San Francisco Chronicle

New iPhone line, watch feature larger displays

- By Sophia Kunthara

Apple introduced three new iPhones and a health-focused Apple Watch on Wednesday as it bet that larger displays would continue to lure customers, even for pricey products.

The company debuted the iPhoneXS, iPhoneXS Max and iPhoneXR at the Steve Jobs Theater on Apple’s new campus in Cupertino, setting a higher price for the most expensive iPhone available. The iPhoneXS Max, which has a 6.5inch display and the largest battery Apple has ever put in a phone, starts at $1,099.

The iPhoneXS and iPhoneXS Max are waterproof and have enhanced graphics, an improved camera, and longer battery life. The iPhoneXR, which starts at $749, has a larger display than the iPhone 8 Plus and also has an improved camera. The iPhone XS — like its predecesso­r, the iPhone X — starts at $999. The XS and the XS Max are available to order on Friday. They’ll ship a week later, on Sept 21. The XR is available to order on Oct. 19.

The Apple Watch, which was first introduced in 2014, comes with a revamped design — a curved screen that’s 30 percent larger than previous models and thinner than the Series 3. The speaker is also 50 percent louder, and the microphone is moved to the other side of the device, away from the speaker, to make calls clearer.

But the biggest leap for the new watch is its focus on health.

The Series 4 Apple Watch, which Chief Operating Officer Jeff Williams called “the ultimate guardian for your health,” has the ability to detect when a person falls and gives them the option to call for help. If the person is immobile for one minute, the watch will automatica­lly call for help and include location informatio­n.

“Getting FDA approval for the health features on the new watch underlines Apple’s leadership in wristworn tech.” Ben Wood, chief of research at CCS Insight

The watch, which starts at $399, also has three new heart-focused features: a notificati­on if a person’s heart rate is too low, if there is an irregular rhythm indicating atrial fibrillati­on and an electrocar­diogram.

The Series 4 watch’s EKG is the first electrocar­diogram available over the counter and directly to customers, Williams said. The watch is also able to send heart health informatio­n directly to a wearer’s doctor.

The company received approval from the Food and Drug Administra­tion, and the president of the American Heart Associatio­n was on stage at the Steve Jobs Theater in Cupertino on Wednesday to voice his support for the product.

Ben Wood, chief of research at CCS Insight, wrote in a note after the event that it would be interestin­g to see how the health care industry reacts to the developmen­ts in the Series 4 watch.

“Getting FDA approval for the health features on the new watch underlines Apple’s leadership in wrist-worn tech,” Wood wrote. “It’s an arduous process that no other consumer wearable company has successful­ly navigated.”

“Apple is having to make a careful trade-off with these new products. It’s acutely aware that customers are holding onto their iPhones longer than ever, but by increasing prices and selling services such as Apple Music, apps and iCloud storage the company can keep revenue flowing in during the lifetime of a device,” Wood wrote. “Add the Apple Watch into the mix, and you can see how Apple is achieving by far and away the highest margins in the industry while rivals are seeing their profits squeezed harder than ever.”

Apple stock fell 1 percent Wednesday. The company tends to trade lower on the days it announces new products. It’s up 31 percent in 2018, however, and its valuation remains well above a trillion dollars — a mark the company hit for the first time last month.

The Associated Press contribute­d to this report.

 ?? Jim Wilson / New York Times ?? Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president for marketing, shows off the new iPhone XS and iPhoneXS Max at the debut event.
Jim Wilson / New York Times Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president for marketing, shows off the new iPhone XS and iPhoneXS Max at the debut event.
 ?? Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press ?? Apple CEO Tim Cook (left) and soccer player Alex Morgan discuss the new Apple Watch 4 that has a focus on health.
Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press Apple CEO Tim Cook (left) and soccer player Alex Morgan discuss the new Apple Watch 4 that has a focus on health.
 ?? David Paul Morris / Bloomberg ?? Attendees arrive for the event debuting Apple’s new iPhone line and watch that focuses on health at the company’s Steve Jobs Theater in Cupertino.
David Paul Morris / Bloomberg Attendees arrive for the event debuting Apple’s new iPhone line and watch that focuses on health at the company’s Steve Jobs Theater in Cupertino.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA