The Apple event introduced a flood of new products. Apple detailed a series of product updates in a 90-minute presentation, including the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro models, the new Apple Watch 8 and two other additions to its smartwatch lineup, and the updated AirPods Pro 2.
That’s a lot of product news for one afternoon, and if there’s one thing that all of the new features have in common, it’s that Apple wants to make its devices as indispensable as ever. The new iPhones and Apple Watches, for example, include crash detection, and your iPhone will be able to send emergency messages via satellite connectivity.
All of these additions come on top of the standard improvements you’d expect from Apple product updates, such as a new chipset for iPhones (or at least the iPhone 14 Pro models), camera improvements across the iPhone lineup, a temperature sensor and low-power mode for the Apple Watch, and improved audio features in the AirPods Pro 2.
Furthermore, Apple introduced an entirely new type of smart watch, the Apple Watch Ultra, aimed at athletes, adventurers, and other people who work and play in harsh environments. The Apple Watch Ultra has an impressive feature set as well as a similarly impressive price tag (though not as high a price as had been rumored.)
Here’s a closer look at everything Apple announced at its Far Out event on September 7th.
iPhone 14: The iPhone 14 isn’t a significant upgrade over the iPhone 13, and that includes the $799 (AU$1,399) price tag. It still uses an A15 system-on-chip, but Apple has opted for a 5-core GPU to improve performance over last year’s phone. While the main camera remains 12MP, there is a larger sensor for better low-light photos.
iPhone 14 Plus: Think of the iPhone 14 Plus as a larger version of the iPhone 14. (or a cheaper, not-as-fully-featured version of the iPhone 14 Pro Max). It has a larger battery and a larger screen than the 6.1-inch iPhone 14, but otherwise the features are the same.
iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max: The iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max aren’t getting the rumoured $100 price increase, which is easily the biggest surprise of the day. They will instead cost $999 (AU$1,749) and $1,099 (AU$1,899), respectively. That’s especially impressive given the 4-nanometer A16 Bionic chipset that powers both phones and significant camera upgrades, including a 48MP main shooter. The notch is also gone, replaced by a Dynamic Island cutout that includes animations and notifications.
Apple Watch 8: The goal of this watch is evolution, not revolution, and it starts at $399 (AU$649) for the GPS-only version. A new temperature sensor is designed to assist women with reproductive planning, and a low-power mode doubles battery life.
Apple Watch SE (2022): Apple appears to be following the iPhone SE’s naming structure by appending a year rather than a number to its lower-cost entry-level device. The new Apple Watch SE includes the crash detection and low-battery mode features found in the Apple Watch 8, as well as a lower starting price of $249 (AU$399).
Apple Watch Ultra: Apple has chosen a different name for its rugged smartwatch than the previously rumoured Apple Watch 8 Pro. However, all of the expected features are present, including a 49mm size and twice the standard battery life. Apple also promises more precise GPS tracking. The Apple Watch Ultra starts at $799 (AU$1,299), which is less than the rumoured $999 price.
AirPods Pro 2: The $249 (AU$399) wireless earbuds get a new H2 chip along with a low-distortion audio driver and custom amplifier for improved sound. You’ll be able to use the front camera on your iPhone to create a customized spatial audio profile, while other features like active noise cancellation have been improved. Battery life is now 6 hours of playback.
Now that the iPhone 14 is here, many people are noticing how similar it looks to the iPhone 13. So, what are the distinctions?
Our iPhone 14 vs iPhone 13 comparison breaks down all of the major upgrades, including the addition of a new model in the line (iPhone 14 Plus), camera improvements like Photonic Engine, and emergency features like satellite connectivity.
Check to see if the iPhone 14 is a worthwhile upgrade for you.
According to managing editor Philip Michaels, the best news from the Apple event is the pricing for the iPhone 14 Pro models. Both phones had previously been rumoured to receive a $100 price increase, but this proved to be false.
Another untrue rumour? The $1,000 Apple Watch Pro price, which turned out to be a $799 Apple Watch Ultra.
Here’s a video look at the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max. Overall, we like the always-on display, new 48MP camera, and Dynamic Island, which replaces the notch. However, there is no longer a SIM card tray.
Although it lacks the flashier Apple Watch Ultra features, Kate Kozuch’s Apple Watch Series 8 hands-on reveals some subtle changes that some users will appreciate. (How about a low-power mode?)
The AirPods Pro 2 may not appear to be a significant update, but in her hands-on with the wireless earbuds, Kate Kozuch discovers that the wireless earbuds pack in a lot of useful improvements while remaining reasonably priced.
The iPhone 14 Plus may lack a “wow” factor, but those who like large screens but don’t want to pay for them will find something appealing here. The details are available in Mark Spoonauer’s iPhone 14 Plus hands-on.
Kate Kozuch goes hands-on with the Apple Watch Ultra, as much as you can test an ultra-durable watch for extreme sports enthusiasts and adventurers in a demo room. Prepare to rethink your assumptions about Apple smartwatches.
Mark Spoonauer joins us from Cupertino with an iPhone 14 Pro Max hands-on. (And, given the similarities between the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max, this can also serve as an iPhone 14 Pro preview.) It’s worth reading this first-hand account because he’s had the opportunity to see the Dynamic Island feature in person.
Looking for more information on the largest Apple Watch ever created? Here’s a rundown of all the Apple Watch Ultra features, including the release date, pricing, and other details.
And that concludes a day that had only a few surprises if you’d been following the rumours.
The Apple Watch 8 Pro will now be known as the Apple Watch Ultra, and while it will be expensive, it will be less than we expected at $799.
The iPhone 14 Max will be known as the iPhone 14 Plus.
Apple has not changed the prices of the iPhone 14, particularly the iPhone 14 Pro models.
And the long-rumored satellite connectivity feature has been confirmed.