Apple’s live announcements have become a form of entertainment in and of themselves. From revolutionary ways to watch television to the mysterious Apple watch, here’s everything the company unveiled during their “Spring Ahead” announcement - and what you should care about.
A Cheaper Apple TV
Apple’s lowering the price of Apple TV from $99 to $69. This is great only if you don’t own an Apple TV yet and have been hindered by the price, but they likely made that move because they’re feeling threatened by other, more successful digital media players.
An Anti-Death App
Apple unrolled a new feature called ResearchKit, which allows medical researchers to create apps aimed at curing serious diseases such as Parkinson’s disease and breast cancer. Patients can opt in to participate, record their symptoms, and seamlessly send them over to medical researchers. This is a revolutionary way to improve clinical studies and provide researchers with a much broader, available swath of knowledge. This is probably the most exciting thing you won't be talking about.
More Play for CarPlay
CarPlay, which allows the iOS platform to be hooked up to a car’s dashboard, will be coming to “every major car brand” and 40 models total. If you’ve been wanting to check it out and holding off on buying a new car because of it, you might be in luck. For mostly everyone else, this isn’t game-changing.
The Revamped MacBook
The MacBook has been a laptop stalwart since its inception, and this new model (ships from April 10th) is an elevated specimen. Available in silver, space gray, and - the most enticing - gold, it boasts
technical features to go along with its slim 2 pound frame. It’s fanless, has a force-touch trackpad, a bigger battery (and with that, all day battery life) a full-size keyboard with LED lighting, and the thinnest retina display ever. Starting at $1,299, it seems a bit steep - but as the MacBook always proves, it’s more than just a pretty face.
The Apple Watch is Born
The Apple Watch has been the object of both speculation and ridicule since it was initially announced. It comes in three different models: Apple Watch Sport boasts a sleek aluminum case and starts at $349. The Apple Watch starts at $549 and is a stainless steel and black model. For the more discerning consumer, the Apple Watch Edition features 18K yellow or rose gold - and starts at $10,000.
The technological features include a customizable face, music you can control from your wrist, a gentle tap to alert you of notifications, a fully functional phone, a health and fitness companion, the ability to purchase using Apply Pay, a one-step Uber ordering process, and PassBook to pull up your boarding passes and tickets when traveling.
The futuristic companion is available for order on April 10th and will ship on April 24th. If you’re in the market for a luxury watch, we certainly don’t recommend the $10,000 version for style, but if you just want a wearable to tinker around with, it’s worth trying out a cheaper model. As far as ridiculous technology goes, at least it’s not as visible as Google Glass.
A Partnership with HBO
Apple partnered with HBO to create a new service called HBONow. Unlike HBOGo, which requires a cable subscription to watch HBO shows and movies, HBONow simply asks that you own an Apple device - and pay $14.99 per month. The streaming service will be available for U.S.-based customers starting in April.
To tease this out, they screened an exclusive trailer for Game of Thrones Season 5.
This is a great way to enjoy HBO if you don’t have a cable subscription, but, even so, most of us rely on a friend or relative’s HBOGo password to enjoy the medium. We can’t imagine many will be springing for the $14.99 per month.