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Everything you need to know from Apple’s big ‘Far out’ event

Apple’s yearly September shindig has just concluded, and there’s a lot to chew on. While we didn’t get any new iPads this year, we’ve been given four new iPhones and three new smartwatches, with brand new additions to both categories.

You can rewatch the live stream if you want to catch on every last detail from the live stream, but even with Apple’s impeccable editing and production values, it’s pretty darned long. Why not allow us to bring you the choicest morsels from the event?

We’ll be digging down deeper into the finer points of Apple’s keynote throughout the week, but for now, consider this your one-stop cheat sheet for all the major announcements from Apple’s latest event.

iPhone 14 Pro & iPhone 14 Pro Max

The iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro look to be where the real innovation is with this year’s smartphone offering, thanks to an exciting new notch design and a bold new camera system. Here’s what Apple’s new flagship phones have to offer.

• 4 colors: space black, silver, gold, deep purple.

• New front design with reworked TrueDepth Camera, now takes up 30% less space with the proximity sensor positioned behind the display. It’s now more of a ‘pill’ than a ‘notch’.

• Something Apple is called ‘Dynamic Island’ works around the new TrueDepth camera, expanding and contracting with notifications, album art, call info, and more.

• New display with thinner borders, greater active area – brighter with peak HDR brightness of 1600 nits, outdoors peak of 2000 nits.

• Always-On display provides heads-up glanceable info, display can drop to 1Hz rather than 10Hz in previous Pro.

• New A16 Bionic chip, 16 billion transistors, built on 4nm process – 40% faster than competition, 20% more efficient performance cores.

• GPU has 50% more memory bandwidth.

• 48MP main camera with quad-pixel sensor for brighter 12MP shots, 65% larger than 13 Pro, second-gen sensor shift stabilization system.

• Mid- to low-light performance boosted across all cameras with new Photonic Engine, which applies Deep Fusion earlier in imaging process.

• Middle 12 megapixels used for 2x telephoto zoom at 48m focal length, adds to existing 3x zoom.

• 48MP shots possible through ProRaw.

• New Ultra-wide with larger 1.4µm pixels, 3x improvement in low light.

• Redesigned flash with 9-LED array.

• 48MP shots possible through ProRaw.

• Cinematic Mode now supports 4K at 30fps.

• Crash Detection uses sensors and algorithms to detect when a crash occurs and warn emergency services.

• Emergency SOS via satellite which lets you connect via satellite, not cell tower – need to be pointing directly at satellite using app, free for two years in the US and Canada.

Greg Joswiak, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing, said:

“Our customers count on their iPhone every day, and with iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max, we’re delivering more advancements than any other iPhone. iPhone 14 Pro introduces a camera system that empowers every user — from the casual user to the professional — to take their best photos and video, and innovative new technologies like the Always-On display and the Dynamic Island, which offers new interactions for notifications and activities. Groundbreaking safety capabilities bring users even more security, offering help when they need it most. And with the incredibly powerful and efficient A16 Bionic chip and all-day battery life, this is the best iPhone yet.”

Pre-orders for the iPhone 14 Pro start September 9, with shipping set for September 16. Prices will start from $999 for the 6.1-inch iPhone 14 Pro and $1,099 for the 6.7-inch iPhone 14 Pro Max.

Apple will continue to offer the Apple 13 Mini and the iPhone 12 from $599, the iPhone 13 from $699, and the iPhone SE from $429.

iPhone 14 & iPhone 14 Plus

As predicted, the iPhone 14 is a bit of a marginal step forward from last year’s iPhone 13. However, the exciting news comes in the form of the all-new iPhone 14 Plus. This super-sized phone is as big as a Max model, but with the more modest specs (and more modest pricing) of the regular iPhone.

• iPhone 14 Plus joins iPhone 14, with 6.7-inch display rather than 6.1-inch

• Improved thermal performance

• Available in 5 colors: midnight, starlight, blue, purple, Product Red.

• Best battery life ever in an iPhone on iPhone 14 Plus

• A15 Bionic with 5-core GPU lifted in from iPhone 13 Pro, 18% faster graphics than iPhone 13 equivalent.

• New larger 12MP main sensor with larger 1.9µm pixels and f/1.5 aperture for a 49% improvement in low-light capture.

• New and improved TrueDepth camera with  f/1.9 aperture and autofocus, 2x low light improvement.

• Mid- to low-light performance boosted across all cameras with new Photonic Engine, which applies Deep Fusion earlier in imaging process.

• 12MP ultra-wide comes with 2x low light improvement.

• Improved video stabilisation, Action Mode for extremely shaky footage.

• eSIM – for first time, no US iPhone comes with a physical SIM tray.

• Crash Detection uses sensors and algorithms to detect when a crash occurs and warn emergency services.

• Emergency SOS via satellite which lets you connect via satellite, not cell tower – need to be pointing directly at satellite using app, free for two years in the US and Canada.

Greg Joswiak, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing, said:

“Our customers rely on their iPhone every day, and iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus introduce groundbreaking new technologies and important safety capabilities. With the new, larger 6.7-inch display on iPhone 14 Plus, users can enjoy more content onscreen when browsing the web and even more text. Both phones have a powerful new Main camera with a huge leap in low-light performance, advanced connectivity capabilities with 5G and eSIM, and the incredible performance of A15 Bionic, which helps enable even better battery life. All of this, tightly integrated with iOS 16, makes iPhone more essential than ever.”

Pre-orders for the iPhone start this Friday, with shipping set for September 24. Prices will start from $799 for the 6.1-inch iPhone 14. Pre-orders start September 9, with availability from September 16.

The iPhone 14 Plus starts from $899. Pre-orders start September 9, with availability from October 7.

AirPods Pro Gen 2

Apple’s first-generation AirPods Pro took the world by storm. The second generation AirPods Pro look to continue Apple’s good work, with a familiar design and fancy new audio features. Here’s how the new AirPods Pro is shaping up.

• New H2 chip with high-bandwidth connectivity.

• New low distortion audio driver and custom amplifier to power it.

• Personalised Spatial Audio, using iPhone camera to provide a custom sound profile.

• Improved ANC with advanced computational audio allies up to double the noise cancelation capabilities over the original.

• New extra-small ear tip option.

• Adaptive Transparency automatically removes harsh environmental noise like construction work, and processes 48,000 times per second.

• Touch control adds a capacitive sensing layer that lets you adjust volume with a light swipe up and down on stem.

• 6 hours of listening time on a single charge, which is 1.5 hours more than the previous model.

• Case allows 30 hours of listening, an increase of 6 hours over original AirPods Pro.

• Case also adds a speaker for clearer location finding, and can now use an Apple Watch charger.

AirPods Pro Gen 2

Bob Borchers, Apple’s vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing, said:

“AirPods revolutionized the wireless headphone category with an innovative design and incredible sound quality. With the new AirPods Pro, Apple raises the bar once again. The new AirPods Pro delivers even better sound quality, a more immersive listening experience with Personalized Spatial Audio, and transformative audio features like Adaptive Transparency. With up to double the noise-canceling power of their predecessor, the world’s bestselling wireless headphones just got even better.”

The new AirPods Pro will cost $249. Orders open on September 9, with availability from September 23.

Apple Watch S8 & Apple Watch SE 2

As anticipated, we saw the launch of the eighth-generation Apple Watch, as well as the second generation of the more affordable Apple Watch SE. Here are the key specs…

• Apple Watch Series 8 is available in 41mm and 45mm aluminum or stainless steel cases.

• New temperature sensor for women’s health – twin sensors improve accuracy – with improved Cycle Tracking and automatic ovulation alerts.

• Crash Detection will detect if you’re in a severe car crash, connecting you with emergency services, logging your location, and alerting your next of kin.

• Low power mode coming to Series 4 and later, can give you 36 hours battery life on a full charge, temporarily disabling auto workout detection and always-on-display.

• Now supports international roaming, linking up with your iPhone’s roaming plan.

• Four aluminum colors: midnight, starlight, silver, and product red. Three stainless steel finishes: silver, gold, graphite.

• Apple Watch SE 2 has a 30% larger display than the original model.

• Same S8 chip as Apple Watch Series 8 and Apple Watch Ultra, 20% faster than before.

• Available in 40mm and 44mm aluminum cases, comes in midnight, silver, and starlight.

• Redesigned back case made of lightweight nylon composite material.

• Can pair a kid’s SE with a parent’s iPhone.

Apple Watch Series 8

Jeff Williams, Apple’s chief operating officer, said:

“We hear from customers how Apple Watch helps them stay connected with loved ones, be more active, and live healthier lives. Apple Watch Series 8 reinforces our commitment in these areas with the addition of pioneering technology, while Apple Watch SE brings advanced core features at a new starting price. Powered by watchOS 9, the best smartwatches deliver more capabilities than ever before.”

The Apple Watch S8 starts from $399 for the GPS model and $499 for the cellular model. Each S8 comes with 3 months Apple Fitness free. It’s available to order now, with availability set for September 16.

The new Apple Watch SE starts from $249 for the GPS model and $299 for the cellular model. It’s available to order now, with availability set for September 16.

Apple Watch Ultra

By far the most exciting Apple Watch announcement for some time, the Apple Watch Ultra is designed for extreme sports fans, outdoorsy types, and even deep-sea divers. It’s “the best sports watch out there”.

Here’s what this chunky piece of kit has to offer.

• All new design with a 49mm titanium case and a sapphire crystal front.

• Biggest, brightest display (up to 2,000 nits) in an Apple Watch yet.

• New customizable action button in orange, larger Digital Crown, and side button designed to be used whilst wearing gloves.

• Second speaker for extra clarity.

• Cellular in every Apple Watch Ultra.

• Biggest Watch battery yet with up to 36 hours on a single charge, 60 hours using a new battery optimization setting coming this Fall.

• Wayfinder watch face with compass and up to eight complications, while Night mode switches to black with red face for easy visibility.

• 3 new bands – Trail Loop, Alpine Loop, and Ocean Band.

• WR100 – twice the water resistance of previous Apple Watches – and MIL-STD 810 rated.

• EN13319 certified and new Oceanic+ app for scuba divers, as well as new depth gauge.

Apple Watch Ultra

Jeff Williams, Apple’s chief operating officer, said:

“Inspired by explorers and athletes from around the world, we created an entirely new category of Apple Watch designed for new and extreme environments — it’s the most rugged and capable Apple Watch yet. Apple Watch Ultra is a versatile tool that empowers users to push their boundaries with adventure, endurance, and exploration.”

All models of the Apple Watch Ultra will cost $799. You can order from today, with availability from September 23.

Software Releases

Apple also quietly announced that iOS 16 will be released to the public next week on Monday, September 12. Meanwhile, iPadOS 16.1 is expected to arrive a little later in the year.

Keep an eye on Settings > General > Software Update for the new release, and keep an eye on our Tips & Tricks app for a big content update with all-new iOS 16 and iPadOS 16.1 tips coming soon!

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