At its annual event in San Francisco, Cupertino-based Apple Inc. yesterday unveiled the next generation iterations of its flagship device – the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.
At a launch event, the tech giant revealed an upgraded iPhone that, while aesthetically similar to the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, has several big differences, including no headphone jack.
The other improvements over the current version include a pressure-sensitive home button, better camera, a faster processor and improved battery life.
It also comes in a new range of colours and a starting size of 32GB.
“iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus dramatically improve every aspect of the iPhone experience, reaching a new level of innovation and precision to make this the best iPhone we have ever made,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing.
“The completely redesigned cameras shoot incredible photos and videos day or night, the A10 Fusion chip is the most powerful chip on any smartphone while delivering the best battery life ever in an iPhone, and an entirely new stereo speaker system provides twice the sound, all within the first water and dust resistant iPhone.”
A snapshot of new features
The most significant changes on the new phone include an upgraded camera, a new home button and the removal of the 3.5mm headphone jack.
Say Cheese: The 12MP camera includes optical image stabilisation on both iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, and a larger ƒ/1.8 aperture and 6-element lens enable brighter, more detailed photos and videos, and a wide colour capture.
iPhone 7 Plus features the same 12MP wide angle camera as iPhone 7 and adds a 12MP telephoto camera that together offer optical zoom at two times and up to 10 times digital zoom for photos.
Other camera advancements Include:
• New Apple-designed Image Signal Processor, which processes over 100 billion operations on a single photo in as little as 25 milliseconds, resulting in incredible photos and videos;
• New 7-megapixel FaceTime HD camera with wide colour capture, advanced pixel technology and auto image stabilization for even better selfies; and
• New Quad-LED True Tone flash that is 50 per cent brighter than iPhone 6s including an innovative sensor that detects the flickering in lights and compensates for it in videos and photos.
Cook kills jack: Apple says the new stereo speakers on its forthcoming devices offer sound that is two times louder than iPhone 6s, offering increased dynamic range of sound and a higher quality speakerphone. The new iPhone comes with EarPods with Lightning connector to deliver incredible sound, as well as a 3.5 mm headphone jack adapter that allows customers to use old headphones and accessories.
Instead of a headphone jack, the iPhone 7 will use Apple’s proprietary Lightning charging port to connect a headset (included with the smartphones); alternatively users also can connect to wireless earbuds via Bluetooth, and the iPhone 7 will also include an adapter to connect to analogue headphones.
Its new wireless headphones, AirPods, feature the new Apple W1 chip and allow users to access the power of Siri with a double tap.
Designed to make a splash: The iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus are Apple’s first water- and dust-resistant smartphones thanks to what the company says is an “entirely reengineered enclosure”. Nevertheless, Apple warns users against charging a wet iPhone, and adds that the “splash, water and dust resistance are not permanent conditions and resistance might decrease as a result of normal wear”.
Besides the silver, gold and rose gold finishes, Apple has introduced two new black finishes – in anodized matte appearance one with high-gloss look.
Starring the biggest iOS release ever: iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus come with iOS 10, which introduces an update to Messages, the ability for Siri to do more by working with apps, new ways to interact with apps and more places to use 3D Touch, redesigned Maps, Photos, Apple Music and News apps, and the Home app.
UAE Pricing, Pre-orders, Availability
The UAE is among the first wave of 28 countries where the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus will be available on Day 1 (next Friday, September 16).
“The official launch of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus on September 7, after months of anticipation, reiterates the importance of the UAE market for Apple. It is extremely positive to note that the UAE is one of the first few countries where the new products will be officially available from September 16,” said Nadeem Khanzadah, Head – OmniChannel Retail, Jumbo Group.
“We are expecting stocks in our stores by September 17, and on stand during Gitex Shopper, which starts on October 1. The prices for iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus start from Dh2,599 and Dh3,099 respectively,” he added.
UAE pre-orders have already begun, with telecom operator Etisalat first off the block to announce on its website that it will “soon” be accepting your money for the new Apple devices, with delivery set right after the official delivery date. The other telco, Du, hasn’t announced it yet, but expect it to follow suit. (Afternoon update: Du has since activated the iPhone 7 page on its website).
The official Apple pricing for the iPhone 7 in the UAE starts at Dh2,599, and the new jet black finish will be available only on the 128GB and 256GB models.
The new wireless AirPods including charging case will be available for Dh649. All iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus models will include EarPods with Lightning Connector and a Lightning to 3.5 mm Headphone Jack Adapter (also sold separately for Dh119 and Dh39, respectively).