“IT’S the best iPhone we have ever created. This is iPhone 7”.
These were the words Apple CEO Tim Cook said to the crowd at the Bill Graham Civic Centre in San Francisco during the launch of the iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus and second generation Apple Watch.
iPHONE 7 AND iPHONE 7 PLUS
As expected, Apple has ditched the headphone jack on the new iPhone, a move vice president Phil Schiller attributed to “courage”.
“The courage to move on and do something new that betters all of us,” he said.
While this might sound like a drastic change, there is no need for panic as the removal of the headphone jack isn’t as horrendous as first expected.
The new devices will offer the ability to connect headphones via the Lightning port, with a new set of headphones shipping in every box.
Also included in the box will be an adaptor to connect your existing 3.5mm headphones to Lightning.
In addition to offering Lighting port headphones, Apple has announced AirPod wireless earbuds.
The earbuds will connect to your iPhone or Apple Watch and will offer five hours of battery life, plus a charging case will hold 24 hours of charge.
Infra-red sensors will detect when the AirPods are in your ear and will only play if being worn.
For the first time in iPhone history, the iPhone and iPhone 7 Plus will have stereo speakers, with one at the bottom and one at the top.
Impressively, the new iPhones will now offer twice the volume of the predecessors.
The new enclosure of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus means the devices water and dust resistant, engineered to an IP67 standard.
A new camera system in the iPhone 7 has had some huge advancements, offering a redesigned 12-megapixel sensor, optical image stabilisation and a faster f/1.8 lens — which will improve photos in low light.
True Tone flash now has four LEDs to offer 50 per cent more light output and the image signal processor is now more powerful than ever.
The front facing camera has been upgraded from 5MP to 7MP.
The iPhone 7 Plus will have two lenses and two cameras — one 28mm wide-angle lens and one 56mm telephoto lens.
The two-camera set-up will allow 2x optical zoom without loss of image quality
Similar to what can be accomplished with a larger DSLR, the dual camera will allow a feature called “Depth Effect”, which will determine the depth of field.
This will allow for more creative shots as people can focus the main subject of the image and blur the background with ease.
The retina HD display of the new devices is the best display on any smartphone, being made 25 per cent brighter with cinema standard colours.
The new phone will ship with a new finish called “jet black”, which offers a high gloss finish offering a seamless surface between the glass and back.
Both the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus will also ship in black, gold, silver and rose gold.
The antennas have been made so subtle they can hardly be noticed on the housing and the home button will no longer actually move. Instead of being a physical button, it has had a complete redesign to work with a new Taptic Engine — giving it the same Force Touch makeover seen on the Apple MacBook.
Performance wise, the iPhones’ include the new Apple A10 Fusion chip set — a 64-bit quad-core with two big and two little cores.
In the graphics department, the A10 Fusion will be 50 per cent faster than the A9 and a whopping 240 times faster than the original iPhone.
Mr Schiller said the new processing engine leverages machine learning and has “supercomputer performance”.
Battery life has been improved on both devices, with the iPhone 7 offering an average of two hours more battery life and the iPhone 7 Plus offering one more hour.
All devices will also have double storage capacity with 32GB, 128GB and 256GB models available. Although, the jet black variant will only be available in 128GB and 256GB.
The iPhone 7 will retail from $A1079 and from $A1269 for the iPhone 7 Plus.
Customers will be able to order iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus from Friday, September 9, with the devices shipping, and available in store, on Friday, September 16.
The new Apple-designed wireless AirPods including charging case will be available for $A229 from late October.
Chief operating officer Jeff Williams took to the stage to announce the second generation Apple Watch.
“We are going to keep pushing Watch forward and today we are exited to introduce next generation of Apple Watch,” he said. “We call it Apple Watch Series 2 and it’s been completely reengineered.”
The first big change to the device is the fact it has been made water resistant up to 50 metres, with swimming added to the fitness activities.
Series 2 has a dual core processor that’s up to 50 per cent faster and a graphics chip that’s twice as powerful.
The Apple Watch’s second generation display is also more than two times brighter than the earlier model.
In fact, Mr Williams said it was the “brightest display Apple has ever shipped on any product”.
In addition to the stainless steel and aluminium models, the Series 2 will ship in ceramic.
“This new white Apple Watch in ceramic has a pearl like shine and is four times harder than stainless steel,” he said. “It’s the ultimate combo of beauty and strength.”
Seeing runners as the ideal market, Apple has built-in GPS for phone-free workouts with accurate fitness tracking and measurement.
A partnership with Nike will offer better running analytics.
The original Apple Watch has also been fitted with the same dual processor as the new model.
Now known as Series 1, the watch will have a reduced price and will act as an entry level smart watch for the company, starting at just $A399.
Apple Watch Series 2 will be available in gold, rose gold, silver or space grey aluminium, or silver or space black stainless steel cases paired with a wide variety of bands starting at $A529.
Additionally, the new ceramic Apple Watch Edition starts at $A1799.
Apple’s App Store has now had 140 billion downloads, with the iPhone and iPad being the most popular gaming devices in the world.
Already offering half a million games available for download, Apple has announced one more huge title.
Coming these holidays, Nintendo will launch Super Mario Run and a two-player battle mode called Toad Rally for iOS.