Up-to-date iPhones for everyone
In the iPhone SE, Apple is offering, for the first time, the latest smartphone technology at an entry-level price. Like the iPhone 6s/6s Plus, the iPhone SE features an A9 chip, a 12-megapixel iSight camera with 1.22µ pixels, Live Photos, and 4K video recording.
The oldest iPhone now available is the iPhone 6/6 Plus, released in September 2014. This new lineup shows that Apple is committed to offering the latest technology, regardless of the screen size. This is a big deal.
Apple Watch advances, slowly
With Apple Watches going for as much as $17,000, it’s probably a good idea for Cupertino not to change the design of the device all that often. On Monday, we got our first hint that the second-generation Apple Watch, expected to launch this fall, could look similar to the current model.
Apple announced a number of new Apple Watch bands for the year-old wearable device on Monday. Dropping the price on the entry-level model to $299 (from $349) was also a nice touch and should bring more users in.
iPads are higher quality ... and higher priced
As has often been discussed, iPad sales haven’t exactly been setting the world on fire. To address this, Apple has shifted to a higher pricing strategy with its iPad line.
The newly revealed 9.7-inch iPad Pro starts at $599, which is $100 more than previous models.
Apple is also offering 256GB iPads for the first time. These begin at $899 for the Wi-Fi-only 9.7-inch iPad Pro and run as high as $1,229 for the Wi-Fi + Cellular 12.9-inch iPad Pro.
Want to pay even more? Both iPad Pros support the $99 Apple Pencil. You can also purchase an extra Smart Keyboard for each.
For those looking to save money, Apple has dropped the price on the iPad Air 2. The 16GB entry-level model is now $399, a drop of $100.
Apple is serious about privacy
Tim Cook made it clear on Monday that customer privacy is a top priority for Apple — even if that means going against the U.S. government.
In opening the media event, the Apple CEO noted: “We believe strongly that we have a responsibility to help you protect your data and protect your privacy. We owe it to our customers and we owe it to our country. This is an issue that affects all of us and we will not shrink from our responsibility.”
Commenting that the iPhone is “a deeply personal device,” Cook said, “we need to decide as a nation how much power the government should have over our data and over our privacy.”
This isn’t the first time Cook has addressed customer privacy. However, to do so to open a media event is significant.
They are also serious about our health
Besides privacy, Apple also highlighted its commitment to helping us live healthier lives. The new CareKit framework is designed to build apps that empower people to take an active role in their care. Just like ResearchKit, CareKit is open source.
We expect to hear a lot more about Apple’s healthcare commitment later this year when the second Apple Watch arrives alongside the “iPhone 7.”
The next big Apple event is the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June. We are likely to see some Mac upgrades announced. Throughout the summer, expect to hear more about “iOS 10” and the next version of OS X. Come September, a pair of new iPhones are set to be announced.
What did you think of Apple’s latest media event?