Apple has launched the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, along with the Apple Watch Series 2, a Super Mario game and a controversial set of wireless headphones called AirPods- removing the headphone jack in the process.
Since the launch, people have criticised the introduction of new expensive AirPods, which need to be purchases separately at extra cost, which could be easily lost or prove to be a choking hazard for children and animals.
Both the camera and speakers will be “hugely advanced”, Apple chief executive Tim Cook confirmed at a live conference.
The phone will also have better graphics and a more responsive home button, while battery life has been improved.
Storage capacity has been upgraded to start at 32GB, and users who want more can choose between 128GB and 256GB.
Following a leak on Twitter earlier in the day, most of the announcements were not too much of a surprise to fans.
At the launch, Mr Cook told the audience the iPhone had become the “industry gold standard” and the smartphone “by which all others are measured”.
The new camera – particularly a second ‘telephoto’ lens on the larger iPhone 7 Plus – will enable people to create much better, sharper images, he said.
The removal of the headphone jack will perhaps be the biggest change for consumers.
New devices will come with earphones that connect to the iPhone’s Lightning connection, currently used for charging and data transfer.
Adaptors will also be included to give traditional users the opportunity to connect with existing headphones.
However, those who want to go wireless will be able to do so using “breakthrough” wireless ‘AirPods’, which are priced at $159 (£119) and will be available from October.
Apple Watch 2- swim proof and works with Pokemon Go!
Apple also used the event to reveal its next-generation wearable, the Apple Watch 2.
While the first Apple Watch was “splash” proof, the second edition Series 2 is “swim” proof – completely water resistant to a depth of 50 meters, in both swimming pools and open water.
In order to waterproof it, Apple said it had to close up the ports. This meant the firm had to redesign the speaker so that it has a mechanism that pushes out water.
On the inside, the Watch Series two is powered by the new the S2 chip with a dual-core processor that’s up to 50% faster, with a new GPU that offers up to twice the graphics performance, meaning more graphically intensive games, such as NightSky, can run on the Watch, with five times to level of detail.
The Watch Series 2 also features a second-generation display that’s two times brighter at 1000 nits, which Apple said will make all the difference when wearers are outside in the sun.
To ensure workouts are more accurate and the Watch Series 2 has built-in GPS, which connects to satellites instantly, and even means that a route map will show your varying speeds.
“With built-in GPS, Apple Watch Series 2 records precise distance, pace and speed for outdoor workouts such as walking, running or cycling, without needing to take an iPhone,” said Apple.
“Users can begin an outdoor workout immediately as Apple WatchSeries 2 uses Wi-Fi, GPS and locally stored satellite data to quickly identify their location.
“On completion of an outdoor workout, view a route map that shows variations in speed in the Activity app on iPhone. Whether running, going for a swim or walking between meetings, the Activity app on Apple Watch Series 2 counts all daily activity.”
Apple Watch Series 2 will come in aluminum, stainless steel, and white ceramic.
It will cost $369 and will go on sale alongside a new and improved original Apple Watch,which will feature the same S2 processor as it’s newer sibling and be renamed Apple Watch Series 1, costing a much lower $269.
You will be able to pre-order both these devices on 9 Septmeber, with them going on sale the following week.
Apple will run on Apple’s WatchOS 2 operating system, which will feature the new Pokemon GO app, made specially for the wearable.
John Hanke, CEO of Niantic Labs said on stage. “It’s certainly been a hectic summer for us!
“Pokemon GO has been download 500m times since July around the world with users walking 4.6Billion KM while playing the game. Combine Pokemon gameplay while you’re on the go, such as doing a run.”
When you approach a Pokemon, the watch will notify you. It also notifies you when Pokegyms are near by, so you never miss a Pokestop.
As part of the Watch Series 2 announcement, Apple also unveiled a new partnership with Nike.
“We’ve worked with Nike for over a decade, and we couldn’t be more excited today to announce Apple Watch Nike+,” Apple said.
“The Apple Watch Nike+ “isn’t just a watch, it’s your perfect running partner. We think it delivers the best running experience out there.”
The Nike+ will be available to pre-order from 13 September, going on sale the following week.
Mario finally comes to mobile
Buried in the conference was another major development from a technological icon. Nintendo will finally launch its iconic character Mario on smartphones starting with a running game for the iPhone called Super Mario Run.
Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto, father of Mario, took to the stage at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco alongside Apple’s chief executive Tim Cook to announce the coming game.
Cook said: “Since the launch of the App Store someone has been missing on the App Store, but I’m glad to say, he’s arrived now.”
Miyamoto said: “The magic of Mario is anyone can pick up and start playing, and now we’ve made it even easier.”
Super Mario Run is game in the vein of popular endless runners such as Subway Surfers and others. It has a two modes, a more classic Mario run-to-the-flag mode and a battle mode, where players can take on friends and others across the internet.
Miyamoto said: “You can even play it one handed, while you’re holding onto the handle on the subway, while eating a hamburger, or even an Apple.
“I want everyone around the world to enjoy Mario, and they’ll be able to enjoy it on iOS first.”