In September of 2015, Apple revealed that they would soon be releasing a line of new products including the iPhone 6s, the iPhone 6s Plus, the iPad Pro, and the Apple Pencil. These annoucements are the topic behind this sample essay.
Apple Products in 2015
The first three have been revamped from earlier models to solve existing problems and improve the efficiency and flexibility of the devices while the Apple Pencil has been developed as a stylus with never-before-seen capabilities. These new machines are highly anticipated and promise to contain incredible updates and new features. The new innovations promise a unique experience for users that has not been seen with any other products. As the public anxiously anticipate their release, reviews and announcements about the new products only cause the excitement to grow.
The iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus
On September 9, 2015, Apple announced the release of their ninth-generation iPhones during a media event in San Francisco, California. During the announcement, CEO Tim Cook said of the new phones, “While they may look familiar, we have changed everything about these new iPhones.” (“iPhone 6s” 2015). While the phones will still have 4.7 and 5.5 inch Retina displays and retain the same exterior designs as the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 plus, the hardware on the inside, everything from the processor to the camera, is newly done and improved. Things like the vibration engine and the touchscreen have been updated and the phones are made from entirely new materials.
The new iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus are made from 7000 Series aluminum alloy, which is stronger and much more durable than the 6000 Series aluminum used for the previous iPhones. The new material will help strengthen the areas around the volume and home buttons. It will also help eliminate weak structure points that made the earlier iPhone 6 phones, which sometimes bend when sitting in one’s pocket, easier to bend
The material comes with some downsides, however. The iPhone 6s and 6s Plus are thicker, heavier, and taller than their earlier models. The 6s model is 7.1 millimeters thick and weighs 143 grams while the iPhone 6 was 6.9 millimeters thick and weighed 129 grams (“iPhone 6s” 2015). The majority of the added weight can be attributed to the 3D Touch because the display module is heavier than the display used for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. Still, though, the phones contain the same basic physical design with soft and rounded corners, prominent antenna bands, curved glass screens, and of course supports all the apps you’ve come to love, like Tinder.
Those screens have been updated with stronger glass using a dual ion exchange process (Goodwin 2015). Another change that was made to the new iPhone is that it comes in a new aluminum finish: Rose Gold, which now accompanies the traditional Silver, Space Gray, and Gold color varieties.
The iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus feature new second-generation Touch ID modules. These can help make fingerprint detection twice as fast as before. They also contains 64-bit A9 processors, making them 70% faster at central processing tasks and 90% faster at graphics processing tasks than the A8 processors in the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus (“iPhone 6” 2015).
The newer models also come with a built-in M9 motion coprocessor that helps enable new features, such as the always-on ‘Hey Siri’ functionality. The LTE and Wi-Fi speeds of the phones have also been improved. With LTE Advanced, the LTE speed is twice as fast at up to 300 Mb/s and it supports 23 LTE bands (“iPhone 6s” 2015). When connected to Wi-Fi, the new phones are twice as fast as their earlier counterparts and are capable of WiFi speeds up to 866 Mb/s.
The new phones contain expanded Multi-Touch that can now encompass a third dimension through a 3-Dimensional Touch feature. Apple has been calling the feature ‘the future of Multi-Touch’. Instead of just recognizing a tap, the new phones now recognize pressure and can enable a wide range of new shortcut gestures that are being called ‘Peek’ and ‘Pop’ (Goodwin 2015). The phones’ new Taptic Engines provide tactile feedback whenever someone touches the phone with pressure-based gestures.
Generally, Apple’s ‘S’ year upgrades include camera improvements and these new models are no exception. Each one will have a twelve megapixel camera with improvements to color accuracy and autofocus speed. The iPhone 6 Plus has Optical Image Stabilization, though the iPhone 6 does not. The phones support 4K video at 30 FPS and they can capture 63 megapixel panoramas (“iPhone 6s” 2015).
The front-facing camera is five megapixels and features a True Tone retina flash feature that lights up the display just before a photo is taken. Another camera feature of the new iPhones is Live Photos, which captures one and a half seconds of movement before and after a photo is taken. When the 3-D gesture is used on the image, the ‘live photos’ play the short videos and sound clips, designed to add a sense of vitality to still photos.
Apple is also introducing a 12.9-inch iPad Pro as well. Apple CEO Tim Cook described the new iPad as the “most capable and powerful” iPad that Apple has designed yet (“iPad Pro” 2015). The tablet will feature a number of new technologies and innovations. It will be their largest mobile device and offers 78% more screen real estate than the 9.7-inch iPad Air 2, the most recent tablet, which the new iPad is modeled after (“iPad Pro” 2015).
The new iPad is 6.9 millimeters thick and weighs only 1.57 pounds, only half a pound heavier than the iPad Air 2. Though the iPad Pro looks just like a larger iPad Air 2, it actually had an internal hardware on par with desktop machines (Blanco 2015). It will combine portability with a new class of applications with touch-based input methods. The iPad is powered by a 64-bit A9X chip that contains a built-in M9 motion coprocessor and is almost twice as fast at CPU tasks and twice as fast at GPU tasks as the most recent iPad.
The iPad Pro has a new and improved display, as well. It contains a resolution display of 2732 x 2048 with 226 pixels per inch, giving it a total of over five and a half million pixels (Blanco 2015). It uses technology from the 5K Retina iMac in addition to display elements designed for the best possible ratio, color, and brightness. For the very first time in an Apply device, the display will use a variable refresh rate, which will preserve power when static images appear on the screen, giving it “all day” 10 hours battery life- a surprising length for a device with such a large screen.
As for audio, the iPad Pro contains a four speaker audio system that automatically balances the sound on the left and right, depending on how the iPad is held for the best sound possible. The newer model can put out three times as much volume as the iPad Air 2 (“iPad Pro” 2015). It also has an 8 megapixel rear camera and a 1.2 megapixel front-facing camera for taking pictures and video. The iPad Pro includes 802.11ac Wi-Fi and features both Touch ID and an LTE option.
The iPad Pro has increased flexibility with the release of two other Apple accessories- the Apple Pencil, which we will review later, and the Smart Keyboard. They were built with the iPad Pro so the devices work incredibly well together.
The Smart Keyboard is basically a Smart Cover with a keyboard built-in. However, it is designed without a battery because it is able to connect to the iPad Pro with the tablet’s new Smart Connector, a port able to provide date and power alike (“iPad Pro” 2015). Though these accessories are entirely optional, they add a whole new flexibility and enhance the possibilities of the iPad.
The Apple pencil
The Apple Pencil was created to work in tandem with the iPad Pro. It is a pressure-sensitive stylus that contains multiple sensors that have the capability of detecting position, force, and tilt (“iPad Pro” 2015). It is able to touch a single pixel on the iPad Pro screen, making it an incredibly useful tool for artists. It can do anything from sketching a picture to painting a portrait to drafting a blueprint, making it incredibly versatile and increasing its usability and flexibility.
Something that separates the Apple Pencil from other similar tools is its incredibly fast responsiveness. Its latency, the delay between you drawing and it appearing on the screen, is nearly imperceptible (Statt 2015). The iPad Pro can tell when you are using your finger or the Apple Pencil. When it senses the Pencil, the system scans its signal at a rate of 240 times per second, giving it twice as many data points as it collects with your finger (“Apple Pencil” 2015). This helps to reduce the lapse between you using the stylus and the design appearing on the display to milliseconds.
The Apple Pencil contains intricate and astoundingly accurate pressure sensors that are capable of measuring a wide range of forces. The sensor can determine exactly how hard the tip of the Pencil is being pressed down (“Apple Pencil” 2015). Using a gentle touch can produce the wispiest of lines while more pressure draws thicker lines, making the creative abilities limitless. It also contains two tilt sensors in its top that can determine the exact orientation and angle of your hand. The Multi-Touch display can detect the natural position of your hands, allowing you to create a shading effect by tilting the Pencil the way that you might use a regular pencil or a piece of charcoal.
Users can charge the Apple Pencil with its Lightning connector by plugging it into the iPad Pro. The elongated design of the Apple Pencil allows it to be charging even while the iPad Pro sits inside its case, increasing both its usability and mobility. When it is fully charged, the Pencil provides twelve hours of annotating, editing, sketching, and scribbling (“Apple Pencil” 2015). If you find that the battery is almost depleted while you are using it, plugging it in for fifteen seconds provides you with thirty minutes of use. These features are new and innovative for styluses and make the Apple Pencil unique among similar products.
In conclusion, these new products offered by Apple are unique, exciting, and revolutionary. The devices contain improved hardware and processing power, in addition to physical design improvements, better and more refined features, and innovative new technologies. They promise to provide a user experience that is unlike anything that has been experienced before, both in Apple devices and otherwise.
The new iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus promise to perform in ways that mobile phones have yet to do, the iPad Pro contains more features and improvements than any Apple tablet the market has ever seen, and the Apple Pencil provides a unique stylus experienced that has yet to be achieved by any other similar product. These new designs have garnered a lot of excitement as the public eagerly awaits their chance to experience these improved designs themselves.
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Statt, Nick. “Here’s Why Apple Made the Stylus That Steve Jobs Hated.” The Verge. Vox Media, Inc., 09 Sept. 2015. Web. 06 Oct. 2015.