Apple announced iPhone 6, Apple Pay, and Apple Watch on Tuesday.
Today’s presentation from Apple CEO Tim Cook and a handful of other big wigs at the tech behemoth unveiled the iPhone 6 with a larger screen, Apple Watch (the company’s entrance into the wearable tech space), and a new way to pay for things at retail stores called Apple Pay.
The following is our live-blog coverage of what Apple unveiled during their keynote presentation.
iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus
Cook kicked off the event with the unveiling of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, with a new “Retina HD” display. Apple calls the new screen the most beautiful display ever made for a phone. The two phones are 4.7″ and 5.5″ respectively. The phones are 6.9 mm and 7.1 mm thick – the thinnest iPhones yet.
With larger displays, iOS boasts new features like a home screen with a horizontal orientation.
Apple claims the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus have “equal or better battery life” than the iPhone 5s. The new phones have battery life averages as follows:
The phones boast under-the-hood features like faster wifi, faster LTE, and a barometer (which lets you do things like see how high above ground level you are). In addition, wifi calling is now available which lets you make phone calls over your wifi network. Apple says the phone will automatically switch between cellular and wifi depending on the quality of the call.
The phone’s camera has been improved with lots of technical improvements. You can also take larger panorama photos. Here are some example photos taken on an iPhone 6:
Lastly concerning photos, Apple has added burst mode to the front-facing camera. In other words, you’re about to reach a whole new level with your selfies.
iPhone 6 will start at $199 for 16 GB with a 2-year contract. The $299 phone will be 64 GB, and the $399 phone will be 128 GB.
iPhone 6 Plus will start at $299 for 16 GB, $399 for 64 GB, and $499 for 128 GB. They will begin shipping September 19. Pre-orders begin this Friday, September 12.
iOS 8 will be released September 17 for free.
Apple is introducing a new way to pay for products in retail stores because the company argues that credit and debit cards are outdated and insecure.
Apple Pay is built into iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus using NFC technology. A new chip in the devices stores your payment information securely. Your credit cards are stored in your Passbook app. Apple doesn’t store your credit card number, instead using an account number and a one-time payment number with a “dynamic security code.”
If your phone gets lost, you no longer have to cancel your card. Since Apple only stores your account number on your device, you just have to remove your credit cards via Find My iPhone on a computer or another iOS device.
Apple Pay already works in 220,000 U.S. merchant locations with more to come soon.
The new technology will also work with Apple Watch.
Apple Watch (formerly known as iWatch)
Introduced as “the next chapter in Apple’s story,” here is the Apple Watch:
The device works seamlessly with the iPhone, supports third party apps, and is a comprehensive health and fitness device.
Cook says that the Apple Watch required the same kind of user interface breakthrough that the Mac and iPhone had (the mouse and touch screen respectively). The breakthrough on the Apple Watch is the Digital Crown. The physical part is on the side of the phone and helps you navigate the system.
The Apple Watch boasts the ability to turn itself on when you raise your wrist to look at the screen. You can communicate with other Apple Watch devices. It can detect force, includes a touch screen.
There are numerous different designs for the Apple Watch wristband. The Watch device itself comes in two different sizes so they can accommodate everyone.
Apple unveiled more details about the Watch during a live demo. You can pan around to your various apps in the new home menu by touching. The Crown lets you zoom in and out of your home screen. When you swipe up from the bottom you can get all of your information at a glance — like your current location, the events on your calendar, and applications like music.
When you receive iMessages, you will be presented with quick replies. You can also use dictation or a new feature called “Animated Emojis” which you can customize with a tap of your finger.
With Maps, the Watch will give you haptic (physical) feedback on your wrist to let you know when to turn left or right. The feedback will differ depending on which direction you need to go.
The Watch is capable of reading a person’s heart beat through their wrist. In addition to being able to send a heart beat to someone in your contacts, you can draw messages.
Third party apps work with Apple Watch, including services like Facebook. A specific example of the integration: Apps by hotels will let you unlock your hotel room door just by putting the Watch up to your door.
Apple has also created two new applications for the Watch called Fitness and Workout. The Fitness app monitors your health throughout the day. Workout helps you with your workout routine.
The Fitness app’s goal is to let you “sit less, move more, and get some exercise.” It does this by monitoring things like how long you’ve stood during the day and how much physical activity you’ve had. Apple says the Watch gets to know you “the way a personal trainer would.” It’ll give you personal and achievable goals, which gives you “a far better chance at succeeding.”
Apple Watch charges with a magnetic charger and works with Apple Pay (see above). It starts at $349 and will be available in “early 2015.” No details about battery life were revealed.