Apple has wrapped today's announcement, and now we've got our first look at a smaller iPhone, the SE, as well as a new, 9.7-inch iPad Pro. Tim Cook briefly weighed in on Apple's legal fight with the FBI, and the company showed off some software updates. We've got all the news collected right here.
Mar 30, 2016
Last week, Apple introduced both a new iPhone and a new iPad. Normally, such a dual unveiling would be blockbuster news in the tech and business worlds. But, this time, it wasn’t. That’s because both announcements were tactical business moves, products which lack breakthrough technology, but aim to appeal to owners of older Apple models.Read Article >
The company acted accordingly. It held the event in a smallish venue on its campus, rather than a big one in San Francisco. And, it waited until halfway into an hour-long presentation before even mentioning the new products.
Mar 25, 2016
Earlier this week at Apple’s campus in Cupertino, the company announced a brand-new iPhone. The heavens didn’t part, pop bands didn’t play, and people aren’t camping out at Apple Stores to buy the thing. It was a subdued launch, for a smaller, mid-cycle phone that looks exactly like a phone from 2013.Read Article >
But don’t let its unspectacular rollout or its throwback design fool you: Apple knows exactly what it’s doing with the $399 iPhone SE. It’s a shiny little fishing lure for first-time iPhone buyers or people who feel overdue for an upgrade. Those people might be tempted by the many good Android phones that can be had for less than $400, and Apple is taking them on more directly than it ever has before.
Mar 22, 2016
After the first 20 minutes of Apple’s iPhone SE and iPad Pro launch event yesterday, I was enamored with the world’s most valuable company for the courage it was showing. Starting off his presentation with talk of privacy, environmentalism, and health, CEO Tim Cook was addressing real, substantive issues that the tech industry often disregards or pays mere lip service to. He used Apple’s big stage to ask pointed questions about government intrusion into private lives, the polluting effects of tech manufacturing, and how the future of medicine might be shaped by the quantification of health metrics. It was beautiful and important. It was mature.Read Article >
Mar 22, 2016Read Article >
Life is full of mysteries, but the naming convention for Apple's tiny iPhone is no longer one of them. Phil Schiller, Apple senior vice president of marketing, confirmed the name to journalist Jason Cipriani last night. The SE stands for "Special Edition" bringing an end to the greatest controversy Twitter has grappled with since the size of Trump's hands. Way to go, humanity. We did it.
Mar 21, 2016
At today's announcement, Apple, as it sometimes does, gave prominent stage time to the future of the planet. After an interlude from CEO Tim Cook, Lisa Jackson, Apple vice president of environment, policy, and social issues, stepped on stage to make an announcement: 93 percent of Apple's global operations now run on sustainable energy.Read Article >
Mar 21, 2016
It’s been just over a month since a court ordered Apple to break security measures on the San Bernardino iPhone — and for most of the time since, the company has been scrambling to keep up. In the days after the order, Apple was slammed with bad press from cable news and other outlets. Since then, Tim Cook has done more interviews and appearances, but it’s always been pushing back against the anti-encryption narrative, never been on his own terms.Read Article >
At Apple’s big event today, that changed. There’s no bigger homefield advantage than an Apple iPhone event, and Cook used it to try to reset the conversation on iPhone encryption. Speaking to Apple’s most devoted fans, he framed the legal fight as a necessary measure to protect user privacy.
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Apple today announced the 4-inch iPhone SE, which is essentially an iPhone 5S with 6S specs and a new low price of $399. For many people, that alone will be sufficient reason to be excited, but the iPhone SE has significance that stretches far beyond its modest dimensions. This phone will lead Apple's charge into the fastest-growing markets of India and China, realign the company's strategy for how it sells its flagship product, and also create a unique new proposition that Android has no direct answer to.
Steve Jobs was often praised for returning simplicity to Apple's product lineup, and Jony Ive has practically written epistles about the topic. So you can imagine how Twitter handled today's iterative announcements of the iPhone SE and the 9.7-inch iPad Pro:Read Article >
Mar 21, 2016
Apple’s new iPad Pro is the twelfth iPad to be released since the original debuted back in 2010, and it borrows features from two of Apple’s existing tablets. The new iPad Pro has the size and weight of the iPad Air 2 — 9.7-inches, which Apple notes is by far the most popular of its three iPad size choices — while bringing over the power and accessories of the 12.9-inch iPad Pro launched last year. (Yes, the new iPad Pro and the existing iPad Pro have the same name — you’ll have to get used to identifying them by size.)Read Article >
Apple now offers three sizes of iPad with multiple variants at almost every size. That’s a lot of iPads for sale. The problem is, Apple isn’t selling as many iPads as it used to. Sales of the tablet have been inching downward for years, and in Apple’s most recent quarterly report, iPad sales fell 25 percent from the previous year.
When Apple announced the iPhone 6, the camera bump was its secret shame. Eventually, people got used to it, even embraced it — after all, lots of smartphones have camera bumps on them. But the bump has shown up again, this time on the new 9.7-inch iPad Pro. Understandably, Apple didn't exactly call attention to this aspect of its tablet's design during its announcement, but it's clear as day in the promotional material.Read Article >
This bump didn't appear on the first iPad Pro, presumably because the larger 12.9-inch display means more room inside to shuffle components about. But with the smaller Pro and its 12-megapixel camera (better than the 8-megapixel camera on its bigger brother), there apparently just wasn't enough space. And bump, there it is:
You either want an Apple Watch, own an Apple Watch, or are so uninterested in the idea that you never care to touch one. If you fall into those first few camps, today was a pretty good day. Apple dropped the price of the cheapest Apple Watch to a much more manageable-sounding $299, and at the same time introduced a new suite of Watch bands.Read Article >
The sport and leather bands now come in new colors, but Apple also announced a new nylon band as well. You can check out some close up photos from the event and all the variations of the new nylon band below.
Mar 21, 2016
Apple's iOS 9.3 is now available to download. While it's only a minor release, it does have a surprising amount of features for iPads and iPhones. The biggest addition is a new Night Shift mode that shifts the color temperature of the display based on the time and location of your device. It's very similar to the popular F.lux tool, and it works by reducing the amount of blue light emitting from the screen. It's believed that exposure to bright blue light in the evening can make it harder to sleep, so you can automatically schedule Night Shift to turn on in the evenings.Read Article >
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Apple today announced a much-anticipated addition to its 9.7-inch tablet lineup — except the new device isn't called the iPad Air 3. Instead, the company is classifying the tablet, the first in Apple's flagship size group since 2014's iPad Air 2, as an iPad Pro. It's just a little smaller than the gargantuan 12.9-inch iPad Pro released last fall, and it comes equipped with all the same perks: Pencil and Smart Keyboard compatibility, four-speaker audio system, and boosts to RAM and processor speed.
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Apple's newest iPhone looks just like the old iPhone ... from 2012. The iPhone SE is a four-inch smartphone utilizing the same design as the iPhone 5, yet with upgraded innards putting it on par with the performance of the iPhone 6S. It's meant to appeal to customers who have long yearned for a smartphone that fits more easily in their hands and are willing to make a couple of compromises in exchange. Now Apple fans have more choices than ever — a 4-inch display, a 4.7-inch one, or 5.5-inch one — and will have to take into account all the side effects those choices have.
Apple just announced the iPhone SE, a 4-inch phone with the guts of an iPhone 6S that looks a lot like the 5S. So, naturally, Apple has apparently discontinued the iPhone 5S. The 5S has been replaced by the SE on the iPhone hub of the Apple website, and the old URL that brought you do the 5S order page simply redirects you back to the main iPhone page.Read Article >
The news comes as no real surprise; Apple discontinued the iPhone 5 when it announced the iPhone 5c, and then it discontinued the 5c last fall. With a much more powerful iPhone SE being made available by the end of this month, Apple apparently sees no need to keep selling the underpowered 5S; a shame, because as nice as it is to see Apple embracing the sub-$400 phone wars, it'd be even nicer to see a truly cheap 5S kick around on store shelves for a while. (Though, if you're quick, you can probably still catch some of the remaining stock before the 5S is really gone.)
Apple has been busy rounding out its iPad line-up today, adding not only a new 9.7-inch iPad Pro, but a new memory option for the 12.9-inch model, taking its maximum storage up to 256GB. For this amount of memory, though, you need to pay top dollar — $1,099 to be precise. (There's a 256GB option for the smaller 9.7-inch iPad Pro as well that costs $899.)Read Article >
This is the most memory we've seen in an iPad, but it makes sense. Apple is determined to position the iPad Pro as a replacement for users' PCs, and during their presentation today they highlighted a number of stats — including the Pro's processing power — in order to make this comparison. Having enough memory to do serious work on your tablet and rely on it as your main device makes 256GB a necessary option. Now if only they'd reconsider offering such little storage on the new iPhone SE.
It's been an unusual Apple event, starting off with talk of privacy, environmentalism, and health, but once Apple got into its usual product launch groove, it couldn't resist burning its nearest and dearest competitors. In announcing the iPhone SE and new iOS 9.3 update, Apple noted that 80 percent of active iOS devices are already on iOS 9, contrasting it pointedly to the two percent (technically 2.3 percent) of Android devices on the latest Android Marshmallow. For iPad Pro, Apple's pitch was geared directly to Windows users, aiming to lure them away to a different sort of productivity machine. Phil Schiller chose to highlight a stat that Intel and Microsoft itself have recently been reciting: more than 600 million PCs out there haven't been upgraded for the past five years. "This is really sad," said Schiller, before moving on to talk about the more than 1 million iPad-specific apps in the App Store and particular advantages of the new 9.7-inch Pro tablet.Read Article >
Introducing the iPhone SE
Mar 21, 2016
Meet Liam, Apple's friendly project (and not at all a One Direction member) designed to take apart your old iPhone for recycling purposes. He's not terrifying at all.Read Article >
Liam comes out of Apple's new environmental initiative. The robot is able to detect parts within the device and strip them out safely and efficiently so they can be refurbished. He also, apparently, has a tendency to pause and look at the camera when being watched. He's not terrifying at all.
Apple said today that there are now over 1 million apps designed for the iPad. It's a big milestone that speaks to just how robust the app ecosystem is around Apple's tablet, and suggests that it isn't slowing down. The App Store itself only hit 1 million apps overall in in late 2013, at which point half of those apps supported the iPad. Two years and a few months later, the iPad figure has doubled.Read Article >
At this point, the iPad is nearly six years old — about the same age the iPhone was when the App Store hit 1 million. Apple is still fighting for its tablet to be seen as a device that can truly be used for creation, rivaling a laptop, and it's the increasingly good apps made for it that help make that a compelling argument.
Mar 21, 2016
Kevin Hart has become a Hollywood punchline for his willingness to appear in multiple mediocre comedies each year. But today, the comedian gained a powerful ally.Read Article >
At this afternoon's Apple event, CEO Tim Cook revealed a fondness for the hardworking actor. Explaining how Siri voice control can be used to find "great movies" on Apple TV, he requested the device "Show me movies with Kevin Hart." Siri obliged, displaying a condensed list of the Kevin Hart oeuvre.
Apple just announced a new, 9.7-inch version of the iPad Pro, which means the company also announced a new accessory: a smaller Smart Keyboard. Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of marketing, announced the news during Apple's event this afternoon in Cupertino, CA. The new keyboard will be available for pre-order on the same day as the iPad, March 24th, for $149.Read Article >
The Verge liked the Smart Keyboard that was released alongside the first iPad Pro, especially because it added some utility to the rather unwieldy tablet. But it did make the 12-inch iPad feel much bulkier — the keyboard bulged out from the tablet instead of just lying flat. It was one of a number of curious (and, honestly, bad) design decisions that were announced in 2015. Microsoft's Surface tablets haven't had this problem, and they've been around for years, so here's hoping the smaller Smart Keyboard cuts down on this problem.
The Apple Pencil will work Apple's new 9.7-inch iPad Pro. Like the larger iPad Pro, Apple is really pitching this smaller model as a tool for content creation, and being able to use a stylus for art and design is, naturally, a big part of that. As with the other Pro, the stylus can be used here to do pretty much anything your finger can, but with more precision, be it navigating around the OS or writing and drawing.Read Article >
Apple uses a slightly different screen technology on both of its iPad Pro models, which is what allows them to support the Pencil. Both Pro models become more sensitive when the Pencil is active, doubling how often the display looks for touch input. That's what allows the stylus to work well here, whereas styluses used on the standard iPad often leave much to be desired.
Apple says that its reason for making another small phone is simple: "For some people, they simply love smaller phones."Read Article >
In a world where larger phones are king, Apple needed to give some amount of explanation for why it's making the iPhone SE, refreshing its 4-inch design in 2016 when basically no other company is making a high-end phone in this size. Apple even admits, most of its customers aren't going to buy this thing. "The vast majority of our customers prefer these larger display iPhones," says Apple VP Greg Joswiak.
Mar 21, 2016Read Article >
Apple just announced the 4-inch iPhone SE, and once again it's starting with a 16GB version — the same amount of storage space it has been offering since the iPhone 3GS in 2009. In those seven years, apps have gotten bigger, and Apple has given people reasons to fill that storage space up with huge 12-megapixel images and 4K video. We laid out the problem with offering a 16GB iPhone when Apple did it again last year, and in the interim nothing has changed to make it more palatable; at this point it's an embarrassment to offer a device that's crippled by paltry storage space, especially when most people are likely to buy the cheapest model.
Mar 21, 2016
The new iPhone SE is powered by an A9 processor — just like the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus that Apple introduced in September. The powerful internals represent a major leap forward compared to the aging iPhone 5S, as now the company's smaller-sized handset is essentially on equal footing with the larger iPhones. 9to5Mac has for weeks been reporting that this would be the case; as expected, the iPhone SE also features an M9 chip for motion tracking and to allow users to say "Hey Siri" to activate Apple's personal assistant.Read Article >