Apple’s latest hardware showcase: iPhones XS, XS MAX, XR, Apple Watch S-4

By: Rose Shelton

It’s that time of the year when Apple aficionados wait for latest products’ to unveil even as they are glued to their devices live streaming the most touted event of the year. So this year, on Wednesday, at the┬ácompany’s annual press conference at the Steve Jobs theater, Cupertino, California, Apple announced the latest Apple hardware updates to the world.

What Was Unveiled

  • The Apple Watch Series 4
  • The iPhones series XS, XS Max, XR

iPhone XS & iPhone XS Max

At the conference it was announced that the high-end iPhone X is getting an upgrade & new size options: a 5.8-inch iPhone XS (US $999) & the 6.5-inch iPhone XS Max (US $1,449). The Max has a larger display than the usual plus-size phones but a similar body.

These devices are designed without the home button. They also feature Face ID in place of a Touch ID fingerprint scanner. There’s good news for camera lovers as there has been a camera upgrade in the newly released devices. The new 12 megapixel cameras have bigger sensors & an improved HDR mode.

Both XS & XS Max have similar specs apart from their screen size. They operate on Apple’s new A12 Bionic processor, faster than the A11 by about 15%. They have improved water resistance that’s supposed to let them stay submerged in 2 meters of water for about half an hour & have support for 2 SIMs & gigabit LTE.

A new feature has been added to the popular portrait mode which defocuses the background of a photo to emphasize the subject. This setting enables customers to adjust the depth of field after taking a picture.

iPhone XR

The 6.1-inch device possesses only one camera with a 12 pixel wide-angle. Apple added a similar portrait feature found in its dual camera devices, which blurs the background. The device kills the 3D touch feature but added some haptic feedback so the screen vibrates a bit in response to touch. iPhone XR comes in a variety of colors which include; white, black, blue, coral & red. It also features a bright LCD screen. It’s, however, missing a home button & is activated by swiping up.

Price & Availability

iPhone XS & XS Max will be available to pre-order on Friday, September 14th & ship Friday, September 21st in the US & other countries. Customers will be able to pre-order the iPhone XR beginning Friday, October 19th & it will hit stores on Friday, October 26th in more than fifty countries.

The iPhone XS Max with 512 GB storage will be the most expensive iPhone ever. Meanwhile, the iPhone XS will cost the same as last year’s iPhone X ($999). The original iPhone X is now $200 cheaper. The cheapest phone in the iPhone line up is the iPhone 7, starting at $449. The iPhone 8 starts at $599.

Current Customers will be able to download iOS 12 starting Monday, September 17th. iOS 12 features new Animojis, customized Memoji & a much-anticipated time management feature to help people use their devices less.

Meanwhile, MacOS Mojave, which will launch Monday, September 24th. It features dark mode, a tool to clean up a messy desktop & some classic iOS apps including News, Voice Memos, Stocks & Home.

The Apple Watch Series 4

Apple also showed off an upgrade to its 3-year-old smartwatch. The Apple Watch Series 4 now has a 30% larger edge-to-edge display. It has a curved screen, it is slightly thinner, has more reliable reception & 2 times faster. The introduction of a new processor takes the credit for the successful introduction of these new features.

The dial on the side feature, which was formerly only available via screen now has haptic feedback to feel vibrations.

This new Apple Watch Series 4 is smarter, faster & thinner. It can also detect when you fall by calculating wrist trajectory & other movements & can send that data to an emergency contact. The latest wearable also touts a built-in (& FDA-approved) EKG to help diagnose heart diseases & other conditions. The company says it’s the first EKG available over the counter.

The Apple Watch Series 4 will cost $499 for built-in connectivity & $399 for a standard model. It will be available for pre-order starting Friday & ship Friday, September 21st.

Give back your old devices

Apple is also launching a recycling program called GiveBack. The company will buy your old devices on the basis that it’s in good condition or recycle them for free if it’s not usable.

Image Credit: Apple