A little over fifteen years ago, Steve Jobs stood on stage and revealed the first iPhone in a reveal that would change the world as we know it (for nostalgia, the full video can be found here). On Wednesday, Apple CEO Tim Cook continued the tradition of launch announcements to share some new features and updates to the iPhone, Apple Watch, and AirPods.
The launch event was pre-recorded and delivered from Apple Park, the company’s headquarters in Cupertino, California. Cook started sharing a montage of users who had used their Apple Watches in life-threatening situations and then shared some new features of the upcoming Apple Watch 7. The watch’s biggest change (in addition to a slightly new design and bigger screen) is that it is reportedly more durable and able to withstand more extreme conditions than previous models. The watch targets outdoor athletes with increased water resistance, increased durability, a compass, and a depth metric for scuba divers. The 7 series t also has a new “action” button for quick use while working out or wearing gloves. The 7 series has more health tracking capabilities and car crash detection technology, which can detect if the wearer was in a severe car crash and automatically call emergency services. The watch will also reportedly get up to 60 hours of battery life thanks to a new software rollout.
Cook unveiled the iPhone 14, which comes in two models: the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus. The Plus will replace the “iPhone 13 mini” model with a bigger model with a 6.7-inch screen. One of the biggest changes is that digital eSIM technology will replace a physical SIM card. However, the 14’s biggest reveal was the phone’s capability to connect to satellites for emergency services in remote areas thanks to a partnership with Globalstar.
The third product reveal was a new generation of AirPods. An Apple H2 chip reportedly provides better sound quality and clarity. Other new features include an improved volume touch control button, longer battery life, a smaller XS ear tip, and an in-case speaker.
The new Apple Watch will cost at least $799 and will be available in stores on about Sept. 23. Preorders will be available next Wednesday. The iPhone 14 will start at $799 and the Plus will start at $899. Preorders start on Sept 9, but the Plus won’t ship until October. The new AirPods Pro cost $249 and will go on sale on Sept 23.
The full launch video can be seen here.