It seems to be case of "7 ate 9" as Apple CEO Tim Cook unveiled the next crop of iPhones at the new Steve Jobs Theater on Apple’s new headquarters in Cupertino. The event introduced three new phones: the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 plus and iPhone X but no iPhone 9. A brand new Apple Watch, upgrades to Apple TV, Animojis, Wireless charging and other features were also released.
Billed by Tim Cook as “the future of the smartphone,” the design — referred to as the “iPhone ten” — is intended to “set the path for technology for the next decade” and celebrates 10 years of the iPhone.
The X shares some similarities with the upcoming iPhone 8 and 8 Plus but the X vastly improves upon its predecessor. New is a 5.8″ OLED edge-to-edge Super Retina display with TrueTone and HDR technologies. That new display means that the ubiquitous home button has, as expected, gone by the wayside. Instead, users can now access their home screen simply by swiping up from the bottom while app switching is achieved by swiping from side to side.
The Apple iPhone X will be available to pre-order come October 27 and launches on November 3 in both Silver and Space Grey options. Prices start at $999 USD for the 64GB models and $1,149 USD for the 256GB versions.
No word as yet as to when the devices will be available locally.
iPhone 8 and 8 Plus:
Both models run on the same A11 Bionic chip as the X, which Apple claims is 70 percent faster than the A10. They also come with an upgraded camera, with optical image stabilisation and True Tone technology to adapt colour to the surrounding light. The cameras are specially calibrated for AR, with new gyro and accelerometers to deliver the best experience for motion tracking when you’re playing around with AR on your phone. And like the iPhone X, these also support wireless charging (coming via a software update).
The Apple Watch Series 3 comes with cellular data built-in, so you can leave your phone at home while you go for a jog or take a phone call while you’re catching a wave. That connectivity brings with it a new version of Siri, integration with Maps, and starting next month, Apple Music, so you can carry 40 million songs on your wrist. It still has all your favorite fitness features, like heart rate monitoring, plus smart activity coaching and a GymKit integration that pairs your watch to your gym equipment.
The home button and Touch ID are nowhere to be found on the iPhone X, instead the X will utilise Apple’s new Face ID, making use of the TrueDepth camera system along the top of the display to unlock through advanced facial recognition. Apple’s using that face data to let you unlock your iPhone with a glance. The new Face ID tech, which comes built-in to the iPhone X, uses deep learning and facial mapping to recognize and confirm your identity.
Apple’s animoji is an iMessage add-on that lets you map your facial expressions onto the animal emoji characters available on iOS, which you can then send as animated emoji messages.
Apple’s new class of devices all support wireless charging, and the company is introducing an accessory that lets you charge them all at once. The AirPower charging mat can juice-up three devices at a time simply by placing them on the mat.
The Apple TV is set up to better integrate with platforms like Apple Music, and will soon add all your favourite shows from new partners Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.