Larger iPad Pro, new Apple TV and more announced by Apple


On Wednesday, Apple introduced several new products and updates in a wide-ranging presentation that moved quickly and eschewed the usual stats and updates about the company itself. They included a larger iPad Pro, new iPhones and an overhaul of its Apple TV.

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What’s new…

First, the company touted new styles from Hermés for its Apple Watch line (but declined to give sales figures to demonstrate how well it’s selling) and Watch 2.0 software that will expand its capabilities in healthcare.

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But the new product rollouts began with news of a 12.9-inch screen iPad Pro that will start at $799 and offer more speed, power and screen real estate for designers, movie editors and anyone who wants to watch media on a larger surface. Surprisingly, the company also introduced Apple Pencil, a $99 add-on that adds a pressure-sensitive stylus to the mix for writing and drawing with precision. The company is also adding a $169 Smart Keyboard that makes the iPad Pro akin to MIcrosoft’s Surface Pro tablets. The company also refreshed its iPad Air and iPad Mini line to make them faster at the same prices.

As expected, Apple also upgraded its Apple TV set-top box to give it more power, Siri voice-search capabilities and a revamped remote control with a glass touch surface. Apple is also opening up Apple TV to apps such as the shopping app “Gilt” and making it easier to switch between them. Apple also added gaming capabilities to the device, making iOS games such as “Disney Infinity” on it and a new game from Harmonix.  All that comes at a price. The new Apple TV comes in two models at $149 and $199 a significant jump from what it costs now (about $79).

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Apple also announced new phones, the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus. They’ll be the same size as the current models, 4.7 inches and 5.5 inches, but will come in a new color, rose gold (read: pink), and will include a new feature called “3D Touch” which adds pressure sensitivity to iPhone screens, not unlike Force Touch on some Mac trackpads. They’ll also have an improved 12-megapixel camera and be capable of shooting higher-resolution 4K video as well as “live photos,” which are still photos that turn into videos. The phones will be capable of shooting those kinds of images automatically. Despite the introduction of 4K video, the phones will be the same storage size as the current models, 16 GB, 64 GB and 128 GB.

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iPhone 6S and 6S Plus will cost the same as last year’s model, $199 to start on the 6S and $299 to start on the 6S Plus. The company rolled out its new upgrade program, which includes AppleCare protection for a monthly fee that starts at $32. It will debut Sept. 25. iOS 9, the new operating software, will be available next week on Sept. 16.

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