Apple hosted what may be termed as the most awaited product launch ever today. In its luxurious Fifth Avenue Retail store, Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook, finally pulled the curtain back on the much rumored and anticipated iPhone 5.
The new iPhone is possibly the single most anticipated gadget ever released by the tech giant, and speculation, regarding what its new features and design would be, has been rampant over the last few months. Everyone from the smallest tech blog on the web to Gene Munster of Piper Jaffrays have had their opinion of just how popular this new iPhone would be.
Here is what the event entailed today:
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First, CEO Tim Cook took the stage to talk about Apple’s incredible achievements in the mobile and technology markets. He pointed out that Apple has 380 retail stores now operating in 13 countries, and these stores host approximately 1 million visitors per day. He also touted Apple’s program, Mountain Lion, which sold 7 million units in just 2 months.
Following the first two announcements, Cook spoke of just how relevant Apple apps are to their users, as 90% of the more than 700,000 apps in the app store, are downloaded each month.
The most awaited, and possibly the most advanced gadget that Apple has introduced today, would be the sixth generation iPhone 5. Apple’s iPhone has dominated the smartphone market, almost since inception. The new model promises to continue this trend as it sports many upgraded features.
The iPhone 5 has a 4″ screen, which is larger than any of its predecessors. It also touts 4G LTE capabilities, along with Apple’s A6 chip. It has a computer which is 2x faster than the previous model, as well as improved graphics capabilities (also 2x faster). The battery life has been increased, which will undoubtedly prove to be a major plus, as many iPhone users who were surveyed, indicated that this would be something they wish would happen in the new model. Along with all of these features, Apple has increased the speed of the 8 megapixel camera and included wideband audio capabilities.
The iPhone 5 differs from its predecessors in several ways. The first difference of note is that it is much thinner and lighter than before. The new model is 7.6 mm thick, which is 18% thinner than its previous compadre.
The pricing of the iPhone 5 will follow the same guidelines as the iPhone 4S, which we highlighted in our earlier article.
Apple also introduced a new connector, designed to partner with the iPhone 5. This connector, which was developed to replace its predecessor, the Thunderbolt, is dubbed the Lightning connector. It is 80% smaller and much more durable than its ancestor from 2003. However, the cost of this connector is labeled at $29.
The iPod touch was another long awaited device this year. The new models specifications and features were highlighted in our article earlier today, which you can read here. They included multiple color choices, a slimmer design, and a much lighter weight over its predecessors.
The iPod nano was also revealed today, and its features are similar to the iPod Touch as far as changes go. Apple re-engineered this iPod and gave it a slimmer design and slightly larger screen, along with a “home” button to make navigation easier.
iOS 6, Apple’s new mobile operating system was announced, and will be available for download, beginning on September 19th. It will be available for iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, and the new iPhone 5.
EarPods and iTunes
The last two items of note from todays product launch are the new EarPods, which are Apple’s custom built earphones, and the iTunes 11 and iCloud releases. The new earphones will feature a “natural fit and increased durability”, as well as improved sound quality. iTunes 11 was also launched today, and carries iCloud compatibility with it. Along with the new release, Apple has improved Ping, its social network created just for iTunes, by allowing users to share photos directly with listeners, and also improving its search features.
The Wrap Up
Today’s event, while important for Apple, did not bring many surprises to the table for its customers. The obvious star of the show was the iPhone 5, as expected, with the iPod Touch and other products taking a less than center stage position. However, though the surprises were limited, Apple is sure to generate much needed revenue, and possibly even reclaim its number one spot in the smartphone market from rival handset maker, Samsung. It will be interesting to see what Apple does in the near future, as there are still rumors of an iPad mini and Apple TV floating around out there. Apple has planted the seeds of the next quarter’s financial success with the launch of its new flagship product, the iPhone 5.