San Francisco Apple announced its novelty event on Tuesday as “California Streaming”. Although the group from Cupertino in Silicon Valley is still a hardware company at heart, software services such as the Netflix competitor TV + have been moving more and more into focus for several years.
What did Apple introduce?
It was unusual that Apple boss Tim Cook first presented the program of his streaming service TV + at the start of a hardware event – including a flood of new films and series: a new season of the “Morning Show”, a new Tom Hanks film and a buddy – Comedy with Paul Rudd and Will Ferrell.
The Fitness + home training service, which was introduced in 2020, also came early in the keynote: It is coming to Germany on September 27 and is intended to be more interactive through group workouts with friends.
What innovations were there in the iPhone and the other gadgets?
The iPhone 13 in the mini, standard, Pro and Pro Max versions gets longer battery life and a new wide-angle camera that better depicts the depth of a room – Apple even drove Oscar winner Kathryn Bigelow (Hurt Loosely, Zero Dark Thirty). The iPhone Pro is getting a version with one terabyte of storage space for the first time. The fact that the iPhone Mini continues to exist is at least remarkable: the small version of the Apple smartphone did not sell well.
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In contrast to its competitor Samsung, Apple does not seem to be interested in folding cell phones at first. Instead, the format of the iPad Mini is moving closer to the iPhone. The small tablet fits in one hand and thanks to the new A15 Bionic mobile processor – the same as in the iPhone – should be 80 percent faster than its predecessor and can be used in a variety of ways, from quick photos to office work.
The Apple Watch with a larger, more robust display should become even more of a sports and health tracker and recognize, for example, when the wearer is riding a bicycle. AI algorithms should make cheating impossible: According to Apple, the watch can differentiate between e-bikes and normal bikes.
Before the online event, it was speculated that Apple wanted to radically change the design of the computer clock. It was said that it should be more angular instead of the previously rounded edges. But while the display actually got larger, as previously reported, the watch retained its characteristic shape.
What was missing?
Surprises. Apple can actually keep new products secret better than Samsung or Google, whose events are usually leaked in advance and completely anticipated. But this time Apple was as expected as the competition: For years, a big event – last year the iPhone became 5G-compatible – has been followed by a small one in which the products are slightly refreshed.
What does this mean for Apple?
Not much in the short term. Apple has managed its fan expectations and should benefit from the natural upgrade cycle. “I don’t think iPhone 12 users need an upgrade,” writes Forrester analyst Thomas Husson. “For the majority of Apple users who have older devices, the jump to 5G with the iPhone 13 or the now cheaper iPhone 12 models is a leap forward”.
According to a survey by the investment bank Baird, 45 percent of Apple users in the US have a device that is two years or older – and are therefore potential upgrade customers. Nevertheless, the stock exchange is not exactly enthusiastic: The share, which had already lost more than three percent last Friday, fell by around 1.5 percent.
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