Apple CEO and Robertsdale native Tim Cook kicked off the company’s fall press extravaganza showcasing the technology giant’s latest wares.
The highly anticipated iPhone 6sand iPhone 6s Plus was unveiled with what Apple termed “3D Touch,” which the company said offers faster, more responsive access to various tools, and a 12 megapixel camera. The phone runs on Apple’s latest mobile platform, iOS 9, and a faster chip that Apple said will improve performance.
The iPhone 6s will on sale September 25, will retail for $199, $299 and $399 depending on memory; the 6s Plus will go for $299, $399 and $499. That is the same price as for the previous iPhone 6. New charging docks, along with a range of leather and silicon covers, are also available.
Next up was the iPad Pro, which Apple said is bigger and faster than previous versions of the tablet. “Today we have the biggest news in iPad since the iPad,” Cook said.
Among new devices, there was the larger “iPad Pro.” The supersized tablet comes with a 12.9 inch diagonal screen, Retina Display, improved audio, the Apple Pencil stylus for artists and what the company calls a “smart” keyboard.
The iPad Pro, which will come in gold, silver and “space gray,” will hit shelves in November. Pricing will range from $799 for a tablet with 32GB of memory up to $1,079 for a 128GB, LTE-compatible model.
In announcing the first overhaul of Apple TV in three years, Cook said Apple’s goal is to “provide a new user experience that’s fun and easy to use.” That includes what Apple calls a “revolutionary” remote for its set-top box, which users also may control with Siri, Apple’s voice-activated digital assistant.
The new Apple TV features a designated operating system, tvOS, aimed at encouraging software developers to roll out news apps for the box.
“We believe the future of television is apps,” Cook said.
Indeed, while most of the excitement surrounding Apple’s previous September events focused on the unveiling of a new iPhone, this year there was more buzz about Apple TV.
Apple is positioning the device as an alternative to traditional gaming systems like Microsoft’s Xbox One and Sony’s PlayStation 4 by focusing on more casual, social games that could be downloaded from the App Store. Company executives demonstrated Apple TV’s multiplayer gaming capabilities with a brief session of “Crossy Road,” a popular mobile game.
Cook’s Apple team also touted enhancements to the Apple Watch, including new faces and bands. Williams also highlighted what he said are some 10,000 apps available for the device.
“This is a big deal,” he said. “It’s a really powerful thing to be able to glance at your wrist and see the information important to you.”