Fall is my favorite time of year. Of course, I love the cooler air, the color in the leaves, and the changing seasons--but that's not even the best part. I won't lie: I love fall mostly because I'm a fan of almost everything Apple makes, and September is when we get brand-new gadgets from Cupertino.
This year is no different. Of course, the big news is the iPhone 11 Pro, featuring a brand-new display, a brand-new chip, and major camera upgrades. But the iPhone wasn't the only thing that Apple introduced today. Here are five things the company released today that you should know about:
1. iPhone 11 and 11 Pro
First, the bad news: The new iPhones really do include the ugly camera bump that we've all been expecting. The good news, however, is that not only does Apple make it look not nearly as bad as the mockups, but it also makes it worth it. The cameras in the new iPhone 11 and 11 Pro are the real deal, with the iPhone 11 Pro now featuring a full 4x optical zoom, ranging from 13mm to 52mm focal lengths.
In fact, Apple spent a lot of time making it clear that the most popular camera in the world (the iPhone) is even better than before. Some of the features feel a little like gimmicks (hello, "slofies"), but since we take almost all of our photos on our iPhone, I'm excited to see what it can do. Honestly, that camera bump doesn't look so bad right now.
The iPhone 11 now starts at $699, which makes it probably the best smartphone value around. The iPhone 11 Pro starts at $999 and $1,099 for the iPhone 11 Pro Max. Preorders start Friday and ship September 20.
Apple also lowered the XR price to $599 and is keeping the iPhone 8 at $499.
2. Apple Watch Series 5
I love my Apple Watch Series 4, but the thing that bugs me the most is that it's honestly a pain to turn on the display when my hands are full, or when I'm busy doing something and can't really raise my hand up to my face. If you feel my pain, the Series 5 will be your new best friend, with what Apple calls an "Always-On Retina Display." The display dims but remains on so you can view both the time and your complications.
The watch's LTPO display allows the display to refresh dynamically from 1hz to 60hz to remain more power-efficient and still features 18-hour battery life. You can also choose from new titanium (natural and space black) and ceramic (white) cases, starting at $399 for the GPS version and $499 for the LTE model, and receive the watch September 20 (with preorders starting today).
3. Apple Arcade
Apple also announced details about its subscription game service, Apple Arcade. At launch, Apple says it will include unlimited access to more than 100 games on iPhone or iPad or Mac, with new games added every month. I'm not really a gamer, but what they demoed looked pretty cool (though Frogger was a little weird with the giant baby monster). Apple Arcade is launching September 19, with a price of $4.99 per month for a family subscription.
4. 10.2-inch iPad
Apple says that the current 9.7-inch iPad model is the most popular iPad, and that more than 60 percent of the people who buy one are first-time iPad owners. It makes sense, then, that the company focused its fall update on that model, increasing the screen to 10.2 inches, and getting it ready to take advantage of iPadOS. It also works with the Smart Keyboard and Apple Pencil and includes Apple's A10 chip--making it designed to power the new game subscription service, Apple Arcade.
The new iPad starts at $329.
5. Apple TV+
Apple TV+ is coming November 1, and the company says it will add new original shows every month. Apple says it will launch with The Morning Show, with Jennifer Aniston, Steve Carell, and Reese Witherspoon, as well as its high-production-value, futuristic See, alongside a handful of others. While the content library will be thin to start, Apple is making it easy to get on board.
That's because the biggest news about TV+ is that it will be priced at $4.99, which is significantly lower than most of its competitors. Oh, and Apple will also give you a full year for free when you buy a new iPhone, iPad, or Mac. Which, let's face it, is clearly targeted at building a massive platform to compete with streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and newcomers like Disney Plus and HBO Max.