Ap­ple un­veils its latest and great­est

iPhone, big­ger iPad, re­vamped TV box fea­tured items

The Progress-Index - At Home - - HOME TECH -

SAN FRAN­CISCO — Ap­ple is tak­ing a small step with its latest iPhone while try­ing to make a big­ger leap in other key mar­kets with its largest iPad yet and a long-awaited over­haul of its online video box for TVs.

The trend-set­ting com­pany un­veiled its new­est twists on tech­nol­ogy Wed­nes­day in San Fran­cisco be­fore the usual packed house that turned out for a glimpse at a prod­uct line that Ap­ple is count­ing on to re­tain its faith­ful dis­ci­ples and win new con­verts.

As ex­pected, Ap­ple's next iPhone is mak­ing rel­a­tively mi­nor im­prove­ments to the model last year that gen­er­ated more ex­cite­ment be­cause it boasted a larger screen. The iPhone 6S hews to Ap­ple's re­cent strat­egy of re­leas­ing ma­jor re­designs of its top-selling de­vice ev­ery other year.

The iPhone 6S will go on sale on Sept. 25 in the U.S., China, the U.K. and nine other coun­tries at prices start­ing at $200 with a com­mit­ment to a two-year wire­less con­tract. Pre-or­ders be­gin start­ing Satur­day.

Per­haps just as im­por­tantly to the mil­lions of con­sumers who still own older iPhone mod­els with smaller screens, the price for last year's iPhone 6 model is

drop­ping to $99 with a two-year con­tract. Some an­a­lysts be­lieve that price re­duc­tion will un­leash a wave of sales to con­sumers who stayed on the side­lines be­cause they didn’t want to spend so much for the big­ger screen.

A new tablet com­ing out in Novem­ber may also give more peo­ple a rea­son to buy an iPad. Called the iPad Pro, it fea­tures a nearly 13-inch, di­ag­o­nal screen and is de­signed to ap­peal to cor­po­rate cus­tomers and gov­ern­ment agen­cies.

Since re­leas­ing its orig­i­nal iPad, Ap­ple Inc. has con­fined the screen size to 10 inches and fo­cused on selling the tablet to con­sumers. But iPad sales have been fall­ing since 2013 amid com­pe­ti­tion from lower-priced tablets and con­sumers’ re­luc­tance to up­grade from ear­lier mod­els.

Prices for the iPad Pro will range from $799 to more than $1,000. A sty­lus for the tablet will cost $100 and a de­tach­able key­board will sell for an ad­di­tional $170.

The re­designed Ap­ple TV box re­lies on a sys­tem that re­volves around apps and voice con­trols. Its price will start at $150, more ex­pen­sive than com­pet­ing de­vices from com­peti­tors such as Roku, Ama­zon’s Fire TV and Google’s Chrome­cast that al­ready have been of­fer­ing some of the same fea­tures that will now be avail­able in the new Ap­ple TV box.

In­vestors seemed unim­pressed with Ap­ple’s line-up. The com­pany’s stock dipped $1.20 to $111.10 in Wed­nes­day’s late af­ter­noon trad­ing them, leav­ing the shares 17 per­cent be­low their peak reached ear­lier this year.

(AP PHOTO/ERIC RISBERG)

Phil Schiller, Ap­ple’s se­nior vice pres­i­dent of world­wide mar­ket­ing, talks about the cam­era fea­tures of the new iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus dur­ing the Ap­ple event at the Bill Graham Civic Au­di­to­rium in San Fran­cisco, Wed­nes­day, Sept. 9, 2015.

(AP PHOTO/ERIC RISBERG)

Ap­ple CEO Tim Cook dis­cusses the new iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus dur­ing the Ap­ple event at the Bill Graham Civic Au­di­to­rium in San Fran­cisco, Wed­nes­day, Sept. 9, 2015.

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