Apple held their annual product keynote for iPhone this morning at the Steve Jobs Theatre in their Cupertino Campus, California. Not one, not two, but THREE iPhones were unveiled at the keynote – iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and the more affordable iPhone XR. The new iPhones have gotten hardware upgrades and software enhancements. However, what excites me the most during the keynote were the new features on the all-new Apple Watch Series 4.
The Apple Watch Series 4 finally got a bit of a “facelift” since its launch in 2015. I love the original design of the Apple Watch. The new apple watch now comes with a screen that is over 30% bigger and a redesigned user interface. With a new FDA approved ECG function added into such a pretty watch, I can see more elders in my circle wearing an Apple Watch on their wrist very soon. Apple Watch is an essential health tracking and prevention device that everybody needs.
What’s even better is that the Apple Watch Series 4 now comes in glossy chrome gold finishing for the stainless steel variant, previously made with 18K gold for the Apple Watch Edition variant that cost US$10,000. Now you can pay less to get that colour on your wrist.
Here is a summary of features on the iPhones and Apple Watch from the keynote, Singapore prices and availability are included as well.
Apple Watch Series 4
Beginning Friday, 14 September 2018, the Apple Watch Series 4 (GPS) will be available to order in Singapore. Pricing starts from S$599. Apple Watch Series 4 (GPS + Cellular) starts at S$749 and is exclusive to Singtel. The collection of Apple Watch Series 4 will start from 21 September 2018. Series 3 will be available at the new starting price of S$419. That’s a steal!
- Apple Watch Series 4 is now bigger with two new sizes, 40mm and 44mm. Old watchbands will still be compatible with the new Apple Watch.
- New watch faces from the endlessly customisable
Infograph face to the Breathe face, where the animation is timed around a deep breath.
- A suite of motion faces, including Vapor, Liquid Metal, Fire and Water react uniquely with the curved edges of the case.
- The speaker is 50 per cent louder, optimised for phone calls, Siri and new Walkie-Talkie feature to communicate between Apple Watch users.
- New S4 chip with a custom 64-bit dual-core processor, delivering twice the speed while maintaining the same all-day battery life of up to 18 hours.
- The back of Apple Watch Series 4 is composed of a gorgeous black ceramic and sapphire crystal, allowing radio waves to easily pass through the front and back for better cellular service.
- Digital Crown now includes haptic feedback, offering a more mechanical and responsive feel through the sensation of incremental clicks.
- User interface is optimised for the larger display, allowing for app icons and fonts that are bigger and easier to read, while complications have been beautifully enhanced to be more precise and informative.
- Take an ECG reading right from the wrist using the new ECG app, which takes advantage of the electrodes built into the Digital Crown and new electrical heart rate sensor in the back crystal.
- All recordings, their associated classifications and any noted symptoms are stored in the Health app in a PDF that can be shared with physicians.
- Intermittently analyses heart rhythms in the background and sends a notification if an irregular heart rhythm suggestive of AFib is detected. It can also alert the user if the heart rate exceeds or falls below a specified threshold.
- Apple Watch sends the user an alert after a fall is detected, which can be dismissed or used to initiate a call to emergency services. If Apple Watch senses immobility for 60 seconds after the notification, it will automatically call emergency services and send a message along with location to emergency contacts.
iPhone XS & iPhone XS Max
The 5.8″ iPhone XS and 6.5″ iPhone XS Max feature stunning Super Retina displays, a faster and improved dual camera system that offers breakthrough photo and video features with the new A12 Bionic chip. It is the first 7-nanometer chip to be used in a smartphone.
iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max will be available for pre-order in Singapore beginning Friday, 14 September 2018 and in stores beginning Friday, 21 September 2018. iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max will be available in 64GB, 256GB and 512GB capacity models in space grey, silver and a new gold finish starting at S$1,649 and S$1,799, respectively. The most expensive variant will be the 512GB iPhone XS Max prices at S$2349.
- The main difference between iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max are the screen sizes, as well as the battery life with iPhone XS Max having 1 hour more battery life than iPhone XS.
- Super Retina displays with a custom OLED design support Dolby Vision and HDR10 and have iOS system-wide colour management for the best colour accuracy in the industry.
- The front and back glass design features the most durable glass ever in a smartphone with improved scratch resistance, while the glass back enables faster wireless charging.
- A new level of splash and water resistance of IP68 for up to 2 meters for 30 minutes and protect against everyday spills including coffee, tea and soda.
- A12 Bionic features a six-core fusion architecture with two performance cores that are up to 15 per cent faster, four efficiency cores that are up to 50 per cent more efficient, a four-core GPU that is up to 50 per cent faster, powerful Apple-designed Image Signal Processor (ISP), a video encoder and more.
- Next-generation Neural Engine is built for advanced machine learning in everything from photography to augmented reality. A new eight-core design allows it to complete up to 5 trillion operations per second compared to 600 billion in A11 Bionic.
- Features 12-megapixel dual camera with dual iOS, delivering faster auto-focus, while larger and deeper pixels improve image fidelity and low-light performance on photos and videos.
- New Smart HDR creating photos with high dynamic range and great image detail, advanced bokeh quality in Portrait mode photos and dynamic depth of field that is user adjustable in the Photos app. Smart HDR creates photos with more highlights and shadow detail.
- New Depth Control allows users to dynamically adjust the depth of field in the Photos app both in real-time preview and post-capture to create portraits with a beautiful background blur.
- iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max deliver the highest quality video capture in a smartphone. Using the four built-in mics, users can also record stereo sound to get the most out of video recordings.
The size of iPhone XR falls between the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max. Unlike the two premium models, the iPhone XR will be using a 6.1″ Liquid Retina LCD Display, with an aluminium chassis and comes in six colour variants which include the stunning and vibrant blue, yellow, coral and (PRODUCT)RED variants.
iPhone XR will be available for pre-order in Singapore beginning Friday, 19 October 2018 and in stores beginning Friday, 26 October 2018. iPhone XR will be available in 64GB, 128GB and 256GB models in white, black, blue, yellow, coral and (PRODUCT)RED starting at S$1,229.
- Like its premium “brothers”, the iPhone XR will be using the same A12 Bionic chip, featuring next-generation Neural Engine, the TrueDepth camera system, Face ID and an advanced camera system.
- The most durable front glass ever in a smartphone is wrapped in an elegantly matched anodised band made from durable 7000 series aerospace-grade aluminium, and the glass back design enables wireless charging.
- iPhone XR features a 12-megapixel f/1.8 aperture wide-angle lens with an all-new sensor, delivering faster auto-focus, while larger and deeper pixels improve image fidelity and low-light performance on photos and videos.
- Improvements to the ISP, Neural Engine and improved software algorithms enable portrait photos with a beautiful bokeh effect.
- Smart HDR brings better highlight and shadow detail across photos.
- iPhone XR only has IP67 water and dust resistance.