Ev­ery­thing an­nounced at Ap­ple’s Septem­ber event

Ap­ple re­vealed three new iPhones along with re­lease dates for iOS 12 and macOS Mo­jave. JA­SON CROSS re­ports

Tech Advisor - - Contents -

It’s that time of year again. Time for Ap­ple to un­veil its lat­est iPhones and get us all ex­cited about the steady march of tech­no­log­i­cal progress.

This year, Ap­ple had plenty to cover. There are three new iPhones, all of them with the pow­er­ful A12 Bionic pro­ces­sor and TrueDepth cam­era and Face ID sys­tem that was pre­vi­ously ex­clu­sive to the £1,000

iPhone X. There’s also a hot new Ap­ple Watch Se­ries 4. Over the fol­low­ing pages we round up all the ma­jor an­nounce­ments made at its Septem­ber event.

Ap­ple Watch Se­ries 4

When Ap­ple in­tro­duced the new Se­ries 4 Ap­ple Watch, it said: “Ev­ery­thing about it has been re­designed and re-en­gi­neered.” And truly, this is the first Ap­ple Watch to have ma­jor, ob­vi­ous de­sign changes rather than the mi­nor tweaks we’ve seen in pre­vi­ous mod­els.

To start with, it’s slightly larger – the sizes are up to 40- and 44mm (from 38- and 42mm). How­ever, it’s thin­ner, so the to­tal vol­ume is less than the Se­ries 3. They fea­ture new dis­plays with curved cor­ners,

pushed out to the edge of the case with very slim bezels. Ap­ple says the smaller of the two screens is 35 per­cent larger than pre­vi­ously, while the big­ger watch is 32 per­cent larger.

As you can see in the above im­age, there are a host of new watch com­pli­ca­tions that show more de­tail, and new up­dated watch faces, in­clud­ing one that can be cus­tom­ized with up to eight com­pli­ca­tions.

The dig­i­tal crown now has hap­tic feed­back, the speaker is 50 per­cent louder, and the back is sap­phire crys­tal and ce­ramic to al­low ra­dio waves to pass through for bet­ter wire­less re­cep­tion.

Pow­er­ing the Ap­ple Watch Se­ries 4 is a new S4 pro­ces­sor that in­cludes a dual-core 64-bit CPU and

new Ap­ple-de­signed GPU, which Ap­ple says makes it up to twice as fast. There’s a new sec­ond-gen­er­a­tion ac­celerom­e­ter with twice the dynamic range, that takes sam­ples over eight times as fast and can de­tect up to 32g forces. This al­lows the watch to de­tect ac­ci­den­tal falls, and can au­to­mat­i­cally mes­sage your emer­gency con­tact when it de­tects one.

The new op­ti­cal heart-rate sen­sor is im­proved, and can de­tect low heart-rate prob­lems and de­tect atrial fib­ril­la­tion (Afib). Ap­ple doesn’t prom­ise that it will de­tect ev­ery Afib event, but it’s still go­ing to help a lot of peo­ple.

Ap­ple added a new elec­tric heart-rate sen­sor, de­signed in-house, with elec­trodes on the back of

the watch and on the dig­i­tal crown. You can take a 30-sec­ond elec­tro­car­dio­gram (ECG) and get a clas­si­fi­ca­tion from the watch. The data is saved in the Health app, and you can even ex­port a PDF for your doc­tor.

Ap­ple prom­ises the Se­ries 4 will have the same 18-hour bat­tery life as the Se­ries 3, but out­door ac­tiv­ity track­ing bat­tery life has been im­proved.

Prices for the Se­ries 4 start at £399, or £499 for the cel­lu­lar ver­sion, with the alu­minium ver­sion avail­able in Sil­ver, Gold, and Space Grey. Stain­less steel mod­els are avail­able in Pol­ished, Black, and Gold. It’s avail­able now, but the Se­ries 3 will con­tinue to be sold start­ing at £279. And it’s com­pat­i­ble with all your ex­ist­ing bands, too.

iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max

Tim Cook in­tro­duced the new iPhone XS by say­ing it is “by far the most ad­vanced iPhone we have ever cre­ated”. One would cer­tainly hope that they are not get­ting less ad­vanced with time.

The iPhone XS is very sim­i­lar to last year’s iPhone X, with a screen size of 5.8 inches and a res­o­lu­tion of 2,436x1,125. The dis­play now has a 60 per­cent greater dynamic range, how­ever, and bet­ter stereo sound. It is again avail­able in Sil­ver and Space Grey, with a new Gold colour added this year.

It is joined by a larger-sized si­b­ling, the iPhone XS Max. The phone it­self is roughly the size of the iPhone 8 Plus, but with a big 6.5in edge-to-edge dis­play. It has a res­o­lu­tion of 2,688x1,242, match­ing the 5.8in model’s

458 pix­els per inch. Both phones are now rated for IP68 dust and wa­ter pro­tec­tion, bet­ter than the iPhone X or iPhone 8. Ap­ple says it’s rated for up to 30 min­utes in up to two me­tres of wa­ter, and it was tested in all sorts of flu­ids, in­clud­ing chlo­ri­nated- and salt wa­ter.

Face ID has been im­proved with a faster se­cure en­clave and faster pro­cess­ing al­go­rithms, so it un­locks your phone even faster than be­fore.

The XS has a new dual-cam­era sys­tem, with a new sen­sor for big­ger, deeper pix­els on the 12Mp wide-an­gle cam­era, and a new True Tone flash. There’s new im­age-pro­cess­ing soft­ware that com­bines the CPU and neu­ral en­gine to per­form over a tril­lion op­er­a­tions on ev­ery photo, and im­proves por­trait mode. The TrueDepth mod­ule on the front has a new 7Mp sen­sor

that is twice as fast as that in the iPhone X. The cam­era now has a new Smart HDR mode that takes a bunch of ex­po­sures and com­bines them in­tel­li­gently for more de­tail in dark ar­eas and bet­ter high­lights in way more chal­leng­ing sit­u­a­tions. You can now ad­just the depth of por­trait mode pho­tos from f/1.4 to f/16 af­ter you take the shot, too. In videos, you can now record stereo sound for the first time on an iPhone.

The iPhone XS Max has the big­gest bat­tery ever in an iPhone, and Ap­ple claims it lasts up to 90 min­utes longer than any of its pre­vi­ous hand­sets.

The ra­dios have been im­proved, with Gi­ga­bit LTE and more sup­ported bands for world­wide roam­ing. Ap­ple is us­ing an in­ter­nal eSIM and stan­dard mi­cro-SIM for dual-SIM sup­port. In China, Ap­ple will sell a model

with a two-sided SIM tray for two phys­i­cal SIMs, since they can’t use eSIMs there.

The iPhone XS will come in 64-, 256-, and 512GB ca­pac­i­ties, with prices start­ing at £999. The iPhone XS Max will cost £100 more, with the en­try-level model cost­ing £1,099. They are both avail­able to buy now.

A12 Bionic

Pow­er­ing the new iPhones is the A12 Bionic chip. Ap­ple says it is the in­dus­try’s first 7nm chip, and is “by far the smartest and most pow­er­ful chip in a smart­phone”. It’s 6.9 bil­lion tran­sis­tors big, with a new Ap­ple-de­signed 6-core CPU. The two high­per­for­mance cores are up to 15 per­cent faster than the A11 Bionic, but use up to 40 per­cent less power.

The four high-ef­fi­ciency cores use up to 50 per­cent less power. The graph­ics pro­ces­sor, also Ap­ple-de­signed, is claimed to be up to 50 per­cent faster.

Ap­ple has se­ri­ously beefed up its Neu­ral En­gine. This ma­chine-learn­ing op­ti­mized part of the chip was a dual-core de­sign in the A11, and could process up to 600 bil­lion op­er­a­tions per sec­ond. In the A12, the Neu­ral En­gine is a new eight-core de­sign and can process up to five tril­lion op­er­a­tions per sec­ond. De­vel­op­ers can now use the Neu­ral En­gine with CoreML, which lets them per­form ma­chine learn­ing op­er­a­tions up to nine times faster with as lit­tle as 10 per­cent of the power.

The big­gest im­prove­ment in the A12 is to the Neu­ral En­gine, which has gone from 600 bil­lion op­er­a­tions per

sec­ond in the A11 to over 5 tril­lion in the A12. Ap­ple says the A12 im­proves ev­ery as­pect of the sprawl­ing sys­tem-on-chip, in­clud­ing im­proved im­age pro­cess­ing and a stor­age con­troller than can ad­dress up to 512GB. With it, apps launch up to 30 per­cent faster.

iPhone XR

In ad­di­tion to the high-end iPhone XS and XS Max, Ap­ple in­tro­duced a more af­ford­able iPhone XR. It looks sim­i­lar to the iPhone X, with an edge-to-edge 6.1in dis­play and a notch for the TrueDepth mod­ule (the same one as on the new iPhone XS and XS Max). It’s IP67 wa­ter and dust cer­ti­fied.

The dis­play is a new LCD, which Ap­ple has dubbed a “Liq­uid Retina” dis­play. It has a lower res­o­lu­tion than the iPhone XS – 1,792x828 – but it still has Tap-to-wake, True Tone, wide colour range, and 120Hz touch sens­ing.

The iPhone XR doesn’t have 3D Touch, but it pro­vides the same fea­tures with hap­tic feed­back, which Ap­ple calls “Hap­tic Touch”. It’s sim­i­lar to the MacBook touch­pad.

You still get the same A12 Bionic pro­ces­sor, and even though the iPhone XR has only a sin­gle rear cam­era, it is iden­ti­cal to the im­proved wide-an­gle cam­era in the XS and XS Max. And now, for the first time, you can take Por­trait Mode shots with the iPhone XR, even though it only has a sin­gle rear cam­era. Ap­ple

claims the iPhone XR will last up to an hour and a half longer than the iPhone 8 Plus.

The iPhone XR come in six colours and will ship in 64-, 128-, and 256GB ca­pac­i­ties, start­ing at £749. It will be avail­able for pre-or­der on 19 Oc­to­ber and will ship on 26 Oc­to­ber.

Re­lease dates for iOS 12, watchOS 5, tvOS 12, and macOS Mo­jave iOS 12: Out now

iOS 12 is the next ma­jor ver­sion of Ap­ple’s op­er­at­ing sys­tem for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. iOS 12 in­clude im­prove­ments to Maps, Siri, Face­Time, CarPlay,

and the Pho­tos app, as well as re­vamped Stocks, News, Voice Memos, and Ap­ple Books apps. iOS 12’s Mes­sages in­cludes new An­i­moji char­ac­ters and Me­moji, and there’s also a new AR-based Mea­sure app. The up­date is avail­able directly on your iOS de­vice via the Set­tings app. Or you can con­nect your de­vice to your Mac and up­grade through iTunes.

watchOS 5: Out now

WatchOS 5 was pre­viewed at WWDC in June. New fea­tures in­clude Walkie-Talkie, a Pod­casts app, and Raise to Speak with Siri. Im­prove­ments have been made to ac­tiv­ity track­ing and work­out apps, and to No­ti­fi­ca­tions. There are also sev­eral new fea­tures for the new Ap­ple Watch Se­ries 4. You can up­grade to watchOS 5 through the Watch app on your iPhone.

tvOS 5: Out now

The up­grade for tvOS has Dolby Atmos, which was an­nounced at WWDC in June. Dolby Atmos is Dolby’s 3D ob­ject-based sound for­mat. The op­er­at­ing sys­tem also has Zero Sign-on and sup­port for new Earth Aeri­als.

macOS Mo­jave: Out now

macOS Mo­jave 10.14 is the ma­jor Mac up­grade to macOS High Sierra. New fea­tures in­clude a Dark Mode user in­ter­face; Fin­der en­hance­ments that in­clude a new Gallery View, Quick Ac­tions, and Desk­top Stacks; Siri im­prove­ments; en­hanced pass­word sup­port, and more. To up­grade to Mo­jave, launch the App Store app and look for the up­grade in the Up­dates sec­tion.

The new Se­ries 4 has a much larger dis­play, but the case is only about 2mm big­ger, and thin­ner

The larger dis­play means room for more com­pli­ca­tions with more de­tail, if you want them

The im­proved ac­celerom­e­ter can de­tect falls and au­to­mat­i­cally no­tify emer­gency con­tacts

The Ap­ple Watch Se­ries 4 has a new elec­tri­cal heart sen­sor that can per­form a ba­sic form of elec­tro­car­dio­gram (ECG)

The iPhone XS Max is just like the iPhone XS, only big­ger, with a higher-res screen and big­ger bat­tery

The iPhone XS Max is about the size of an iPhone 8 Plus, but with a much larger dis­play

The new iPhones fea­ture the most ad­vanced cam­eras Ap­ple has yet pro­duced, both hard­ware and soft­ware

You’ll be able to ad­just the depth ef­fect of Por­trait Mode shots even af­ter you take it

The A12 Bionic has faster and more en­ergy-ef­fi­cient pro­ces­sor cores and a much more pow­er­ful graph­ics pro­ces­sor

The iPhone XS and XS Max may look just like the iPhone X, but they’re full of im­prove­ments

Ap­ple man­aged to make an LCD screen go edge-to-edge like the OLED on the iPhone X, but the res­o­lu­tion is lower

The iPhone XR is hon­estly bet­ter than the iPhone X in most ways, and starts at £749

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