Apple brought a lot more than expected with today’s event in San Francisco, pushing new products in media, health, computers, and wearables.
First up was Apple TV news. While we didn’t get new hardware today, Apple sliced the price of its set-top box to $69 and announced that it’ll be the exclusive launch partner for HBO Now, meaning Apple TV users will have access to HBO’s $15 per month service three months before anyone else.
Next Apple debuted ResearchKit, a new software development kit that turns your phone into a health diagnostic tool. With partners like the Stanford Hospital, Apple now offers apps that perform check-ins for patients with Parkinsons, asthma, and more.
The big hardware reveal of the day was the reinvented MacBook, which packs a 12-inch Retina display and tablet-esque hardware into fan-less body with just a single USB-C port for charging, video output, and accessories. The new laptop will be available in April starting at $1299 in the same colors as the iPhone and iPad.
Last up, we got the finalized Apple Watch info we’ve been waiting for since September. While we knew the starting price would be $349, we now know that larger models will cost an extra $50 and that the Stainless Steel and gold models will launch for $549 and $10,000, respectively. We also got to see a few more demos of Apple Watch apps, which will let you do things like send quick responses to incoming messages and order an Uber ride from your wrist.
Today’s event solidified Cupertino’s lock on the Apple-faithful. The new MacBook’s lack of ports means you’ll stick to syncing your documents and photos around using iCloud and AirDrop. The Watch only works with the iPhone, and from the demos we saw today, Android Wear doesn’t have a killer feature that could make the undecided switch platforms. With the new health initiatives, Apple is turning its app ecosystem lead into a key selling point. And if that weren’t a big enough deal, Apple is now the easiest way to watch Game of Thrones if you’re a cord-cutter.