|Steve Jobs – 2007 Keynote|
Yesterday Apple had their annual iPhone event to announce their latest and greatest products. Included in that announcement were the iPhone 6S, iPad Pro, and the Siri Enabled AppleTV. Like all things Apple, they look great and of course Apple put on some great Demo’s, but the question is are they worth purchasing? Or for many of us, if you already own a current version of any of these devices is it worth upgrading? If you are looking for a breakdown on the tech specs, head over to Apple. This is a review from a practical point of view on the features and it they are things the average user will take advantage of.
AppleWatch and AppleWatch OS2
Apple kicked things off by talking about their watch and the amazing new possibilities that it offered and some brand new style options that you could take advantage of. First off the OS improvements were very cool, but sadly the medical demo they showed had a very limited appeal to the majority of people. It is cool for doctors to be able to get real time updates is nice but the ability for the average user to send their medical stats to their doctor seems to have appeal only for hypochondriacs. I am sure the OS allows for so much more, but this demo didn’t really show a lot of what the watch can do for the average user. Secondly the styling options. Apple announced new style options from the face to new bands and they seemed to go over very well with the audience. The biggest applause came with the announcement of Apple finally offering a Product(RED) style for the watch which contributes money from the purchase to help fight HIV/AIDS in Africa. The watch is still trying to find its place in our tech filled worlds and I feel like as soon as more people start implementing smart home products it will gain traction.
iPad Pro and Apple Pencil
The iPad Pro is just awesome! It is big it is powerful and it is designed as a portable creative workstation from the ground up. This is obviously Apple’s answer to the touch screen laptop’s that have been in and out of popularity for the last 5-10 years. I realize the iPad has been out for that long, but try as it might it never really hit this specific market. Now with the Pro model users can finally have a mobile creative platform that doesn’t require a portable office. Of course Apple’s accessories designed specifically for the Pro are what really make this possible. The two announced during the event were the Keyboard case and the Apple Pencil. While neither of these are an original idea they are incredibly innovative. To be fair, the keyboard is very, very similar to Microsoft’s Type Cover, but it is nice that Apple finally has an official external keyboard. The big thing here really is the Pencil. The pencil at first glance is just a stylus like you would get with a wacom tablet or something like that, but the difference is in how it works with the iPad. Sadly I haven’t had a chance to use it yet, but if it works as well and as smoothly as the demo video shows, then this is something every artist needs.
iPhone 6S and 6S Plus
Apple claims the new iPhone is completely new from the ground up, and this might be true. Upgraded cameras, software, and a brand new processor are all things that make this new version of the iPhone appealing but the things that really got me excited: 4K video and Living Photos (or as many on the internet are calling them, Harry Potter Pictures). Both of these things will really change how the iPhone is used. The phone was already a powerful camera (Video and still) but now it will really be able to shoot amazing images at amazing detail. My two biggest complaints with the iPhone are that it already suffers from disappointing battery life and it doesn’t seem like that was fixed, especially considering all of the graphics heavy work they are marketing it for. The other thing is that we aren’t getting high a capacity storage size option. If we are expected to really take advantage of 4K video than why not give us a 256gb option or more? Despite those two issues, this is a phone I would upgrade to if I was at the right point in my contract. Guess it is either pay full price or wait for the iPhone 7.
Siri Enabled AppleTV
I go back and forth on if this is a revolutionary update to the AppleTV. The key factor which either makes this amazing or not is Siri. To be frank this version doesn’t do anything new that isn’t already out there. Amazon Fire TV has had a voice search option for a while, but like I said it isn’t Siri. Siri’s search ability appears to be truly intelligent and intuitive searching, not just a glorified google video search. If it really is as good and quick as it appears to be, than this is something that people should be excited about. I am just not sure if it is enough to replace my old Apple TV or my Amazon Fire TV. As more reviews and hands on reactions come out, maybe there will be something else about it that sets it apart. We will have to wait and see.