With a slew of new iPhones, new Apple Watches, a new Apple TV and an impressive new iPad, Stylist’s associate editor Gemma Crisp reports from the much-anticipated Apple event in San Francisco - while promising to be good for Santa…
It’s not every day I fly over 8,500 kilometres to spend less than 48 hours in San Francisco. But when the world’s biggest company invites you to do just that, you know it’s going to be worth it. Because Apple never does things by halves – proven by the fact that they took over the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium (the concert venue famous for hosting big-name artists from Janis Joplin to Lady Gaga) for an entire month before yesterday’s event, even going as far as giving the interior a fresh coat of paint.
During the two hour keynote presentation, Apple CEO Tim Cook and his merry men rolled out new product after new product, interspersed with updates on existing favourites. First up were new additions to the Apple Watch collection including gold and rose gold anodised aluminum watch cases for the Apple Watch Sport as well as a Product (Red) Apple Watch. Then, in a style coup that had the fashion flock salivating, he announced an Apple Watch Hermès collection which will be available from 5 October. With prices starting from £1,000, I suggest placing it strategically at the top of your list for Santa.
Then there was the biggie – all 12.9 inches of it (stop sniggering). Described as “the biggest news in iPad since the iPad” first launched five years ago, the brand new iPad Pro is like a souped-up high-performance car which practically purrs with power. It’s 22 times faster than the original iPad and is faster than 80% of portable PCs yet is only 6.9mm thick and weighs 712 grams. It has a 10-hour battery life and, like any good performance car, features a four-speaker audio system which balances itself depending on how you hold it – perfect for watching the new Fassbender film or Rihanna’s latest music video when teamed with the retina display which has a whopping 5.6 million pixels (the most ever in an iOS device).
And it comes with its own accessories – the Apple Pencil (a stylus to you and me) which can be used to annotate attachments and make notes as well as for graphic design and illustration, plus a separate Smart Keyboard for those who aren’t fans of the software keyboard. You’ll have to wait until November for this beast to land in stores but that just gives you extra time to behave yourself for Father Christmas.
To keep you occupied until then, the rebooted Apple TV will be available at the end of October, bringing with it your old friend, Siri, who has taken up residence in the Apple TV remote which now has a touch surface for easy on-screen navigation. Couch potatoes will rejoice as Siri does all the hard work to help choose the best movie, TV show, game, album or app as she sifts through filter after filter to find exactly what you’re in the mood for via iTunes, Netflix, Hulu, HBO and Showtime as well as the dedicated Apple TV app store.
And if you really, really can’t wait til Christmas for a new tech toy, put your name down for the new iPhone 6S or 6S Plus which has added a new colour – rose gold – to its existing range. Available for pre-order as of 12 September and in store 25 September, the improvements include a 12MP camera (formerly 8MP), a new 5MP FaceTime camera (all the better to selfie with), ‘Live Photo’ which creates 12MP GIFs by capturing 1.5 seconds on either side of the photo as it’s taken, and 3D Touch, allowing you to quickly preview content on your phone such as messages, photos, emails and web links using different amounts of pressure.
With all the impressive additions to the Apple clan, we won’t blame you if your Christmas stocking is bulging with sleek white boxes come 25 December – just remember who trekked all the way to San Francisco if you ever decide to regift... especially if it happens to be an Apple Watch Hermès.