Apple’s “Spring Forward” event has just wrapped up & here’s a full recap of everything announced. The primary focus of the event was to highlight the Apple Watch which was announced several months ago while also pushing some updates across the mac lineup.
Apple Keynotes are known for their openings figures & sales this event was no different.
Main aspects from the introduction included
Over 120 million people have visited Apple Stores in the last quarter
6 new stores released in China totaling 21 stores
700 million+ iPhones sold
Cook quickly took the time to touch on the Apple TV updates.
Price reduced from $100 to $70
HBO Now Introduced
HBO Now will be an exclusive deal to bring HBO’s content & popular shows such as Game of Thrones to the Apple TV platform for $15 a month.
Tim Cook then introduced Jeff Williams (Senior VP of Operations) to talk about the importance of research kit. Research kit’s aim to provide a powerful tool for medical research. Advancing how we gather data & making it easier for app developers to build these amazing applications. They went onto showcase some of these apps behind major diseases such as Parkinson’s & Diabetes.
The “New” Macbook-
One of the more surprising announcements was the all new Macbook that’ll be in the middle of the laptop lineup. This all new macbook as it was touted is the thinnest laptop that Apple now offers. Redesigned from the ground up to provide a more portable & powerful experience from battery to design.
From a pure engineering standpoint this laptop is an amazing feat as far as what they’ve crammed into while maintaining the power & battery life it offers. Some main takeaways from the Macbook are
$1,299 baseline price
13.1 mm at its thickest point
Available in Gold, Silver, and Space Grey
9-Hour Battery Life (Estimate)
All new keyboard/track mechanisms
USB C- All in one port
The all new profile does come at a cost. Your now limited to one “USB C” port that requires adapters to hook up USB, HDMI, and other devices. So port wise your very limited in this case with no other ports available outside of a 3.5 mm jack for headphones.
Other major technology integrated into the Macbook is the all new trackpad which integrates new sensors & haptic feedback to really verify your clicks/presses. On top of that you can use OS X settings panel to control the tension of the trackpad.
Tech-Spec wise here’s the breakdown for the baseline model.
Retina Display 2304×1440
1.1GHz Intel Core M (Turbo to 2.4GHz)
8GB of memory
256 PCIe-based onboard flash storage
Weight: 2.03 pounds
Wireless: Wi-Fi 802.11ac & Bluetooth 4.0 wireless technology
Most of the Apple Watch was already known from a design & information perspective. The two main aspects we were lacking in was the release time frame & price point.
Apple went onto reiterate their idea behind the watch & it being a personal device. They then went onto really specify their materials that go into each watch from the aluminum to steel. Even dedicated a section to showcasing WatchKit’s apps that have been developed thus far & how the interaction with the watch may look like.
Then it came down to brass tax.
Apple Sport Watch-
$350 for 38mm size
$400 for 42mm size
$550 for 38mm size
$600 for 42mm size
Apple Watch Edition-
Now each watch price not only depends on the size but the bands well from rubber to steel making it a very varying factor with prices across the board. More over the rumors surrounding the luxury end watch edition came priced at $10,000 to start & can go up to even $17,00 based on your customizations. This of course is very niche watch and Apple plans to offer this for a limited time to those who can afford it. Featuring 18K gold by itself already raises the price in this case your paying a premium for the right to own one of the exclusive watch editions. All watches feature the same specs only differing in material which the base is made of.
Release date wise pre-orders start on April 10th & set to ship April 24th.
All in all Apple’s Spring Forward event was nothing new under the sun. The exception of course really came in the form of the Macbook which leaves much room for question regarding the macs lineup & future of the Air. The Watch front pretty much secured all notions of price & estimated April release time. We got to get a better look at the overall experience & how well it integrates with iOS & the iPhone in general. Acting as an extension of our every day convenience and irony aside give us time back while tracking it.
Stay tuned for more coverage regarding the event & in-depth look at the announcements.
Apple has announced their March 9th event with the headline “Spring Forward”. The event will be live streamed via their site on March 9th at 10 a.m PDT. Timing wise its more than likely this event will center purely on the Apple Watch. Giving us further details on the product that was announced months ago with little details surrounding areas like price.
That said I’ll be covering the event live with commentary on all announcements made via the Youtube channel.
As far as what can we expect regarding the Apple Watch lets take a look at what we know first.
What We Know:
There’ll be three models of the smart watch. The Apple Watch (Base level), Apple Watch Sport (Fitness Model), and the Apple Watch Edition (High End Model).
Each watch model will feature straps which can be removed & swapped out for leather, rubber, and various other materials provided by Apple & 3rd party companies much like a standard watch.
The Apple Watches will feature Apple Pay allowing you to pay with your watch in hundreds of locations around the U.S.
Running a mobile version of iOS the watches will support apps specifically for the watch interface. Developers have access to a WatchKit in order to start app development.
You’ll be able to interact with the Watch via a touch screen or using the digital crown similar to what you’d use on a standard watch to adjust the time.
A set of sensors to monitor your physical activity will also be built in to the smart watch. Pedometer, heartbeat monitor, and so on.
What We Don’t Know:
The big question is regarding the price of the watch models. Estimated to range from $350-10,000+. The big issue here comes at the high end model the “Apple Watch Edition”. This is the first time Apple really is entering a luxury market, think of an actual watch thats built with 18K gold then add on the digital features. This is certainly a premium model & it’s price can’t be rightly gauged but more than likely we’ll be seeing something in the 1k+ range. Some argue Apple will offer a sort of upgrade program for this premium model others state that it isn’t like Apple to provide such a program. Then again its unlike Apple to offer a full 18K gold product to begin with. This smart watch is all new territory thats just now coming into public eye & anything can really go here when it comes to price on the Watch Edition. More than likely the Apple Watch & Sport will be the higher selling models for everyday customers.
Another big aspect of a smart watch is the battery life. Something you’d ideally be wearing all day needs to survive just that. Apple’s CEO Tim Cook has already been quoted stating
wind up charging it daily
Due to constant usage of the device so we’re estimating about 2.5-3.5 hours of usage at a constant rate. Obviously this would span out across the day if your using it on and off much like a phone. Heavier usage would drain it quicker but using at a glance now & again could certainly last you a majority of the day.
At the event we’ll be sure to hear the official shipping date of the devices. Early estimates were predicted that it would ship in April but with the event being held a bit earlier we may see a new launch date for specific models or a full scale rollout later in the month.
These are the big three questions that’ll all be answered at the event. Alongside recapping the watches capabilities & Apple’s strategy in this new market as they certainly aren’t the only competitors in the space with tons of new products announced from LG to the all new Pebble.
Stay tuned for the official coverage & commentary come March 9th.
LG at the Mobile World Congress event unveiled the all new LG Watch Urbane. The Urbane is a fully functional smart watch running Android that is encased in a luxurious case coupled with a leather strap.
Urbane is housed with a OLED display of 1.3-inches & powered by a 1.2GHz Snapdragon 400 CPU with 512MB of memory. Currently available in the two iconic silver & gold finishes. As of current the pricing & shipping information is yet to be announced. LG’s watch features an all metal design which is much more durable & timeless as far as aesthetics go. So far the long awaited Apple Watch coming in April is the closest we’ve seen to this sort of design. Urbane strikes this balance of a classy timepiece with the hardware & software of a 2015 smart watch.
As a time piece enthusiast myself I really enjoy the simplistic approach to the design while coupling advanced technology in the watch. They’re definitely advertising it as an everyday sort of wear be it for a casual or more formal like event. This is how I see a smart watch personally fitting into society. Something that is an extension to our technology we already have & exists in a seamless fashion of something that looks & feels familiar but functions efficiently.
Further tech specs reveal it’ll be sporting a 410mAh battery, the screen will featured a 320×320 resolution with a touch screen interface & possible navigation with the crown, a heart sensor, & will be water/dust resistance. Software wise it’ll be running standard Android Wear.
All in all this is the technology smart watch culture clashing with the classic time piece & producing something that is not only visually appealing but highly technical & useful at its core. As time goes on & the rest of the competitors ramp up production of their smart watches we’ll see how the space plays out. Until then LG Urbane watch certainly sits up there with Apple’s Watch in terms of elegance & sophistication while being coupled with great technology.
Apple has just closed with a market value surpassing $700 billion the first company ever in history to do so. The technology empire is now the first ever company to surpass such a milestone beating out the likes of Exxon Mobil, Microsoft, and Google. Recently disclosing their record breaking earning of $18 billion out of the $74 billion revenue they made silenced much of the press that forecasted Apple’s doom.
At the course Apple is going & with projected growth and product launches it isn’t inconceivable to think that they’ll be the first trillion dollar company.
To put things into perspective Apple as a company has the power to buy out its rival competitors such as Google or Samsung or for that matter both at their current market caps & still have billions left over. No big deal.
The bigger question going forward is their growth & future of the empire. With product launches such as the Apple Watch, future iPhone launches, and other avenues Apple may dive into can only lead to larger revenues. The question isn’t so much as what they’ll do from here but how high can the company go. Tim Cook Apple’s CEO recently made claims that they’re heading into their “biggest & boldest project ever.” with their recent investment into First Solar of $848 million to build a 1,300-acre farm of solar energy to power their all new HQ in California. This will lead to energy cost savings over time & ultimately money (not that they’re at loss of that).
Tim Cook recently went on to state in his interview at Goldman Sachs that he believe Apple can keep up their growth. More importantly that like Steve Jobs before him that Apple doesn’t believe in limiting themselves.
“We don’t believe in laws like the law of large numbers, Steve ingrained in us that putting limits on your thinking is never good.”
So whether its the Mac, iOS, or some other ecosystem Apple will focus on going forward we’re more than positive they’ll excel. Setting a new bar for competitors not just in the technology space but worldwide.
Thus begins the journey for the first ever trillion dollar company.