It’s Apple event day!
From tweaks to the Apple Card to all new iMacs and iPads, Apple crammed this one-hour event with news. Don’t have time to sit down and click through every last announcement? We’ve slimmed it down to just the key points for maximum skimmability. Enjoy!
Apple kicked things off with a quick but key mention outlining a shift in how Apple Card works. “Apple Card Family” will allow you to share your card with anyone in your family over the age of 13, with customizable spending limits for each added user. You’ll also now be able to “co-own” an Apple card with another adult, with both owners building up their credit equally.
Apple will launch a redesigned Podcast app, including an option for paid subscriptions (monthly or annual) to individual podcasts.
No new iPhone this time (those come later in the year, generally), but the existing iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 mini are getting a new color option: purple. They used a song from Willy Wonka to announce it, because … well, purple.
After literal years of rumors and leaks, Apple has at long last officially announced its accessory for tracking things like keys, wallets and bags through the same “Find My” app you use to find your various Apple devices when you lose them in the couch.
Called “AirTag” (curiously, not “AirTags”), Apple says they’ll cost $29 each or $99 for a four pack, and launch on April 30. They’ll have user-replaceable batteries but, oddly, no built-in attachment loop; if you want to attach it to something like a keyring, you’ll need to add a case. Which, of course, they’ll be making and selling.
Each AirTag has a built-in speaker for helping you track down lost items, and you can engrave them with texts and/or select emoji for free when you buy them online.
Next-gen Apple TV 4K
Apple announced a big refresh to the Apple TV 4K it first launched back in 2017. Here’s the breakdown:
- Powered by Apple’s A12 Bionic chip.
- You can use an iPhone to calibrate the picture. Start the calibration process, put your iPhone’s front-facing camera near the TV, and Apple TV 4K will automatically optimize its own color/contrast output accordingly.
- They’ve redesigned the remote! They’ve moved away from the much lamented touchpad remote, building this new remote around a five-way clickpad complete with iPod-esque scroll wheel. There’s a Siri button on the side, in case you feel like talking to your TV instead of pushing buttons. Word is (via WSJ’s Joanna Stern) they’ll also be selling this remote separately for $59 for use with the previous-gen Apple TV 4K and Apple TV HD.
- $179 for 32 GB model or $199 for 64 GB.
Time for the iMac to shift over to M1! Apple announced a new lineup of iMacs — and in a throwback to the iMacs of yesteryear, these new ones will come in an array of fancy colors. Here are the highlights:
- Built around the absurdly zippy M1 chipset Apple first introduced into its laptops last year.
- 24-inch “4.5K” display.
- At last, a decent webcam! These new iMacs will ship with a 1080p FaceTime camera.
- Pre-orders start April 20, shipping in late May.
- $1,299 gets you an 8-core CPU/7-core GPU setup, while $1,499 will bump it up to 8-core CPU/8-core GPU.
- It’ll come in seven colors: green, yellow, pink, orange, blue, purple and silver. Some colors will only be available in the more expensive model.
- Both models come with a 256 GB SSD, and two Thunderbolt ports. The $1,499 model adds two USB 3 ports.
- Apple will ship a new version of its Bluetooth Magic Keyboard, now complete with a Touch ID fingerprint sensor.
New iPad Pros
The iPad Pro is going M1, too! Apple says this shift brings a 50% performance improvement over the previous iPad Pro. Here’s whats new:
- 8-core GPU/8-core CPU.
- The 11-inch model will start at $799, while the 12.9-inch model will start at $1,099.
- Cellular models will now have 5G support.
- Thunderbolt and USB 4 support through the USB-C port.
- The 12.9-inch model will have “Liquid Retina XDR” display that Apple says packs 1,000 nits of full-screen brightness or 1,600 nits of peak brightness.
- A feature Apple calls “Center Stage” will automatically keep your face in the center of the frame during FaceTime calls, even as you move about the room.
- Up to 2 TB of built-in storage, and 16 GB of RAM.