Sep 122012

With the usual stratospherically high expectations, Apple’s CEO Tim Cook once again took to the stage today to kick things off. Here is a summary of the event, including the announcement of the Apple iPhone 5:

  • Update on Apple’s retail stores and sales:
    • Apple now has 380 stores in 12 countries, promising “best buying experience and the best customer service on the planet.”
    • 83 million visitors to its stores last year alone
    • 7 million Mountain Lion upgrades downloaded since launch this summer
    • Apple notebooks have held #1 position in US for the past three months
    • 17 million iPads sold last quarter bringing total since lauch of first iPad to 84 million
    • 400 million iOS devices sold across the world up to June 2012
    • 700,000 apps now in Apple App Store
  • Apple iPhone 5 announced:
    • Made entirely of aluminium and glass
    • 18% thinner than the iPhone 4 and billed as the thinnest smartphone at 7.6 millimeters
    • 112 grams (or 20% lighter than iPhone 4)
    • 4-inch 16:9 1136 x 640 pixel Retina Display (326ppi)
    • Display sports integrated touch sensors, effectively eliminating a layer and making it thinner and sharper
    • Apps such iWork updated for iPhone 5 and the new display. Apps that are not updated will be centered on the display with black borders on sides.
    • LTE connectivity as well as HSPA+ and DC-HSDPA
    • In Canada, iPhone 5 will run on Bell, Fido, Koodo, Rogers, TELUS, Virgin Mobile
    • Wi-Fi upgraded to support dual-band 2.4GHz and 5GHz on 802.11n
    • New Apple A6 offering twice the processor and GPU performance compared to A5. Also 22% smaller
    • Improved battery – Promised to last longer than that of iPhone 4S: 8 hours for LTE, 8 hours for 3G talk time, or 10 hours for Wi-Fi or video
    • Improved camera with 8MP sensor, f/2.4 aperture, and 25% smaller than that of iPhone 4S
    • New camera promises faster image capture, improved low-light performance, new Panormama mode
    • HD FaceTime camera
    • Facetime over cellular networks now possible (as long as carriers support it)
    • Improved speakers are 20% smaller
    • New connector called Lightning. 80% smaller, all-digital, and reversible
    • Adapter for 30-pin accessories will be available to enable to work with the iPhone 5
    • Available in 16GB, 32GB, or 64GB variants
    • Available in black or white
    • New version of iOS
  • iOS 6:
    • Updated version of Maps now include search engine for points of interest, turn-by-turn directions, and 3D mode
    • Updated Notification Center
    • Improved Safari includes fullscreen mode and tab syncing with other devices (such as your desktop)
    • New PassBook to manage items like tickets, boarding passes, cards, etc
    • Upgrade for qualifying devices will start September 19th
  • iTunes
    • Revamped iOS design as 66% of downloads now come from iOS
    • Facebook integration
    • New version of PC version includes revamped navigation and new mini player
    • New feature: “Up Next” lets you queue up songs
    • New version to be available in late October
  • iPods
    • 350 million iPods sold to date
    • New iPod nano with larger 2.5-inch display (supporting multitouch), new Home button, FM tuner, video support and Lightning connector. Available in 7 colours
    • iPod nano includes Bluetooth for the first time
    • Revamped iPod touch: anodized aluminium, 4-inch display like on iPhone 5, 5MP camera with 1080p video capture. Powered by Apple’s A5 chip. 6.1 millimeters thick and 88 grams. 5 colours.
    • iPod touch also comes with “the loop,” essentially a strap
    • Improved wireless capabilities: 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0
    • iPod touch now comes with Siri and AirPlay mirroring
  • New EarPod headphones
    • Three years in the making
    • Designed to fit everyone’s ears
    • Promise to direct sound right into the ear.
    • Standalone accessory available as of today. Will also be included with iPhone 5, new iPod touch, and new iPod nano

The iPhone 5 will sell for the same price as the iPhone 4S did before today. The 16GB model will sell for US$199, the 32GB for US$299, and 64GB model for US$399 (with contract of course). The 16GB iPhone 4S will drop to US$99 and iPhone 4 to US$0 again with contract.

Pre-orders will begin on September 14th with shipments to Canada and the U.S. (and a few other countries) to start on September 21st. By December, the Apple iPhone 5 will be available in 100 countries through 240 carriers.

The iPod shuffle will sell for US$49 and the new 16GB iPod nano for US$149. The 4th generation iPod touch will continue to be offered for US$199 for the 16GB model and US$249 for the 32GB model. The new iPod touch will come with 32GB or 64GB and sell for US$299 and US$399 respectively. They will be available in October.

And that’s a wrap… I guess we now wait for a second Apple event in October for the iPod mini…


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