CAL­I­FOR­NIA:

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An AirPower mat is seen charg­ing mul­ti­ple de­vices dur­ing a me­dia event at Ap­ple’s new head­quar­ters in Cu­per­tino, Cal­i­for­nia yes­ter­day. Ap­ple Inc on Tues­day rolled out its much-an­tic­i­pated iPhone X, a glass and stain­less steel de­vice with an edge-to-edge dis­play that Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Tim Cook called “the big­gest leap for­ward since the orig­i­nal iPhone.”-

Ap­ple Inc on Tues­day rolled out its much-an­tic­i­pated iPhone X, a glass and stain­less steel de­vice with an edge-to-edge dis­play that Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Tim Cook called “the big­gest leap for­ward since the orig­i­nal iPhone.”

The launch con­tained few sur­prises, with leaked de­tails on the phone and other prod­ucts in­clud­ing an up­dated Ap­ple Watch prov­ing largely ac­cu­rate. But the iPhone X’s $999 price still raised eye­brows, and its Nov 3 ship date prompted ques­tions about pos­si­ble sup­ply con­straints ahead of the hol­i­day sea­son. In­vestors and fans have viewed the 10th-an­niver­sary iPhone launch as an op­por­tu­nity for Ap­ple to re­fresh a smart­phone lineup that had lagged the com­pe­ti­tion in new features. Last year the com­pany’s rev­enue de­clined when many con­sumers re­jected the iPhone 7 as be­ing too sim­i­lar to the iPhone 6. The new Ap­ple Watch for the first time will be able to make calls and ac­cess the in­ter­net with­out the cus­tomer car­ry­ing an iPhone-a ma­jor up­grade that one an­a­lyst pre­dicted would more than dou­ble watch sales. The iPhone X has wire­less charg­ing, an in­frared cam­era and hard­ware for fa­cial recog­ni­tion, which re­places the fin­ger­print sen­sor for un­lock­ing the phone. The home but­ton is also gone, and users in­stead tap the de­vice to wake it up.

Ap­ple nor­mally ships new prod­ucts within a week or two of an­nounc­ing them, though the com­pany said the later date was con­sis­tent with ear­lier guid­ance to in­vestors. “It’s great to have a prod­uct but we’d have liked it sooner rather than later, more like the be­gin­ning of Oc­to­ber or midOc­to­ber,” said Kim For­rest, se­nior eq­uity re­search an­a­lyst at Fort Pitt Cap­i­tal Group in Pitts­burgh. Ap­ple shares closed down 0.4 per­cent. They had traded as much as 1 per­cent higher dur­ing the launch event be­fore re­vers­ing course. The shares are up al­most 40 per­cent on the year. Tim Ghriskey, chief in­vest­ment of­fi­cer of So­laris As­set Man­age­ment in New York, said he was not wor­ried about the ship date and liked the new phones features, but also flagged a lack of sur­prises.

“It’s sell on the news,” he said. “They didn’t talk about the evo­lu­tion of Ap­ple be­yond the iPhone and into ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence.” The screen on the iPhone X is about the size of the cur­rent iPhone 7 plus, though the phone is smaller. It features richer col­ors thanks to a new screen technology called OLED that other ven­dors are also rolling out. But in an em­bar­rass­ing moment for Ap­ple Se­nior Vice Pres­i­dent Craig Fed­erighi, the face ID un­lock­ing did not work on his first at­tempt dur­ing the on-stage pre­sen­ta­tion.

Phones at many prices

Ap­ple ex­ec­u­tives also stressed the phone’s ca­pa­bil­i­ties in aug­mented re­al­ity, in which dig­i­tal images are over­laid on the real world. But their re­marks sug­gested that the phone does not have the full panoply of 3D-sen­sor chips that some had ex­pected. Wire­less car­ri­ers in the United States, whose fierce bat­tle for cus­tomers could tempt them into re­new­ing the prac­tice of sub­si­diz­ing phones, im­me­di­ately be­gan to of­fer dis­counts. T-Mo­bile US Inc said cus­tomers on a pay­ment plan can trade in their iPhone 6 or newer and re­ceive up to $300 off over 24 months.

Sprint Corp CEO Marcelo Claure promised in a tweet: “Find a bet­ter monthly price & we’ll credit the dif­fer­ence via pre­paid card.” AT&T Inc and Ver­i­zon Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Inc, the dom­i­nant mo­bile car­ri­ers in the United States, have not yet dis­closed their pric­ing plans.

Ap­ple also in­tro­duced the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, which re­sem­ble the iPhone 7 line but have a glass back for wire­less charg­ing. The com­pany said it was work­ing on a new de­vice, called the AirPower, that would charge all newer Ap­ple prod­ucts. The wire­less charg­ing uses a stan­dard called Qi, also used by Sam­sung Elec­tron­ics Co Ltd, which will likely so­lid­ify that technology as the in­dus­try stan­dard. The new phones all fea­ture Ap­ple’s first pro­pri­etary graph­ics pro­ces­sor, which pro­vides greater speed, im­proved cam­eras and some features for aug­mented re­al­ity apps.

The com­pany had pre­vi­ously used graph­ics chips from Imag­i­na­tion Tech­nolo­gies Group Plc, which put it­self up for sale ear­lier this year af­ter Ap­ple said it would make its own technology.

Ap­ple is mov­ing to de­sign more of the in­ter­nal com­po­nents of the iPhone, squeez­ing some sup­pli­ers but giv­ing Ap­ple con­trol. The cheap­est of the iPhone 8 mod­els have 64 gi­ga­bytes of mem­ory, up from 32 gi­ga­bytes in pre­vi­ous mod­els, and will sell for $699 and $799. Ap­ple also noted that for bud­get-con­scious shop­pers, there is now a $349 iPhone SE, sim­i­lar to the iPhone 5.

The bump-up in mem­ory for the new phones should help sup­pli­ers of mem­ory chips, and Ap­ple is now an­gling to own a piece of the mem­ory-chip busi­ness be­ing sold by Toshiba Corp

The new Se­ries 3 watch will cost $399 and sup­port a range of third-party apps. Ap­ple has never re­leased num­bers on watch sales, but an­a­lyst Gene Mun­ster with Loup Ven­tures forecast the com­pany would sell 26 mil­lion in 2018. Also fea­tured at the launch event was an up­graded Ap­ple TV that will sup­port the high-res­o­lu­tion dis­play known as 4K and will fea­ture more pro­gram­ming op­tions as Ap­ple steps up ef­forts to cut con­tent deals and pro­duce its own shows.

Flashy new cam­pus

Cook opened the event at the Steve Jobs Au­di­to­rium on Ap­ple’s new cam­pus with a trib­ute to com­pany co-founder and for­mer CEO Jobs, who died in 2011. The Ap­ple build­ing it­self was con­sid­ered to be Jobs’ fi­nal prod­uct, and Cook spent a few min­utes boast­ing about the de­sign, en­ergy-sav­ing features and pub­lic spa­ces at the new cam­pus, in­clud­ing a flag­ship Ap­ple Store. The the­ater, never be­fore open to the pub­lic, features an ex­pan­sive glass-en­closed lobby, with two mas­sive white stone stair­cases lead­ing down to the au­di­to­rium. Inside, the decor is sim­i­lar to that of Ap­ple’s stores, with hard maple floor­ing and tan leather seats. — Reuters

CU­PER­TINO: Ap­ple CEO Tim Cook, right, and Jonathan Ive, Chief De­sign Of­fi­cer shows the new iPhone X in the show­room af­ter the new prod­uct an­nounce­ment at the Steve Jobs The­ater on the new Ap­ple cam­pus on Tues­day in Cu­per­tino, Calif. — AP photos

CU­PER­TINO: Ap­ple CEO Tim Cook shows new Ap­ple Watch Se­ries 3 prod­ucts at the Steve Jobs The­ater on the new Ap­ple cam­pus on Tues­day.

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