UPDATED 15:15 EDT / SEPTEMBER 14 2021

APPS

Apple unveils iPhone 13, new iPad, iPad mini and bigger Apple Watch

Apple Inc. unveiled today during its “California Streaming” press event a series of much-anticipated new products, including the new iPhone 13 lineup, a new iPad and iPad mini, and the Apple Watch Series 7.

The company also touted its upcoming A15 Bionic chip, which will be featured in the iPhone 13 models and the new iPad mini. It will be used to power the machine learning capabilities on the devices as well as powerful camera features for the phones.

The iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini

The new iPhone 13 has been redesigned with a sleek aluminum frame and 6.1-inch and 5.4-inch displays for the standard and mini form factors using Ceramic Shield to protect against spills.

“Both phones have beautiful designs, industry-leading performance, and advanced camera systems with impressive computational photography features, all with incredible durability, water resistance, and a big jump in battery life to ensure customers can depend on their iPhone when they need it,” said Greg “Joz” Joswiak, Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide marketing.

The camera bar on the front has been reduced in order to offer more screen space. Apple said the bar is about 20% smaller. The display itself is a Super Retina XDR and is 28% brighter with 1200 nits of peak brightness for enhanced readability in daylight.

The rear camera has been changed to a diagonally arranged lens system featuring a wide camera and an ultrawide camera. Both of them work together so images can be captured with more detail in dark areas of photos and videos with less noise.

The phones will be running on new A15 Bionic chips, with a six-core central processing unit and a four-core graphics processing unit. It will also feature a new 16-core Neural Engine capable of 15.8 trillion operations per second to enable machine learning processes on the phone, allowing for high-quality photography and the use of the new dual-camera system.

To take advantage of this, Apple showed off a few features added with iOS 15’s Cinematic Mode such as “Rack Focus.” Using this capability, users can focus on nearby or far away subjects on command while engaged in filmmaking, like professionals, as the form records in Dolby Vision HDR using advanced machine learning as the phone tracks using depth-of-view. They can also use editing capabilities that allow refocusing on the phone itself — even after the recording is completed.

The phones have enhanced battery life that extends one to two hours over previous models, Apple said.

Customers can pre-order the phones beginning Sept. 17, and they will begin shipping Sept. 24. The iPhone 13 mini starts at $699 and the iPhone 13 starts at $799.

iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max

The iPhone 13 Pro lineup has a larger display with the Pro and Pro Max with 6.1-inch and 6.7-inch sizes and the same Super Retina XDR display of the iPhone 13, but with a technology Apple calls ProMotion. It also features a third rear telephoto camera.

ProMotion supports an adaptive refresh rate for the display from 10Hz to 120Hz. It enables fast frame rates when animations when needed and preserves battery life when nothing is happening. As a result, things look smooth and crisp when there’s a lot going on, and the phone is calm when there’s little happening.

“The Super Retina XDR display with ProMotion is our best display ever; it intelligently responds to the content on your screen, offers fantastic graphics performance, and is perfect for any viewing experience,” said Joswiak.

Just like the iPhone 13, the iPhone 13 Max includes the same two wide and ultra-wide cameras but adds a telephoto lens that offers up to three times optical zoom.

Pricing for the iPhone 13 Pro starts at $999 and the Pro Max at $1,099, with availability beginning Sept. 24.

New iPad and iPad mini

The new generation iPad and iPad mini were announced by Apple and feature Retina displays, at 10.2 inches and 8.2 inches respectively.

The iPad features an A13 Bionic chip and the iPad mini will feature the new A15 Bionic chip.

Both feature advanced cameras and a system called Center Stage to take advantage of them. Center Stage comes from iPad Pro and uses the Neural Engine and enables more engaging video calls that cause the camera’s pan and zoom to follow people to keep them in view. It will also cause it to zoom out when more people enter view.

The iPad mini received Touch ID on its top right side. This enables users to unlock their device biometrically, log in to apps or use Apple Pay with their finger.

The mini also features a USB-C port for charging and high-speed wired connectivity. As for wireless connectivity, the iPad mini has both a WiFi and 5G model available.

Pricing for the iPad starts at $329. Pricing for the iPad mini starts at $499 ($649 with 5G), with availability beginning Sept. 24 for both.

Apple Watch Series 7

The new Apple Watch Series 7 now has a reengineered display, more screen area and thinner borders. Apple has also refined the on-screen display and watch faces to take advantage of the larger screen area for greater readability and ease of use.

The new Series 7 offers approximately 20% more screen area and the borders are about 40% smaller than those on the Apple Watch Series 6.

The Series 7 has an 18-hour battery life on a single charge and a 33% faster charging compared with the previous generation thanks to its magnetic fast-charging USB-C cable.

With the upcoming WatchOS 8, which will become available on Sept. 20, a number of new fitness features have been added by Apple. These features include cycling workout detection, auto-pause and enhanced fall detection.

The Apple Watch Series 7 is priced at $399, with availability beginning later this fall.

Images: Apple

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