After months and months and months of rumors, Apple finally showed off its new iPhone models at its event in Cupertino today. While many of the big new features had already been predicted, we now have all those small details that you really want to know.
Not much of a surprise here, Apple’s new flagship smartphone will be called the iPhone 5S. The 5S is Apple’s new top of the line option and comes complete with some seriously upgraded internal hardware as well some totally new features.
One of the killer new features of the iPhone 5S is its built-in fingerprint sensor, which is located right within the phone’s home button. The sensor is called Touch ID and it can be used for both instantly unlocking your phone as well as for authorizing iTunes purchases.
No longer will you have to enter your 4 digit passcode every time you grab your phone, now you can simply put your thumb over the home button and it will be unlocked almost instantly. Touch ID supports multiple fingers and continues to learn your fingerprint as you use it, making it improve over time. For those concerned about Apple having access to their fingerprints, the company says that your fingerprint information will solely be stored deep within the phone’s A7 chip, it won’t exist on Apple’s network or iCloud or anywhere else.
Another big area of improvement, as per usual, is the 5S’s camera. The new camera features dual-LED flash, which uses two differently colored flashes to produce one perfectly lit image. The camera’s sensor itself has also been significantly upgraded to take better looking pictures, and now with the new “burst mode”, users will be able to hold down the shutter button and take pictures at 10 frames per second until the point where they let go. The phone will then automatically present you with the best picture you took so you don’t have to scroll through them all, however, that option’s still there for those that want it.
As for video, you’ll now be able to record 120 FPS slo-mo video, so you can record and watch all your shenanigans in super slow detail.
The third new feature is Apple’s new M7 chip. This is a new chip that exists in the phone designed solely for health applications. The chip is constantly analyzing data using its accelerometer, gyroscope, and compass, and all this information can then be used by developers to help create better and more detailed health apps. Apple announced a new app by Nike called “Nike+ Move” that will take advantage of this new tech and use it to help monitor your body and health.
Besides these features, expect the 5S to bring substantial upgrades to both computing and graphics performance over the iPhone 5. All intense tech lingo aside, the phone packs a new 64 bit chip and much improved graphics that give the phone a great overall performance boost. Apple showed off the new power with Infinity Blade 3, the final title in the popular iOS trilogy and a iPhone 5S launch title. Infinity Blade 3 will reportedly run 5x faster on the 5S than it will on the 5. All of this and the phone will still sport the same 10 hour of LTE talk-time battery life as the iPhone 5.
The phone will be available in silver, gold, and space gray, and will launch on September 20th, with pre-orders beginning the 13th. It will cost $199 for the 16GB model, $299 for the 32GB, and $399 for the 64GB, all on a two year contract.
Besides the 5S, we also finally got to hear all about the mysterious iPhone 5C for the first time. To put it simply, the 5C is pretty much identical to the iPhone 5, which has now been discontinued and replaced by the 5C, only with a few improvements/changes.
The device features a plastic case that comes in five colors, and boy do we mean COLORS. Each color is vibrant and significantly different from the next, with the varieties consisting of green, white, blue, salmon, and yellow. Apple ensures to make it clear, however, that just because it’s plastic, doesn’t make it bad. “iPhone 5C is beautifully, unapologetically plastic.”
Besides the change in casing, the 5C has a slightly bigger battery, a slightly better front facing camera, and some more network bands. For the most part, however, it’s the same iPhone 5 you know and love only much more cheerful looking.
The 5C will cost $99 for the 16GB option or $199 for the 32GB option, both on a two-year contract. Off contract, the 16GB model will sell for $549. It will also be released on September 20th.
While those were the two biggest parts of the show, there is also some other news. Apple confirmed that iOS 7 will launch for all users on September 18th, and that iWork for iOS will now also be made free. This means that once iOS 7 launches, users will be able to download iPhoto, iMovie, Pages, Numbers, and Keynote, all for free.
Apple will start selling its own official cases for both the 5S and the 5C. The 5S case will come in yellow, beige, blue, brown, black, and red, while the 5C case, will come in white, salmon, yellow, blue, green, and black.
The SC case will also have hole on its back so you can still marvel at the “C” in your iPhone 5C. 5S cases will cost $39 while 5C cases will cost $29.
That’s pretty much all you need to know out of Apple’s event today. If you want to read more about the phones, or if you’re ready to pre-order one, you can visit Apple’s website which has already been updated with tons of information and pictures for your viewing pleasure.
Do you hear that? That’s the sweet silence of rumors going away following a new product announcement. Enjoy it while it lasts.