Here we go! After months of rumors and a seemingly endless torrent of speculation, it’s finally time for Apple to announce what they’ve been working on for the last few months.
While we can never be completely sure what Apple is set to announce, the signs have long been pointing at the debut of a new iPhone 5S, as well as the potential announcement of a second, cheaper iPhone variant that the ol’ rumor mill has dubbed the “5C”.
Apple’s announcement is set to begin at 10 AM Pacific (12PM Central, 1 PM Eastern, 6 PM London) today, and we’ll be bringing you all of the up-to-the-second news by way of our live blog down below. We’ll be kicking off the live blog a bit before then (let’s say, 9:30 am?) with commentary and photos from the scene, so tune in early! Update: And we’re live!
Cook comes back to the stage, inviting us to go across the hall for a hands-on with the 5C/5S
Costello rolls into his third song, a bluesy tune that, based on the number of times he’s said ‘tripwire’, is presumably called ‘tripwire’. Costello said he made the song for a collaboration album he worked on with The Roots
“Here’s a new song, from an album we’re just about to release next week. See? I’ve got product announcements!”
The crowd goes into a standing ovation for Costello as he finishes his second song. As they sit, he says “Oh.. i thought you were all getting up to dance!”
Costello is now playing his song Radio Soul. We’re going to keep the live blog goin’ just in case there’s more announcement tucked behind the performance, but we might be done here.
Elvis Costello: “You had this Apple radio thing going on today. When I first got into the business, I thought radio was great. This was my imaginary song about radio before I learned how foul it is”
He’s playing his version of Nick Lowe’s Peace, Love, and Understanding
Costello has taken the stage to close the show.
“He’s a grammy award winner, an inductee into the rock and roll hall of fame. Please join me and welcoming our friend, Elvis Costello”
“Before we close this morning, we’d like to return to music. We’ve said many times before that music is deeply engrained in our DNA. We really do love music. We love celebrating music. In the past, we’ve invited musical guests to the stage. We’ve invited a guest today, and he’s gone through great lengths to get here.”
Tim thanks “all the teams that worked so incredibly hard on this products”
“Now, we prepared a few ads. I’ve selected one this morning, and I’d like to play it for you..” [Tim cuts to the promo]
Tim Cook retakes the stage to recap both devices.
For the first time, it’ll be launching in China at the same time as most other countries. By December, they want it to available in over 100 countries.
In Japan, NTT Docomo will be getting the iPhone for the first time
You’ll be able to order it on Sept 20th in the US, Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Japan, Singapore, United Kingdom.
iPhone 5C will go up for pre order on September 13th. Both devices will go on sale on Sept 20th.
iPhone 4S will be offered for free on a 2 year contract
On to the environmental check list: The 5S arsenic free, mercury free, BFR free, PVC free, and ‘highly recyclable’
It’ll be 199 for the 16GB model, 299 for 32GB, and 399 for 64GB on a 2 year contract
“This is our most forward thinking phone yet. It’s available in silver, gold, and ‘space grey”
“Throughout this, you’ve heard about iOS 7. Now you know that iOS 7 has been built to support the 64-bit processor”
Phil recaps the big new features of the 5S: the A7 chip, the new camera features, and TouchID
All fingerprint data is encrypted and locked in the A7 chip. It’s never directly accessible by software, and is not stored on Apple’s servers and never backed up to iCloud
“[The sapphire crystal] acts as a lens to focus the sensor on your finger”
“It can read multiple finger prints, and read them from any orientation”
“Everytime you use it, it gets better at reading your prints.”
“Your fingerprint is one of the best passwords in the world.”
We’ve cut to a video about the tech built into the 5S, again featuring Ive.
“Now you can simply touch the home button to unlock your phone. Since it’s built in, you can also use it to make iTunes purchases [without typing your password]“
The Touch ID sensor will be built into the home button. The home button is now made of laser-cut sapphire crystal, surrounded by a stainless steel detection ring on top of the touch ID sensor
The Touch ID fingerprint sensor is capacitive, 170 microns thin, has a 500 ppi resolution, scans sub-epidermal skin layers, and has 360 degree readability (no matter how you train the sensor to read your finger, it can read it from any rotation).
Touch ID reads your fingerprint at an incredibly detailed level.
We’ve set up a new technology that makes this super easy to do. We call it: Touch ID.
“There’s so much personal stuff on these devices; our email, our photos, our contacts. We have to protect them. The most common way is to set up a passcode. A simple 4-digit passcode, or a more complex one if you want. Unfortunately, some people find it’s too cumbersome and dont set it up. In our research as much as half of people don’t ever set it up.”
“The third [big feature] we want to show has to do with security”
Phil cuts to a 28 megapixel panoramic photo shot on the 5S.
“Whats great is that we can auto adjust exposure as you shoot a panoramic, adjusting for lighting shifts on the fly”
Schiller shows a series of photos that they shot with the 5S that “haven’t been touched in anyway”. They’re clearly taken by some pretty darn good photographers, but the photos look great.
“There’s the standard camera application, but then there’s a second one that lets you shoot videos like this..” [Phil plays a video of a man diving into a pool in Slo-Mo"]
The SloMo app can shoot HD video (720P) at 120 frames per second
“One more great camera feature we want to tell you about: slow-mo”
“There’s also a fun new burst mode. If you hold your finger on the shutter, it can take up to 10 frames per second”
The 5S also does auto-image stabilization; it takes multiple photos at once, and combines the sharpest parts of each image
Phil compares a photo taken with a standard flash, versus their own hybrid-flash photo.
The flash in the iPhone 5S has two LEDs — one white, one amber. It analyzes the lighting in the room, adjusting the color of the flash accordingly.
“Let me give you an example of some of the things our new camera app does for you. Before you even take a picture, it’s setting light balance, and exposure. For the first time, it’s creating a dynamic local tone map around the image. For the first time, it’s doing autofucs matrix metering with 15 focus zones. When you do take a picture, it automatically finds the sharpest of multiple pictures”
“Our competitors would’ve just packed more pixels on that. Thats not what we do. We know a secret: bigger pixels = better pictures. Our sensor has 1.5 micron pixels.”
“We have some huge advancements in iPhone technology that allow for just that. It has a larger, f/2.2 aperture. It’s got a new, 15% larger active sensor area”
“It used to be that if you wanted to take better pictures, you’d have to learn to be a better photographer… Most of us just want to take a picture.”
“Second, the camera system. People love taking photos with the iPhone. We wanted to make it even better at taking pictures.”
The battery life is “even better than that of the iPhone 5″. Full chart with battery life expectations incoming..
Apple has been working with Nike to test this, building an app that counts your stride and movements throughout the day.
It continuously measures motion data, accelerometer, and gestural data.
Apple sees this opening a “whole new generation of health and fitness applications”. It can identify user movement, determining whether you’re walking or driving.
Phil Schiller comes back to the stage.
“But that’s not all! We have a new chip called the M7 that works along with the A7.”
The M7 is a ‘motion processor’
They’re demoing one of the new bosses in Infinity Blade. They start out with one of the trolls from the previous games — then in swoops a dragon, so large that it gobbles up the troll.
“With OpenGL ES 3.0 support, we can do things previously seen only in movies. We can add lens flares that would make JJ Abrams proud.”
“The 64-bit chip is so efficient, I literally did a double take when I saw how fast [our environments] loaded.”
Moving Infinity Blade 3 to 64-bit took Epic around 2 hours.
“Each of the areas in Infinity Blade 3 is as big or bigger than the entirety of the original Infinity Blade.”
“Today, we’re thrilled to unveil the epic CONCLUSION of Infinity Blade, with Infinity Blade 3″
“That all sounds great. But what’s really amazing is when you see it in action for the first time.”
Phil invites, Donald Mustard, Co-Founder of ChAIR entertainment (Epic Games) on-stage
Phil shows an image comparing CPU/GPU performance on the original iPhone vs the 5S (image incoming)
“The A7 is up to 2x as fast as the previous generation of CPUs, and handles graphics up to 2X faster”
“You’ve heard a lot about iOS 7, but what we haven’t told you is that its been completely engineed for 64 bit at the same time. It’s got a new 64-bit kernel, libraries, and drivers. All built-in apps have been reengineered. It’s a seamless dev transition, with full backwards compatibility. “
“So lets talk about the hardware. 64-bit, desktop architecture. It’s got a new, modern instruction set. 2x the general-purpose registers, 2x floating-point registers, and over 1 billion transistors”
“Today, we’re going to see that Apple will move the mobile computing world from 32-bit to 64-bit in one day.”
“The iPhone 5S is a huge leap forward in mobile computing performance. It starts with a brand new system on a chip called the A7. A7 is 64-bit, the world’s first and only such CPU in a smartphone.”
“Before, performance meant big CPUs and big graphics card and big fans. Thank goodness we’ve moved past that”
“There are so many innovations inside of it, but we’re going to tell you about 3 today.”
“It’s the gold standard in phones.” (zing!)
“This is iPhone 5S.”
A video plays showing swirling liquid flying about, coming together to form the rumored gold iPhone 5S.
“This is what it looks like…” [Phil cuts to another video...]
“The 5S is the most forward thinking of our devices; in fact, it might be the most forward-thinking device ever”
“Thats the first of our new devices. The second is called the iPhone 5S’
“I think it’s remarkable how something can feel familiar, but be new at the same time. That’s the iPhone 5C”
The video is now just touching on how iOS 7 runs on the 5C.
“This is just an example of how we design and build our products in concert.”
He moves into discussing Apple’s new 5C cases. “The soft, matte texture of the case is a contrast to the bright, glossy back of the phone”
“We developed the design by creating an entirely new structural architecture. It starts with a single piece of polycarbonate, into which we insert a steel structural frame, creating a whole new bespoke design…. The entire assembly goes through multiple finishing surfaces, including a lacquer hardcoat”
Phil cuts to a promo video for the 5C.
Jony Ive’s voice over comes in: “The 5C is beautifully, unapologetically plastic.”
He runs through the environmental check-list. It’s free of all the nasty chemicals Apple tends to avoid.
“Oh, and yeah, it’s Android free”
16gb model will be $99 and 32GB for $199 on a 2-year contract
It’s got a 8mp camera on the rear, and comes in Blue/white/red/yellow/green.
“Inside, it’s powered by an apple-designed A6 chip.”
It also has a higher-capacity battery than previous iPhones
“It’s got a beautiful, 4-inch retina display”
“The back is made from a hard-coated polycarbonate. Inside, it’s built with a new steel-inforced construction method”
“The team has created a really cool line of custom cases for the 5C. They’re soft, and cool.”
Each case has holes cut out, allowing a bit of the phone’s original color to pop through.
As rumored, each device comes with color-matched wall paper
“This is the iPhone 5C, and it’s really</em stunning. The entire back and sides are made from a single part, its front one glass, multi-touch surface. As close as you look, you wont see joints or seams"
“Which is great! That means people are excited about it. But you haven’t seen it like this.” [Phil Cuts to a promo video for the 5C"]
“The iPhone 5C has an incredible new design, one that’s more fun and colorful than any design we’ve done before. A few of you might have seen it around the web [audience laughs]“
“Good morning everyone! I’m very happy to be here, because I have the honor and privilege to present these two new devices to you. The first one is called the iPhone 5C”
“This allows us to serve even more customers. To tell you even more about these designs, I’d like to invite Phil Schiller up to the stage”
“Business has become so large… we’re going to replace the iPhone 5 with not one, but two new designs”
“This year, we’re not going to do that.”
“A year ago, we launch iPhone 5. Customers loved [everything about it.] The iPhone 5 helped us take our business to an entirely new level. In the past, when we announced a new price, we lowed the price of the current iphone, making it even more accessible.”
“Now I’d like to talk about iPhone. A couple of you may have been expecting this…”
All free on any new iPad, iPhone or 5th gen iPod touch.
“When you’re setting up your new iOS 7 devices, with one touch: boom — all 5 of these apps (plus some additional ones) are downloaded”
“No other platform has any apps like these. We think that all iOS devices are made even better with these apps, and almost all of our customers want these apps. So today, we’re announcing that we’re making all 5 of these apps free.”
“iPads aren’t great just for consuming content. They’re also great for creating content. We have content like iPhoto, which lets you take your photo editing to the next level. And iMovie, which lets you create movies straight from your iPad”
“And Numbers. Numbers is the best spreadsheet design software anywhere.”
“And Pages. It allows you to create and edit documents from anywhere”
“iWork has three amazing apps. The first is Keynote. Keynote allows you to create world class presentations on your iPad or iPhone”
We’re moving into chat of iWork
It’ll support the iPhone 4 and later, ipad 2 and later, iPad Mini, and iPod Touch (5th Gen)
iOS 7 will be avallable (free) beginning on September 18th
“Getting iOS 7 is so great; it’s getting a device thats so much more beautiful and useful than before, but that you already know how to use”
He sprints through iOS 7’s new music app, including the built-in iTunes Radio support. “Of course, iOS 7 is more than I can show you here. It has over 200 new features.”
He briefly touches on AirDrop, iOS 7’s one click peer-to-peer file transfer system. Open airdrop on two phones, tap your friend’s photo, and you can share pictures straight to their device.
So far, it’s mostly a recap of the stuff announced at WWDC. Nothing wrong with that, though.
Craig moves onto the new Camera app in iOS 7, including its built-in Instagram-esque filters.
They’re also introducing a bunch of new built-in ringtones and default text tones. The ring tones were very upbeat and techno-y; the text tones sounded straight out of Zelda
Now we’re moving into changes to Siri, like its new “higher quality male and female voices.”
He asks, “What’s Lady Gaga saying?”, and Siri pulls up her most recent Tweets. Apple hearts Gaga.
He jumps into the changes made into Safari in iOS 7, like its 3D tabbing interface.
“We’ve also made search more convenient than ever before. With iOS 7, you can pull down from anywhere and type what you’re looking for and find it, just like that”
Craig runs through the major changes with iOS 7; it’s new interface, its new color palettes, things like parallax wallpapers, a single-swipe control panel for things like airplane mode
“[with iOS] Soon, we’ll witness an event where virtually overnight people download iOS 7 and get a whole new experience with their device”
“To tell you all about it, i’d like to invite Craig up”
“Since we make updates easy, and available to as many customers as possible, iOS 7 will quickly become the world’s most popular mobile operating system”
“We’ve also been hard at work at completing iOS 7. Next month, we will ship the 700 millionth iOS device”
“Our store [in Stanford] has long been overdue for an overhaul. This weekend, we’re launching this store”
Cook comes back to the stage.
“Also, this month, a lot of excitement in retail. As you know, we’ve been expanding our footprint outside of the US. Lately, we’ve been focusing on something closer to home.”
We’re watching a quick video about the iTunes Festival. Swirling stage lights! Cheering crowds! Lots of oontz oontz oontz and boom, boom, boom, then a cut to Lady Gaga doin’ her thing
20 million people applied for tickets to the iTunes Festival.
“It was like we were launching a product!”
“We had our iTunes festival this month. This is the 7th year we’ve done this festival, and this year was our best one yet…. We had the most incredible lineup of global superstars, and incredible headliners. Lady Gaga opened the festival, performing her new, full-length album before it was available”
“Before we dive in, I’ve got some exciting updates from within the company”
“Welcome! A special welcome to everyone joining us from Berlin, Beijing, and Tokyo this morning”
Tim Cook has taken the stage.
There go the lights! Time to start!
Alright! We’re in, we’ve got power, and we’ve got WiFi. The announcement should start in moments.
We’re in! We’re setting up our gear as I type this
Tim Cook just bolted into the theater, flanked on all sides by his staff
Sounds like there won’t be an official live video stream. “If we’re going to do that, we’d generally announce it the morning of”, says an Apple rep
The waiting area is officially packed. We’re told we should be in the theater within a few minutes.
Oh, and there goes Al Gore. All of these folks are being swept off to some other waiting area.
Its almost time! We should be heading in to the theater at around 9:40.
Apple staffers are starting to sit down at the check-in desks. Looks like we should be getting badged up soon!
Lots of people mistakenly posting links to the old WWDC video thinking its the live stream. It’s not. No word on an official stream for today. Be wary of links to “leaked” streams, especially as the event hasn’t started yet and no one is inside the theater.
We’re still outside of another 40 minutes or so, with the announcement scheduled to start at 10 AM Pacific. Much of Apple’s media team has shown up to man the doors, and a few of their execs have poked their heads out from the theater.
Walt Mossberg just rolled up in his car and honked, scaring pretty much every single sleepy person waiting in line.
We poked around a bit while we waited outside. If I recall, this wall used to be decorated with a gigantic Apple logo. Now it’s a Jobs quote. I’m not sure if it’s here just for today, but it fits with the iOS 7 overhaul pretty well.
“If you do something and it turns out pretty good then you should go do something else wonderful, not dwell on it for too long. Just figure out what’s next”
Also while sitting here watching stuff quietly, had plenty of time to do forensics on the sign (invite image above). Note the empty halo circles – looks like those leaks of a lighted halo around the home button we’ve been seeing.
We’re getting lots of questions about whether or not Apple will have an official live video stream, but we haven’t heard anything one way or the other yet. They’d have announced it by now, generally.
The sun is up! Other people are slowly arriving! Alas, it’ll probably be pretty quiet here until at least 9 am Pacific. The event is scheduled to start at 10 AM Pacific.
The Apple Store is down. Surprise*!
[* Note: not actually a surprise.]
Hey there! Greg here. You’re here a bit early, but feel free to hang around.
Apple’s announcement is set to begin at 10 AM Pacific (12PM Central, 1 PM Eastern, 6 PM London) today.
We’ll fire things up a bit before 10 to start bringing in photos and commentary live from Apple’s Cupertino campus.
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