Welcome to iPhone Day 2016.
Months of rumors and leaked parts finally culminate today at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco, where Apple CEO Tim Cook and his merry gang of techno wizards are expected to unveil some new iPhones and Apple Watch.
Cult of Mac is set to liveblog the festivities today. We’ll be mixing real-time details and analysis with all the dull wit and pithy snark we can muster for what is expected to be one of the “most boring iPhone updates” ever. The event starts at 10 a.m. Pacific, but we’ll be getting started well before that.
For a quick recap of what to expect from today’s keynote, check out our roundup of all the announcements Apple will make, including the possibility of some new AirPods.
Today’s event promises to be Apple’s biggest event of the year, so turn on the stream on your Apple TV and join us in the iPhone 7 event liveblog below.
For those watching at home, what did you think of Apple’s surprisingly surprising iPhone 7 event? Let us know in the comments below.
For something that was supposed to be a “mehPhone,” the iPhone 7 looks pretty great to me, too. I can’t wait to get one. And wrapping the big show with Sia didn’t sour me on the whole thing, either. Ditto on the Jet Black Plus.
The new iPhone 7 looks sweeeeet. Who cares that it looks similar to the previous design? It’s been upgraded in all the right places — camera, battery, screen, CPU. I’ll be camping out to get one: Jet Black Plus, 256GB.
Maddie Ziegler appears with Sia!
Sia performs her hit “The Greatest” live for the first time, just to prove that music is at the core of Apple’s DNA. With nekkid-looking body-suited dancers!
Oh, nevermind. It’s just Sia.
iPhone 7 preorders start Sept. 9, and new models ship a week later on Sept. 16 in 30 countries. iOS 10 lands September 13. AirPods ship late October for $159.
iPhone Upgrade Program pricing starts at $32. And the program is expanding to U.K. and China.
Carrier pricing starts at $27 per month for iPhone 7 and $32 for iPhone 7 Plus.
Pricing — same as iPhone 6s. iPhone 7 starts at $649 and comes in silver, gold, rose gold, black and jet black. With double the storage.
Another slick commercial touts all the big improvements in the iPhone 7 and Plus. Honestly, despite knowing many key details in advance, Apple is making a pretty convincing case that I need an iPhone 7 ASAP.
Battery life numbers — big boosts across the board! “Longest battery life ever in an iPhone.” iPhone 7 lasts on average two hours more than iPhone 6s, Schiller claims, and an hour more for the Plus models.
Taptic Engine and stereo sound lead to more “visceral” gameplay in Oz: Broken Kingdom, coming to iPhone 7. Scarecrows are scary.
We’re now going to see a demo of iPhone 7 gaming with a new title called Broken Kingdom. It’s an RPG game that looks amazing.
It will enable apps and titles that simply weren’t possible before, according to Schiller. “Console-level gaming on an iPhone.”
A10 Fusion is the most powerful chip ever built for a smartphone, Apple says.
Two of the cores in that chip are high-performance cores. The other two are high-efficiency cores that help deliver better battery life. There’s also a new graphics processor that’s 50% faster than the GPU in the A9.
Look at that ramp-up of iPhone performance. Schiller’s “it is a rocket ship” quote about A10 Fusion seems pretty apt.
Yes, it’s the new A10, officially called A10 Fusion. It’s a 64-bit quad-core processor that is 40 percent faster than the A9 in iPhone 6s.
Skipped 9 >>> Apple Pay is coming to Japan (we already knew this). It’s all part of the big expansion — Schiller calls “it is a huge hit” and says iOS 10 makes it even easier.
Feature number 10 is performance.
There’s also BeatsX, and “affordable” and “light” alternative to regular Beats.
Beats is also planning new headphones will Apple’s new W1 chip, including the new Solo3 Wireless and PowerBeats3 Wireless.
I’m going to lose those so easily.
Those stems look so weird. But the charging case is pretty sexy.
But will we see wireless charging today?
They’re just the beginning of a “truly wireless” future Apple is working towards, Jony Ive says.
Sensors detect when the AirPods are in your ear and only play when they’re in use. A double-tap activates Siri, and you can listen for five hours on a single charge. The charging case adds up to 24 hours.
Feature number 8 is AirPods. They’re basically EarPods that connect wirelessly to your iPhone using Apple’s new W1 chip, which delivers a consistent connection and excellent audio.
It’s also about freeing up space for new technologies.
Schiller is now explaining why Apple is moving away from the headphone jack. It’s all about courage, he says. The courage to move on and move to a better standard.
All of the EarPods bundled with iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus will have Lightning connectors. Apple will also include a Lightning adapter (free) that will let you connect your favorite headphones with standard 3.5mm jacks.
Schiller is trying to convince us that we don’t need a headphone jack anymore.
Feature number 7 is EarPods. Without a headphone jack, they now connect via Lightning.
Feature number 6 is audio. iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus boast stereo speakers — one at the bottom and one at the top of the device. They’re twice as loud as iPhone 6s.
Ian Spalter, head of design at Instagram is here to talk iPhone 7’s camera.
As you would expect, iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus also boast 3D Touch.
Apple still calls the Retina HD display the best display on any smartphone. It’s now 25 percent brighter, has a wide color gamut, and boasts automatic color management.
Feature number 5 is the Retina HD display.
Apple’s going deep learning crazy! Although it’s only going to be available as a software update later this year.
Machine learning creates a depth map for photos. That can heighten the depth effect of the pictures so you can see real-time deep depth preview through software.
Schiller is now demonstrating iPhone 7 Plus’ shallow depth of field. It’s incredibly impressive.
Digital zoom now goes up to 10x, and thanks to that telephoto lens, picture quality won’t take as much of a hit.
Up to 10x zoom.
You can easily switch between both in the UI. That’s pretty amazing.
Instead of digital zoom, which reduces picture quality, iPhone 7 Plus offers 2x optical zoom.
Why? That telephoto lens allows for zoom that you don’t normally get from a smartphone.
Dual-lens setup is impressive. One lens has the wide-angle lens, while the other is telephoto.
iPhone 7 Plus has TWO cameras — both of which are 12-megapixel sensors. One’s exactly the same as the sensor in iPhone 7; the other is a telephoto lens.
Wait for it…
The iPhone 7 Plus’ camera is even better!
Apple has made huge improvements to its FaceTime camera for the iPhone 7. It’s now a 7-megapixel sensor with image stabilization, and wide color capture.
7MP Facetime HD camera.
iOS 10 also allows us to capture RAW image files on iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.
Low-light performance is also greatly improved. Live Photos are also better, with image stabilization, the ability to crop and apply filters, and more.
Apple is now showing us some untouched images taken with the iPhone 7. They’re stunning.
That new processor performs 100 billion operations every time you take a picture, Apple says, and it does it in just 25 milliseconds.
iPhone 7 also boasts Apple’s new image signal processor, which promises better photos by automatically adjusting things like exposure, white balance, noise reduction, and more.
Apple has also added an additional two LEDs (four in total) to the True Tone flash. It also boasts a flicker sensor that measures the flicker of light in the room.
iPhone 7’s new iSight camera is a “huge advancement,” Schiller says. It has optical image stabilization in both models, a wider f/1.8 aperture that captures more light, a six-element lens, and a new 12-megapixel sensor.
Optical image stabilizer is now in the 4.7-inch iPhone too.
Feature number 4 is the iPhone 7’s camera.
iPhone 7 is IP67 certified — just like the latest smartphones from Samsung. That means you can take it up to 5 feet of water for up to 30 minutes, and it’s going to survive.
Home button taptic engine open to devs.
Feature number 3 is water- and dust-resistance.
The home button doesn’t move; clicks are simulated by the Taptic Engine — the same engine that provides feedback for 3D Touch.
The iPhone 7’s home button is more responsive and more reliable, Schiller says. Just as the rumors promised, it’s touch-sensitive.
Home button has undergone a rethink.
Feature number 2 is the new home button!
There’s also a “Black” model, which is like the Jet Black model without the shine. iPhone 7 also comes in gold, silver, and rose gold.
Second new black option called, apparently, “black.” Wonder how many marketing execs that naming process took.
Number 1 is design, Schiller says. It starts with the new “Jet Black” finish, which provides a seamless surface between the glass and aluminum unibody.
“This is the best iPhone we have ever made,” Schiller reminds us. Here are ten major features…
Phil Schiller is now up to tell us more.
“We are so excited about iPhone 7,” Tim says. “It makes all the things you do everyday so much better.”
Only Apple could make an anodization process with a capillary effect for maximum saturation seem this sexy.
It has a “pristine, mirror-like surface,” Jony Ive says. I’m not sure how it will cope with scratches.
Dual-lens camera on the larger model, redesigned antenna bands, and a new manufacturing process that lets Apple achieve that high-gloss black finish.
Well, Jony’s disembodied voice on a snazzy video.
It looks just like all the leaks.
Dual-lens. It does look pretty gorgeous. And here’s Jony Ive to talk about it.
But it is shiny now.
“It has a gorgeous new design,” which actually looks just like last year’s.
“It’s the best iPhone that we have ever created,” Tim says.
Now for the exciting stuff…
Cook is now reminding us about the improvements coming to Messages, like bubble effects, stickers, and third-party app integration.
Over 100 products are coming to market this year with HomeKit support.
Home makes it “unbelievable easy” to manage home automation devices, Cook says, including garage doors, blinds and shutter, lights, and more.
Talking through iOS 10 features.
Tim is now talking iOS 10, which he says is Apple’s biggest iOS upgrade yet, with redesigned Maps and Music apps, the Messages App Store, and the new Home app.
Given that Apple and Amazon have both already spoiled this, it should be a bit less surprising but still awesome. Cook says iPhone now sold more than 1 billion units. We knew that already, but still a crazy statistic.
Next up… iPhone.
And back to Tim.
Original Apple Watch will get a processor upgrade to become Series 1 – $269
Series 2 will cost $369.
Apple Watch Nike+ will cost $369.
Best of all, the Apple Watch Series 2 (or the Nike edition at least) nags you to go for a run.
So Apple basically did everything we suggested in our feature on how to fix Apple Watch.
Apple Watch 1 was a really crappy running watch. But the Series 2 was built with runners in mind more than anything and it looks like they’ve delivered.
Apple Watch Nike+ is a thing. It’s a watch designed with runners in mind.
Uggggh… So I kind of want a Series 2 now. It looks pretty nice.
Apple made an all new ceramic material for Series 2. It’s white and lovely. It’s 4x harder than stainless steel too.
New ceramic Apple Watch. 4x harder than stainless steel. A bit like a return to the white plastic iPod in appearance. But much higher quality.
42 minutes into the Apple keynote and the lady count has finally hit 1.
Series 2 is super fast at picking up a GPS signal, which is a problem I’ve dealt with a lot on other watches.
GPS will be open to third-party devs as well.
Built-in GPS confirmed.
So many Nits
Display is 2x brighter, as well. Brightest display Apple has ever shipped on a product.
New GPU has 2x the graphics performance of Apple Watch gen 1.
Oh, did I say “amazing”? I meant “crazy.”
For anyone interested, Apple’s patent for the water-ejecting Watch speaker is here: http://www.cultofmac.com/397072/apple-has-a-crazy-invention-for-self-drying-iphones/
Who says Apple doesn’t innovate? A self-purging waterproof speaker is pretty amazing.
Did they test this thing on cliff jumping? Because that’s how i lost mine three times :(
Redesigned speaker that ejects water.
“It has been completely engineered,” says William. “Apple Watch Series 2 is swimproof. You can wear it whether you’re swimming, surfing, or just doing that occasional canonball.”
Water resistant to 50 meters.
The first Apple Watch was “splash proof.” This one is “swim proof.”
Apple Watch Series 2 is the official name.
New Apple Watch 2 video on now. Its got a lot of water and sweat in the ad.
Pokemon Go will make Apple Watch a hot item among teens this Christmas.
We haven’t even had new hardware yet, and already this event feels like it’s over-performing in terms of expectations.
You can hit pokestops, hatch eggs, and get notifications when you find a pokemon. It will be shipping before the end of the year.
The interface looks surprisingly awesome on Apple Watch.
Dude demoing Pokemon Go on Apple Watch is totally cheating by just swinging his arms around like a maniac.
Is this an Apple event or a Nintendo event?
Pokemon Go has already been downloaded 500 million times, while trainers have walked 4.6 billion km. That’s astonishing!
This keynote has been a gamer’s dream.
Pokemon Go is coming to Apple Watch!
Apple Watch now comes with an app that reminds you to Breathe. In case you forget how.
Scribbling notes is cool too. Way better than typing or scrolling through automated replies.
The new Dock on watchOS 3 is seriously the best new feature. It completely changes how you use apps on the watch.
Thank god, Jeff Williams is coming on stage to introduce Apple Watch 2 and not David Lynch.
Jeff Williams, Cook’s possible successor, is coming to talk about Apple Watch 2.
Everybody loves Apple Watch, says Tim Cook and JD Power’s smartwatch study.
Top selling smartwatch in the world.
Second only to Rolex in sales revenue for watches worldwide.
Apple Watch: the best way to get notifications because we all need more notifications.
Will we get some numbers?
Onto Apple Watch.
Oh, BTW. Apple already tweeted details of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus and they look super sexy. Pre-orders open today. Launch is set for September 16th.
Real-time collaboration on iWork apps. That’s pretty cool. Even if “beautiful” spreadsheets, aren’t quite as cool as Shigeru Miyamoto.
Real Time Collaboration is coming to iWork, making Apple’s productivity suite a better challenger to Office.
Everyone Can Code looks pretty cool. It seems like its more advanced than Swift Playgrounds
Apple has created a program called Everyone Can Code, to teach kids to code.
Apple donating iPads to more than 55,000 students.
Now onto education…
Do we even care about anything else now?
There are also Super Mario stickers coming for iMessage on iOS 10.
Super Mario Run will NOT have in-app purchases. You’ll pay one price for the full game. Nintendo hasn’t confirmed what that will be yet, but we’ll find out when the game hits the App Store in the holidays.
Holidays 2016 for Super Mario Run!
Super Mario Run has the same incredible visuals you’re used to seeing in Super Mario games. It’s gorgeous. You’ll also get the same great music and sound effects.
You choose an opponent in the battle list and try to beat their highest score.
Man, this is awesome!
There’s also a brand new way to play in a battle mode called Toad Rally.
This is the first Mario game you can play one-handed, Nintendo says.
In later levels you’ll have to change his direction and stomp to defeat enemies. The objective in each level is to collect as many coins as possible.
In Super Mario Run, Mario runs automatically, and you tap the screen to make him jump.
Nintendo wants as many people as possible around the world to enjoy Mario, so they’re bringing him to iOS with a new game called Super Mario Run.
That’s awesome news! “Welcome Mario!” And unlike Pokemon, Tim Cook can pronounce its name.
OMG I can’t breathe
Nintendo is up to talk about it
Super Mario is coming to the App Store!
But there’s someone missing, Cook says…
There are over 500,000 games in the App Store, making it the biggest and most popular category.
iOS devices are now the world’s most popular gaming devices, Cook says.
In the most recent quarter, the App Store generated twice as much revenue as Apple’s closest competitor.
In the last two months, App Store downloads have grown 106% year-on-year.
Over 140 billion apps have now been downloaded from the App Store since 2008.
Moving onto the App Store now. 140 billion have now been downloaded. Spectacular numbers!
Tim’s bragging about Apple Music’s wealth of exclusives.
17 million subscribers for Apple Music, the “premier destination for new artists.”
Cook launching into Apple Music updates.
Tim Cook is onstage and immediately dove into Apple Music. Carpool Karaoke is coming to Apple Music this year. Tim promises no one will sing as badly as he does.
“Sweet home Alabama” as sung by Cook. This is surreal.
This is definitely the funniest Apple keynote intro ever. Pharrell just hopped in the car.
Tim Cook’s singing face could use some work.
James Corden joking about leaks on the internet. This wouldn’t have happened under Steve Jobs.
OMG it’s an Apple Car.
Opening up with a scene of James Corden and Tim Cook driving around. I feel some karaoke coming up
Music’s over… the event’s about to begin.
I know Apple has its own radio station now, but they could atleast make it play good music instead of whatever the hell this is.
The livestream video on Safari is live. Come get some.
Amazon just accidentally spoiled Apple’s big iPhone 7 reveal
30 minutes left. The media is still waiting in the holding pen, but Tim and Eddy are outside getting hyped AF.
Less than one hour to go! You can tune into the event on Apple TV or Safari on your Mac, iPhone, or iPad.
Intel’s CEO is at the event. His company is rumored to have made the new super-fast LTE modem Apple will use in the iPhone 7. And they want to make processors for the next iPhone.
— Shara Tibken (@sharatibken) September 7, 2016
Apple has the cutest bomb-sniffing dog as part of its crew at the event.
The CEO of Shutterstock says iPhone 7’s dual-lens camera is going to be a huge deal for photography.
Twitter user @The_malignant has been dishing out the iPhone 7 scoops the last few weeks and he may have just scored his biggest leak yet. The first press image of the iPhone 7:
— The Malignant (@the_malignant) September 6, 2016
We’ll be kicking off the blog party about an hour before the main event begins. Until then, you can countdown each second with this Apple Timer