2007 was an important year for a lot of reasons but one will probably stand out in the history books – Apple’s launch of the iPhone. It didn’t seem like something world changing at the time – it wasn’t the first smart phone and didn’t have the much inherently new technology but it and its successors changed the world. Computers have gone in ten years from something that sits on desks and that very few people actually use to a ubiquitous device that most people have in their pockets and even the least wealthy in society can afford.
Along the way Apple has gone from being the trail blazer to first among several equals. Their 10 year anniversary has slowly come to be regarded as a crucial point. They’re going to remain hugely profitable and admired but can the get the buzz back? There have been rumours floating around about the new iPhone for a long time and many leaks but the whole picture hasn’t been clear. Has Apple under Tim Cook still got the buzz?
Maybe. The show took us through everything we expected including a new iPhone and AppleTV but the star was the Apple iPhone X – pronounced ten. It’s not the new iPhone but instead something out of the normal timetable. 5.8 inches with edge to edge glass, so no home button means lots of gestures. To unlock it Apple have implemented facial recognition – FacialID. The rumours say Apple wanted to get a fingerprint sensor as part of the screen but they weren’t able to. They took the problem and used it to let you use the facial recognition in chat – emoticons and masks based on your face and expressions anyone? The camera on the back is the same as the regular iPhone 8 but the selfie camera is just as good as the 8 – ideal for selfie cameras. All in all the iPhone X looks amazing but at a thousand dollars for the lowest end version, it’s not for most of us.
So if you’re not in the market for an X what else did you get?
The current Apple watch has been tweaked with better health options. It’s now showing more heart rate details and notifications. It will watch for dangerous symptoms like afibrillation and notify you if it sees something unexpected. It’ll be a free update from September 19th. There’s new hardware as well – the Series 3 will have a built in LTE modem and can operate independently from the iPhone. It’ll have the same number as your phone and can do a great proportion of the things your phone can do – including making phone calls. It’ll be available September 22 on EE in the UK.
AppleTV has a new version – 4k with HDR10 and DolbyVision. It’s got a much faster CPU and will launch in the UK later this month.
Finally, they got to the big deal for most people – the iPhone 8 and the iPhone 8 Plus. It’s now glass on both sides and water resistant. The screens are 4.7 and 5.5 and internally it’s got more powerful CPU than ever – the Bionic. The camera is 12MP with OIS. The Plus has two lenses – f/1.9 and f/2.8 and Apple showed off the effects that you use them for including taking two pictures and having the background automatically removed. All that power is also useable for AR and they showed of it being used to play games, for stats at a basketball game and as a sky guide. The iPhone will finally allow wireless charging and for once it’s a standard – Qi. It’s going to be available in 64GB to 256GB starting at $699 on the 22nd September.
I think if you’re an Apple fan then you’ll be happy with what they announced today but there was nothing that I’ve not seen before in other phones. It’s well implemented and keeps Apple as one of the best phone manufacturer’s but no longer the most innovative.