Apple unveiled an updated version of its iPad tablet with a brighter screen on Tuesday, available to order from Friday and with a $329 starting price. The company also announced a more powerful version of the iPhone SE and the new iPhone 7 & iPhone 7 Plus (PRODUCT)RED Special Edition.
The updated version of the iPad tablet is available to order from Friday and with a $329 starting price that is the lowest ever for a full-sized tablet from Apple.
The new iPad model starts at 32 GB of storage and replaces the iPad Air 2. It will be slightly less expensive than the smaller iPad Mini 4, which starts at $399 for a 128 GB model.
iPad features a bright Retina display with over 3.1 million pixels, and is enclosed in a sturdy yet thin aluminum unibody enclosure weighing just one pound. The Apple-designed A9 chip with 64-bit desktop-class architecture delivers fast processing and graphics performance for apps and games, while maintaining the same all-day battery life.
The front- and back-facing cameras offer low-light performance and HD video recording. The device also supports fast wireless connectvity and LTE cellular bands worldwide. Apple SIM makes it even easier to connect to wireless data plans right from your device when traveling in more than 140 countries and regions.
Touch ID gives iPad users a secure way to unlock iPad. With Apple Pay on iPad, paying for physical goods and services within apps or on a website in Safari is easy.
Apple also announced that the iPad mini 4, available in silver, gold and space gray, now offers more capacity for the same price starting at $399 (US) for the 128GB Wi-Fi model and $529 (US) for the 128GB Wi-Fi + Cellular model at Apple.com and Apple Stores.
Apple is widely expected to unveil an update to its flagship iPhone this fall that might have new features such as wireless charging, 3-D facial recognition and a curved display.
Apple also announced a new app for creating videos and sharing them with friends on its iOS devices. The new feature, along with extra iMessage features released in recent years, pushes Apple closer to competing with the features in social networking apps like Snap.
Clips also introduces Live Titles, a feature that lets users create animated captions and titles using just their voice. Fun effects including comic book filters, speech bubbles, shapes and full-screen animated posters help bring out the personality in videos made with Clips.
Clips lets users create multi-clip videos on iPhone or iPad without complicated editing tools. Touch and hold a single button to shoot live video and photos, or add them from the Photo Library. Then add artistic filters, speech bubbles, shapes or emoji. Users can also add full-screen posters with animated backgrounds and customizable text. Clips has dozens of music soundtracks to choose from, and they automatically adjust to match the length of a video.
With Live Titles in Clips, users can add animated captions and titles using just their voice. Captions are generated automatically as a user speaks, and appear on screen perfectly synced with the user's voice. Users can mix and match different styles, and tap any title to adjust text and punctuation, or even add inline emoji. Live Titles supports 36 different languages.
Clips will be available on the App Store for free beginning in April, and is compatible with iPhone 5s and later, the new 9.7-inch iPad, all iPad Air and iPad Pro models, iPad mini 2 and later, and iPod touch 6th generation. Devices must be running iOS 10.3.
Apple also announced that Swift Playgrounds, an app for iPad that helps students learn to code, is now available in five new languages including Simplified Chinese, Japanese, French, German and Latin American Spanish.
Swift Playgrounds is available today for free.
Apple also announced iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus (PRODUCT)RED Special Edition in a vibrant red aluminum finish, in recognition of more than 10 years of partnership between Apple and (RED).
Both phones share the same technical characteristics with the existing iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus models.
iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus (PRODUCT)RED Special Edition are available worldwide beginning Friday in 128GB and 256GB models starting at $749 (US). The special edition (PRODUCT)RED iPhone joins iPhone 7 finishes in jet black, black, silver, gold and rose gold.
Apple also said its smaller iPhone SE model with a four-inch display, will be available in 32 and 128 gigabyte (GB) versions, replacing the 16 GB and 64 GB models, at the same starting price of $399 (US) at Apple.com and Apple Stores.
Apple Watch band offerings expand
Last but not least, Apple unveiled a new collection of interchangeable bands for the Apple Watch.
Highlights for the season include a wide stripe Woven Nylon band, standalone Nike Sport Bands and Apple Watch Hermes bands in striking new colors. All-new bands are available to order today from apple.com and for purchase at select Apple Stores, Apple Authorized Resellers and carriers in late March.
The new collection of bands include:
- Sport in Pebble, Azure and Camellia
- Woven Nylon in Berry, Tahoe Blue, Orange, Red, Pollen and Midnight Blue
- Classic Buckle with new buckle design in Sapphire, Berry and Taupe
The Nike Sport Bands will now be sold separately in:
- Pure Platinum/White
The newest expression of Apple Watch Hermes bands includes:
- 38mm Double Tour in Bleu Zephyr Epsom leather
- 38mm Double Buckle Cuff in Fauve Barenia leather
- 42mm Single Tour in Lime Epsom leather
- 42mm Single Tour in Colvert Swift leather
Apple Watch is available in two different case sizes, 38mm and 42mm. Apple Watch Series 1 is available in gold, rose gold, silver or space gray aluminum cases paired with a Sport Band and starts at just $269 (US); Apple Watch Series 2 is available in gold, rose gold, silver or space gray aluminum, or silver or space black stainless steel cases paired with a wide variety of bands starting at $369 (US); and the ceramic Apple Watch Edition starts at $1249 (US). Apple Watch Nike+ starts at $369 (US) and Apple Watch Hermes starts at $1149 (US).
- New Apple Watch and Apple Watch bands are available to order beginning today. The Sport and Woven Nylon bands are $49 (US) and the Classic Buckle is $149 (US).
- New Apple Watch Nike+ and Nike Sport bands are available to order today for $49 (US).
- The Apple Watch Hermes and Apple Watch Hermes bands are available to order now. The Single Tour is $339 (US), the Double Tour is $489 (US) and the Double Buckle Cuff is $689 (US).