On Wednesday, September 9, Apple celebrated its KeyNote 2020 conference, in which it announced its next novelties for various products, including a new version of Apple TV, improved versions of its iPhone 6 and 6 plus phones or a new more powerful iPad Pro with a screen that has nothing to envy to any computer laptop. Below is a list of the main novelties:
1. A new version of Apple TV that could revolutionize television
Apple has already announced that it will launch fourth generation Apple TV at the end of October. The new device will have a new operating system called "tvOS", 2GB of RAM, an A8 processor (much faster than the A5 of its predecessor) and a memory of between 32 and 64 GB, in addition to including a remote control that works by touch and that it can perform a double function as a video game controller. The new device, which will have its own specialized section in the App Store, is compatible with any TV with HDMI connection, and allows you to view TV shows and movies, run applications and even play video games. Besides, the integration with Siri allows the user to search for content by voice; and its Universal search system allows you to search multiple services at the same time, such as iTunes, Netflix, Hulu, HBO and Showtime. To complete the batch, one of the latest innovations is the inclusion of a new application called Apple Music that will bring Apple's music service to televisions. And it will accept the connection of third-party accessories, such as keyboards or other video game controllers, by Bluetooth 4.0.
According to the company's announcement, the new device will go on sale simultaneously in 80 countries at a price of about $ 149 for the 32GB version and $ 199 for the 64GB version; and the launch is expected to later expand to other countries, reaching 100 by the end of the year. However, the company will continue to sell its third-generation Apple TV directly from Apple's online store for $ 69.
Finally, Apple has also announced that is working in a television service for streaming, which will have about 25 channels and will cost around $ 30 or $ 40 a month. To do this, the company is negotiating with several content providers, including ABC, CBS, Fox, Disney, Viacom and Discovery. The launch of the new service is scheduled for 2020 and, according to some rumors, it could also include original content.
2. A new iPad Pro, bigger and more powerful
Apple will release in November a new tablet with a more professional approach. The new iPad Pro incorporates a 64-bit A9x processor, 1.9 times faster than its predecessor and with a graphics performance 80% higher than that of notebook PCs. In addition, it has a 12.9 inch retina display, with a resolution of 2,732 × 2,048, but it is almost as thin as the iPad Air 2 (6.9mm vs. 6.1mm for the iPad Air2) and weighs only 713g (the same as the original iPad). It should also be noted that the increase in screen size and other improvements have not negatively affected the battery life: about 10 hours.
However, the great novelty is the possibility of connecting two new accessories:
- A smart keyboard made of fabric, which can be rolled up and unrolled and which, once unfolded, attaches magnetically to a smart connector, called the Smart Connector. The connector, located on the side of the iPad Pro, is made up of three small circles and allows power and data to pass through.
- A pencil, Apple Pencil, With which you can write or draw directly on the screen, in the style of a graphic tablet like those used by designers. To do this, the iPad Pro incorporates a series of sensors that detect the position and inclination of the pen and the pressure exerted on the screen. The higher the pressure, the greater the thickness of the drawn lines and vice versa. In addition, you can create shadow strokes, thanks to the signals emitted by two points located at the tip of the pencil. It should be noted its enormous precision, capable of satisfying, without a doubt, the most demanding professional graphic designers. The stylus has its own built-in battery, which can be charged by connecting it to the iPad Pro with a power adapter.
Plus, you'll have new productivity apps, including Microsoft Office and Adobe apps, tailored to work with the pen. And it will offer the possibility of dividing the screen to be able to work with two applications on the screen at the same time.
Of course, being an Apple product, the design could not be missing. The new tablet will be available in silver, gold and metallic gray; and its price will range from $ 799 for the 32GB version to $ 1,079 for the 128GB version compatible with LTE. The accessories, as always, will also be sold separately: the keyboard will cost 169 dollars and the pen 99 dollars.
3. New straps and a new operating system for the Apple Watch
Apple's smart watch already has new operating system: WatchOS2. The update, available from mid-September, is completely free and, among other things, brings more home screens, improves communication options and offers faster and more powerful applications.
However, not all applications are prepared for this new operating system yet, so some of the most common ones are missing. In any case, this is something that usually happens when a new operating system of any type comes out and little by little updates will come out for all of them. Especially now that Apple has opened its engine, digital crown and microphone, among other things, to developers, allowing them to access them as native apps. This will undoubtedly allow them to considerably improve the user experience.
WatchOS2 too includes WiFi connection and better integration with Siri, in addition to allowing you to respond to emails with audio or text, directly from the user's wrist. It is very useful to be able to read the messages, emails and notifications of our iPhone on the clock screen, since it avoids us having to continually remove the mobile from the bag or any other place where we usually carry it.
It also includes a night mode, which rotates the screen when the device is resting horizontally on a surface, and in which the digital crown and the side button act like the buttons on an alarm clock.
In addition, the watch will have a wide variety of interchangeable straps, of different colors and materials, some of them developed by third parties, such as Hermes.
However, there are still many things that it cannot do, for example, we cannot store a contact in our phonebook, or edit the transcribed messages from the audio and it does not have GPS; For all that and other things you need an iPhone, so, at least for the moment, it works as a simple complement to it. Plus the battery barely lasts a day. The question is whether its functionality really makes up for its high price.
A second generation Apple Watch is expected in mid to late 2020. It remains to be seen to what extent the new watch solves or not some of these shortcomings.
4. New iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 plus
Apple has renewed its latest mobile phone models, the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus and, although at first glance the new versions seem the same as their predecessors, include some interesting hardware changes. Among them, the use of a new 7000 series aluminum alloy in the housings to make them more robust, improved cameras, faster Touch ID and WiFi or a pressure-sensitive multi-touch screen. The latter has allowed it to incorporate the so-called 3D Touch, already present in the Apple Watch, MacBook and MacBook Pro lines; that detects the pressure we exert on the phone screen and shows us different menus or information based on it. At the moment, it is only compatible with Apple applications, but it is expected that independent application developers will incorporate it into their apps soon, opening a whole range of possibilities.
Another novelty is the function "Live Photos", Which allows 1.5 seconds of video to be recorded around a photo in order to give it movement if the user wishes. This is something that Nokia phones have offered for years, but that the iPhone did not have. Combined with the new 12 megapixel camera, it is a major improvement in graphics capabilities.
Regarding the operating system, Apple has released an update for iOS 9, iOS 9.0.1, which solves most of the problems detected in the previous version and has claimed to be working on version 9.1 that will be released at the end of the year with new emojis and more problems solved.
Lastly, the iPhone 6S is much faster than its predecessor, thanks to its 2 GB of RAM (1 GB more than the iPhone 6) and its new A9 processor, which, according to the company, is 70% faster.
On an aesthetic level there will be a new variant in pink.
Yesterday, just three days after its launch, the company announced a sales record of its new models iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus: with more than 13 million units sold. The new models will go on sale in another 40 countries, including Spain, from Friday, October 9.
5. New Apple iPad Mini 4
Despite not having much media coverage, Apple has also updated the iPad Mini. The fourth generation of this iPad model has a best processor, achieving a significant increase in both graphic (60%) and calculation (30%) performance. It also incorporates camera improvements. In short, few changes, but they considerably improve the user experience.
The other iPads have not undergone any renovations, but they have reduced their price.
And also… An autonomous car?
Apple has not commented on the matter, but there have been rumors for some time that the tech giant could be working on the development of an autonomous vehicle as part of a project called Titan. In mid-August 2020, The Guardian revealed that the car could already be in the testing phase, upon being aware that members of the company had contacted GoMentum Station, a former naval base with an area of about 8,500 m2 and which has several kilometers of roads and buildings; and that in recent years has become a high-security testing area for autonomous vehicles. Other companies such as Mercedes-Benz and Honda have also performed their tests at these facilities, located in San Francisco, California. According The Guardian GoMentum Station staff have not been able to reveal the reason for the meeting due to a confidentiality clause signed with Apple, but they have confirmed that the conversation has taken place.
On the other hand, over the last year, Apple has hired personnel related to the automotive sectorfrom companies such as Tesla Motors or Mercedes-Benz, or from battery manufacturers such as A123 Systems; and Apple CEO Tim Cook has held various meetings with experts and executives from some of the leading companies in the industry.
The latest news, published in mid-September, also by The Guardian, points out that on August 17, Apple held a meeting of about an hour with various experts in autonomous vehicles and officials from the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), which regulates autonomous vehicles in this state.
Other tech giants, like Google or Uber, are seriously investing in the field of autonomous vehicles and Google has already announced that it will bring its autonomous vehicle to market in 2020. If the rumors are correct, Apple's new autonomous car could be ready in 2020.
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