Apple’s September 2015 Event Quick Summary

Apple made a lot of announcements today. Here’s a quick breakdown.

Apple Watch

  • Third-party app native support on watchOS 2: Some new native apps that were showcased were Facebook Messenger, iTranslate, GoPro, AirStrip (demoed HIPPA-compliant doctor communications)
  • New bands: Apple announced a new third-party partnership  featuring leather bands and customized watch faces.  There are also new first-party bands, including a Product Red band and new neutral tones for the Sport band.  There is also a new Apple Watch Sport model with a new gold aluminum finishes.
  • Apple Watch OS 2: The operating system upgrade will be available on September 16.

iPad Pro

  • New iPad Pro: The new iPad Pro features a 12.9 inch display and a new, faster A9X processing chip.  The new iOS 9 multitasking features takes full advantage of the larger screen.  And there is a 4-speaker audio system integrated in the back of the iPad Pro.
  • Smart Keyboard: Apple is releasing a Smart Keyboard cover for the iPad Pro that uses a new Smart Connector that transfers data and supplies power to the Smart Keyboard.
  • Apple Pencil: Apple will also release a stylus for the iPad Pro named the “Apple Pencil”.  The stylus features a pressure-sensitive tip to provide high precision and accuracy.  It can be recharged directly from the iPad Pro thanks to the built-in Lightning connector.
  • Microsoft and Adobe partnership: Woah, Microsoft and Adobe employees came on stage to showcase their productivity and creativity apps on iPad Pro.
  • Pricing and Availability: The iPad Pro starts at $799 with 32GB of storage, the Apple Pencil is $99 and the Smart Keyboard is $169.  These products will be available in November.

iPad Mini 4

  • All the features of the iPad Air 2, but now in a smaller former factor. Starting at $399.

Apple TV

  • Apps: Recognizing that many of us are enjoying TV content in apps already on our iPhones and iPads, the new Apple TV integrates an App Store filled with streaming content and games. tvOS will be the name of the new operating system that runs these apps, and some of the apps showcased included Netflix, HBO Now, Hulu, Raymond Adventures, Disney Infinity, Guitar Hero, and Zillow. Crossy Road will integrate multiplayer exclusively on the Apple TV.
  • Siri integration: Hold down the Siri button and say things like “show me comedies” or “show me the Modern Family episode with Edward Norton”. You can also say, “what did she say?” to automatically rewind and temporarily turn on the captions. Or ask her things like sport scores to overlay them overtop the content that is already, without interuppting your viewing.
  • Touch sensitive remote: You can navigate the Apple TV’s interface with familiar touch screen gestures thanks to the new remote.
  • Content aggregation: The new Apple TV can pull in results from iTunes, Netflix, Hulu, HBO, and Showtime, making Siri’s search functions even more powerful.
  • Screen savers: Instead of static pictures, the Apple TV uses exclusive HD videos that adapt to day and night.
  • Tech specs: 64-bit A8 chip, Bluetooth 4.0 remote, and 802.11ac WiFi. Pricing and Availability: $149 with 32GB of storage. It will be available in late October.

iPhone 6s and 6s Plus

  • Display: The display sizes stay the same, but now integrate a new 3D Touch technology that can detect how hard or how light you touch the screen. For example, you can lightly touch on an email to see a preview of the email (and not mark it as “read”) or lightly touch an app to open a shortcut menu.
  • Processor: As the “s” implies, the iPhone 6s utiilizes a new A9 chip that is up to 70% faster than the A8 chip.
  • Camera: The camera has also been upgraded to 12MP and utilizes improved image processing.
  • Live Photos: The iPhone 6s automatically captures “Live Photos” by discreeting taking a short “video” (.5 seconds before and .5 seconds after) with your photo.
  • Price and Availability: iPhone 6S starts at $199 with 16GB of storage, while the 6S Plus will start at $299 for 16GB of storage. Preorders start September 12 and will be released September 25. iOS 9 will be available on September 16.
  • iPhone Upgrade Program: You can get a new unlocked iPhone each year for $32/month which includes AppleCare+.
  • iCloud storage: iCloud storage gets a nice bump, starting at 50GB for $0.99/month (previously you got 20GB for this price).
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