That spine chilling feeling when you watch something you absolutely want? That’s how I felt during the Apple Event today. Apple showed its guts and glory at today’s event that was centred around iOS devices.
Starting with the iPad Pro. The iPad Pro is the flagship tablet Apple has built, and the 12.9” 5.6 million pixels screen is completely stunning. The Pro is made for the person who need this much screen estate. But who doesn’t? Watching movies? Playing games? Drawing and Painting with the Apple Pencil (yeah, its a stylus!)? Sure, the iPad Pro has everything you “want”. But the iPad Pro is pretty hefty on the price scale, starting at $800 for the 32 GB model. Would I buy it? No plans as yet.
I absolutely love the innovation that went into the Apple Pencil. What seemed to be a joke at at first turned out to be some real innovation in the stylus world. The Pencil, coupled with the iPad Pro, will act as a great new tool to interact with the device. Apple has taken a huge step in the design of a stylus. The Pencil can individually manipulate each of the 5.6 million pixels on the iPad Pro, and the tablet is enabled to detect everything from the pressure applied to the angle of tilt of the Pencil to give you the real feeling and effects of using a pencil. Of course, adding to it the third party app features such as those in Microsoft Powerpoint, the Pencil becomes a powerful tool to use with the new iPad. And it sticks to and charges via the device.
iOS 9 on the iPad was developed for the iPad Pro, really. The multitasking features debuted on iOS 9 a few months ago are perfectly functional on the Pro. Multitasking is key in such a large sized product and the ability to run full screen iPad Air apps side by side shows the power of the tablet. The Pro packs in the A9X processor that is almost twice as fast as the previous generation A8 processor. And the iPad Pro weighs just as much as the first iPad and is just 6.9mm thin, showing how much technology has changed in the last few years.
Then came the Apple TV.
Before I go ahead, I should mention that because (almost) everything was leaked beforehand, there wasn’t much surprisingly new. Thanks to 9to5Mac for majority of the leaks.
The Apple TV upgrade this year is huge. Everything about the TV has changed. Siri is built into the guts of the device and the all new remote makes navigate so much easier. Apple put the icing on the cake with the AppStore for tvOS, that’ll enable developers to build and publish apps and games for the Apple TV. I loved the fact the games like Crossy Road are hitting the TV with multiplayer modes.
The TV runs on the Apple A8 chip that is seen in the iPhone 6. Its far more powerful than the average streaming box, and I believe its priced pretty well, starting at $149 for the 32 GB base model.
The Apple TV comes with an all new remote that has a touch pad on it. It also integrates a Siri button… reminding me, Siri as very powerful on the Apple TV. You can ask Siri to find you any media item or even help you discover some new content. You can ask question like “Recommend me some action movies” to which it’ll drop a list of great action movies. You can follow up this command with “sort out the James Bond ones” to sort the movies listed in the previous command. Also, Siri doesn’t just search iTunes for content; it also simultaneously searches services like Showtime and Netflix. So you can literally ask Siri, “Play me the latest episode of Big Bang Theory” and it'll find it and play it for you!
The TV is great, but what can be better? The iPhone.
iPhones are the most popular phones on the planet (fact). I wonder how Apple comes up with new ideas to be implemented every single year on their iPhone? Just watching the iPhone 6S on my TV was such a thrilling experience, because Apple just bombarded the floor with some neat new science and some really advanced interaction capabilities.
The iPhone 6S features the "next step after multitouch” 3D Touch technology. Force touching a screen to do tasks is no more a gimmick — Apple has really implemented the 3D Touch technology very well into the iPhone. You’ll have to watch Apple’s video to see it in action and understand. Basically previewing items and opening up hidden menus can be done using the 3D Touch. But there are a lot of small yet important features that make 3D Touch worthy of appreciation.
Here is the video:
Other than the 3D technology, we saw some significant camera upgrades. The new 12 MP iSight camera takes full resolution pictures and 4K video. Apple has really worked on improving the actual sensor technology to reduce saturation and blurring. The images on the website look good, but I’d prefer real life tests to prove the camera performance.
The pricing for the iPhone is:
The new pricing strategy includes this amazing new contract program for US customers - pay about $33/month and you get every new iPhone that comes to the market every year. Not just that, you even get AppleCare+ throughout. What better?
Other than these major releases, we saw a few new colours and band options added to the Apple Watch collection. Also, the iPad Mini 4 was mentioned as “all the power of the new iPad in a smaller package” and will be replacing the iPad Mini 3 in the iPad lineup.
So what did you like most about the event? The One Republic concert in the end? Sure. But I’m most excited about the new iPhone and the 3D Touch abilities of them. Can’t wait to try these products out! And by the way, iOS 9 comes out on 16th of September.
That is it! New iPad, Apple TV and iPhone/s. I’ll continue writing about these products in the coming days.