Photo Credit: Jewish Press

Waiting for the new iPhone to come out? Want an upgraded iPad? All eyes were on Apple as it unveiled its new product line last Tuesday at the Steve Jobs Theater at Apple Park in Cupertino, California. And it didn’t disappoint. Here’s what we learned:

Apple is branching out! It’s launching a video game subscription service called Apple Arcade for $4.99 a month. Apple Arcade officially debuted on September 17.


Meanwhile, Apple’s new video service, Apple TV+, which is similar to Netflix and Hulu, will be available on November 1 and will stream in over 100 countries. At $4.99 per month, it is the cheapest streaming subscription service on the market – and every new Apple device purchase comes with a free one-year trial.

Also on Tuesday, Apple unveiled its seventh-generation iPad. It’s faster than the previous models and boasts a bigger display and more multitasking features. The new iPad starts at $329. It is available for pre-order and will ship at the end of the month.

Curious about the new Apple Watch Series? Apple Watch Series 5 has 18 hours of battery life and a retina display that’s always on. One of its most notable new features is an emergency SOS feature that allows users to contact emergency services in over 150 countries simply by pressing on and holding down the side button of the watch. Previously, the SOS feature was only accessible on the iPhone.

Apple Watch Series 5 is also being used for health research, and a new research app, called Studies, will be available to Apple users later this year. Pricing is the same as the Series 4. The GPS model starts at $399 and the GPS + LTE model at $499. Apple Watch Series 5 will hit stores on September 20, although customers can already purchase it online.

And then, of course, there’s the iPhone 11. The iPhone 11 lineup – iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and iPhone 11 Pro Max – look almost the same as last year’s XR, XS, and XS Max models. But they do have some noteworthy upgrades, specifically in regards to the camera.

The iPhone 11’s camera allows for faster auto-focus and comes with an ultra-wide lens camera as well as a selfie camera that can switch to landscape mode and take slow-motion pictures. Apple is calling these slow motion pictures “slofies.” The iPhone 11 also has a night-mode camera that enables users to take pictures in the dark.

The iPhone 11 starts at $699 and comes in a few new colors, such as green, yellow, and purple.

Most of the Pro and the Pro Max upgrades are also camera-focused. In addition to the triple lens camera in the back – consisting of telephoto lens, wide lens (which lets 40 percent more light in the photo), and ultra-wide lens (which allows for a 120-degree field of view) – the Pro and Pro Max can shoot 4K resolution video at 30 seconds per frame. Users can also record multiple videos at once.

The Pro and the Pro Max are faster than the models they are replacing and have a longer battery life. The Pro should last four hours longer than the XS and the Pro Max should last five hours longer than the XS Max.

Apple claims its new phones will be faster and more powerful than any other phone on the market today. We will see if that’s true. The Pro starts at $999, and the Pro Max starts at $1,099. They both come in gold, silver, space gray, and green. The iPhone 11 lineup is available for pre-order and will start shipping to customers on September 20.

Finally, on Tuesday we learned about the new iOS13. It will come out on September 19 and be available on iPhone 6S and all subsequent models. The new iOS13 boasts a variety of improvements – such as a feature that sends numbers that aren’t in a person’s contact list straight to voicemail (which is useful in avoiding spam calls) and a newly redone Reminder App.

Apple always puts on impressive launch events, and the one on Tuesday was no different. The question is whether it will be enough to entice users – who are relatively happy with their current phones – to upgrade to the latest iPhone, iPad, or Apple Watch.


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Bracha Halperin is a business consultant based in new York City. To comment on her Jewish Press-exclusive tech columns -- or to reach her for any other purpose -- e-mail her at [email protected]. You can also follow her on Instagram or Twitter at: @brachahalperin.