Apple announced the year’s new iPhone on Wednesday, Sept. 9. Lucky for consumers (and Apple’s bank accounts), they went far and beyond the new iPhone. We got a neat look at some revamps of current products and an introduction to some fresh innovations that promise an exciting year for technology.
One exciting unveiling was the introduction of the new iPad Pro. Chalked up as the Microsoft Surface’s main competitor, the iPad Pro will include a 12.9 inch screen, and will be loaded with considerable processing power, courtesy of Apple’s A9X chip.
This new device will look like a stretched iPad, but because of unique technological advances, it will be able to serve better in place of a laptop, in comparison with the current iPad lineup. For our audio-inclined readers, it will have a first-in-class quad speaker system with the speaker housings built right into the structure of the iPad.
Along with the tablet, Apple announced an Apple Pencil and smart keyboard. The Apple Pencil is their version of a stylus, but it will go beyond today’s concept of the stylus by communicating an idea of pressure and angle to the tablet, making the user’s writing and drawing experience much more fluid. The smart keyboard acts like any bluetooth keyboard you’ve used in the past, but it is powered and controlled through a magnetic pin system.
Next in Apple’s speech was the long-awaited revision to the Apple TV. Unfortunately, since its last iteration, we have seen competitors like the Roku3, Amazon FireStick and other media streaming boxes, but this newest Apple TV has come back with a vengeance.
Not only does it contain the features of other boxes, but it adds Apple’s iTunes, and has a search capability that searches through all services loaded on the box. Another advancement is the addition of an App Store to the TV. The new remote has the standard controls that we’re used to, such as volume controls, but most of the directional controls are operated through a small glass touch screen. Between this and a built-in accelerometer, the remote is used like an iPhone to control games. In fact, an iPhone can also be used as a game controller.
The final addition to this revolution is Siri. You can have this digital assistant search for content by actor/actress, director or by giving it vague parameters to search through. For example, you could ask Siri to show you just family-friendly shows, or you could ask for animated family shows that involve a specific voice actor that was featured in a single episode. Siri promises to perform flawlessly.
Now on to the main event: the new iPhone. The iPhone 6S and 6S Plus will feature a similar body to the previous iteration, but will have completely revamped internals.
One of the most exciting additions is a feature called 3D Touch which serves to detect the force with which you press on the screen to reveal a few new features and shortcuts for actions users go for most frequently.
Another interesting update is a change to a 12 megapixel rear camera. This allows for stunning resolution in each photo, not to mention new video capabilities. Can you say 4K? The software working with photos has also changed to allow for an interesting feature known as Live Photos. Did you ever watch the “Harry Potter” movies and wish those moving pictures were real? Well, now they are, and Apple insists they are not short video clips, but rather extended exposures of still photos. It is an interesting concept, and I am excited to see what people do with it.
The Apple TV and iPad Pro will be released by November. For those who have been waiting for updates for operating systems, the new iOS will be available in a few weeks, along with pre-orders for the iPhone, and the new OS X for computers, El Capitan, will be available on Sept. 30, five days after the iPhone is available. So, keep an eye out!
Lotfi is a member of the Class of 2015.