each watch in the line, comes with a custom face and a choice of three leather bands: the Single Tour, the Double Tour, and the Cuff. The Apple Watch Hermès will set you back $1,100 when it’s released on the 5th of October.

The third announcement was new watch bands. Apple in partnership with Bono’s HIV / AIDS charity Product Red, unveiled a set new watch bands in different colors. The last announcement for the Apple Watch is that the Apple Watch Sport is now available in gold and rose finishes.

What do you think?

That’s everything that Apple announced today at it’s mega reveal event. Are you excited for these new products from Apple or do you think they aren’t worth your money ? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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