“It’s been an incredible year for Apple”, said Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, at the beginning of the company’s keynote yesterday.
And what a keynote it was. During this fast-paced event, packed with information, the Cupertino giant talked about the Apple Watch and iOS 9, took the wraps off the Apple TV, and, of course, unveiled the latest additions to its iPhone and iPad families. The iPhone 6s, the iPhone 6s Plus, the iPad Pro, and the iPad mini 4 are the talk of the town right now, so let’s see what’s so interesting about these brand new Apple devices.
The Shiny Duo: The iPhone 6s and the iPhone 6s Plus
The moment you lay your eyes on the iPhone 6s and the iPhone 6s Plus, you’ll notice that there is something awfully familiar about the two devices. Seconds later, it will come to you – the design is the same as the one their predecessors sport! That’s right, Apple used the same sleek look of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus for its new handsets, but before you start judging them how they didn’t try to spice things up a bit at all, we should mention that the phones are using a new aluminium – Apple’s own custom alloy. There’s also the fact that the phones will be available in, not three, but four colors this time around – Gold, Silver, Space Grey, and Rose Gold. So, there are design changes – they might be small, but they are there.
A Better Display with 3D Touch in Tow
Moving on to iPhone 6s and 6s Plus displays. Both phones retain the 4.7” and 5.5” screens, respectively, but they are now covered with an Ion-strengthened glass which was also used for the Apple Watch Sport. While that’s all fine and dandy, the real star of the yesterday’s show was definitely the new 3D touch technology we’ve been hearing about for months. Namely, the displays of the latest iPhones are now pressure-sensitive, meaning that you get to perform different tasks on your handset depending on how much pressure you apply to its screen. You can swipe, tap, and slide on your iPhone 6s or 6s Plus to your heart’s content, but what you can also do, thanks to 3D touch, is “peek” and “pop”. This means that, for example, you can have a simple glance at a message when you don’t have enough time to read it (just press on your screen lightly – peek) and then, once you do have the time, you can open the Message app to read everything through (you apply more pressure – pop).
Both Front and Back iPhone 6s and 6s Plus Cameras Get a Makeover
We will remember the Keynote from September 9 for years to come. Why? Because it’s the first time Apple has bumped up its camera’s megapixel count since the iPhone 4S back in 2011. The new 12-megapixel iSight camera shoots photos with a resolution of 4608 x 2592 pixels and, for the first time in Apple’s history (a lot of firsts here), 4K videos. Apple also said that the rear camera would boast improved autofocus, but what makes things really interesting is the new Live Photos feature which allows you record a short video clip with every photo that you capture (turned on by default, captures a second and a half before and after each photo).
The front camera also got an upgrade – there is now a 5-megapixel shooter intended for selfies above the phone’s display and it’s got is own flash, too. Technically, it’s not a real flash – the phone’s display becomes really bright in the moment of taking a photo.
Both iPhones are powered by Apple’s new A9 chipsets, which the company promises will offer a faster performance, boast three storage options (16/64/128GB), and should arrive with faster Wi-Fi and LTE speeds. The handsets will become available to the public on September 25.
The Larger-than-Life iPad Pro and the 4th Generation iPad Mini
Aside from the iPhone 6s duo, Apple also revealed the next tablets in its iPad lineup, called the iPad Pro and the iPad mini 4, respectively. While the latter is nothing to write home about – it’s basically a smaller version of the popular iPad Air 2 – the former is sure different than what we’re used to seeing from Apple.
To put it bluntly – the iPad Pro is huge. It boasts a massive 12.9” display with a resolution of 2732 x 2048 pixels (or as Tim Cook put it: 5.6 million pixels) which you’ll be able to use with the help of the newly introduced Apple Pencil (remember, the thing that Steve Jobs hated?). The Apple Pencil is a motion-sensing Stylus that will work hand-in-hand with a bunch of built-in apps, such as ProCreate (illustration and drawing) and YouMake. Another accessory that you will be able to purchase alongside your iPad Pro is a new Smart Keyboard, made of woven fabric that creates the structure of the keys.
Aside from the massive display and interesting accessories, the iPad Pro also boasts a new A9x processor (Apple claims that it’s faster than 90% of most PCs out there), a four-speaker audio system (which will balance the frequency depending on how you are holding the iPad), and should offer a 10hr battery life.
The iPad additions will become available in November.