As I sit here listening to my free copy “Songs of Innocence” by U2 I’m pondering all the press releases from Apple this past week. Apple gave us a lot to think about this week as they announced the Apple Watch device. Are you excited about these announcements or do you think that Samsung already stole their thunder?
I’ve seen the videos for the latest product announcements and definitely think the Apple Watch looks like a sexy cool device but the announcement seemed a little late considering Apple seemed to be first to market with the iPhone and all the hoopla surrounding that release. Yet here we are and here is how Apple is positioning this latest product entry,
“Apple Watch introduces a revolutionary design and iOS-based user interface created specifically for a smaller device. Apple Watch features the Digital Crown, an innovative way to scroll, zoom and navigate fluidly, without obstructing the display. The Digital Crown also serves as the Home button and a convenient way to access Siri. The Retina display on Apple Watch features Force Touch, a technology that senses the difference between a tap and a press, providing a new way to quickly and easily access controls within apps. Apple Watch introduces the Taptic Engine and a built-in speaker that together discreetly enable an entirely new vocabulary of alerts and notifications you can both hear and feel. Apple custom-designed its own S1 SiP (System in Package) to miniaturize an entire computer architecture onto a single chip. Apple Watch also features Wi-Fi 802.11b/g and Bluetooth 4.0 to pair seamlessly with your iPhone.”
The Digital Crown feature certainly makes sense to me and does seem like a great idea and the product itself does seem tempting considering it would pair with my iPhone via Bluetooth technology. However the $300+ price tag does seem daunting considering all the money I’ve been putting out upgrading all my devices. Will I spend the money? I guess we’ll see.
The next product announcement is the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus which are touted as the biggest advancements in iPhone history. We’ve got 2 new sizes which are both larger than their predecessor the 5S and a more powerful processor in the A8 chip. The design overall is sexier and for the gadget obsessed will be a must have for the upcoming fall season. Here’s something from the voice of Apple’s PR team,
“For the first time iPhone is available in two new sizes: iPhone 6 features a stunning 4.7-inch Retina HD display with 1334 x 750 resolution, providing 38 percent more viewing area than iPhone 5s, while iPhone 6 Plus features an even bigger 5.5-inch Retina HD display with 1920 x 1080 resolution, providing 88 percent more viewing area and nearly three times the pixels than iPhone 5s. The Retina HD displays offer advanced technologies including higher contrast for deeper blacks and dual-domain pixels for more accurate colours at wider viewing angles.
With second generation 64-bit desktop-class architecture, the all-new A8 chip offers faster performance and is more energy efficient, delivering higher sustained performance with great battery life. With Metal, a new graphics technology in iOS 8, developers can take performance of the A8 chip even further to bring console-class 3D games to iPhone. The A8 chip also includes a new, powerful Apple-designed image signal processor that enables advanced camera and video features.”
For those interested in viewing media and video files on their mobile devices the 5.5 inch 6 Plus will be a must have. Now onto Apple Pay which is another groundbreaking announcement that allows consumers to simply tap their iPhone at retail point of sale debit machines to pay for merchandise using NFC antenna design technology. While this technology may not be readily available in Canada it is sure to follow shortly as retails ramp up to allow easier purchasing.
“Apple Pay supports credit and debit cards from the three major payment networks, American Express, MasterCard and Visa, issued by the most popular banks including Bank of America, Capital One Bank, Chase, Citi and Wells Fargo, representing 83 percent of credit card purchase volume in the US.* In addition to the 258 Apple retail stores in the US, some of the nation’s leading retailers that will support Apple Pay include Bloomingdale’s, Disney Store and Walt Disney World Resort, Duane Reade, Macy’s, McDonald’s, Sephora, Staples, Subway, Walgreens and Whole Foods Market. Apple Watch will also work at the over 220,000 merchant locations across the US that have contactless payment enabled. Apple Pay is also able to make purchases through apps in the App Store.”
Yet another release of iOS the operating system powering Apple mobile devices will be available soon as well. Here we’re looking at a more intuitive user experience along with a new Messages app that has been completely reworked and features the ability to send a video of what you’re seeing at the moment. According to Apple,
“… iOS 8, the biggest release since the launch of the App Store, will be available starting Wednesday, September 17 to iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users as a free software update. iOS 8 delivers a simpler, faster and more intuitive user experience with new Messages and Photos features, predictive typing for Apple’s QuickType keyboard and Family Sharing. iOS 8 also includes the new Health app, giving you a clear overview of your health and fitness data and iCloud Drive, so you can store files and access them from anywhere. With more than 4,000 new APIs, iOS 8 allows developers to further customize the user experience with major extensibility features and robust frameworks such as HealthKit and HomeKit.”
And finally for those of you seeking more information about the free U2 album; if you are already an iTunes Store customer this is simply a free gift courtesy of Apple, Universal Music Group and U2. In fact the album just appeared in iTunes for me. I didn’t have to do a thing! By the way, the new album is great. You should check it out. For more details about the U2 giveaway check this out.