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Greetings from Cupertino!
Okay, we're actually a few miles from Cupertino, but close enough, right? Today was a big day for Apple, with a rehashing of the previously-announced iOS 7, a free surprise for all new iOS devices, and two new iPhones added to the lineup as of September 20.
For more on iOS 7, see our previous WWDC coverage. Otherwise, for Apple iCrack, read on:
The iWork suite is now free! Yes, free! Apple's productivity suite, which includes iPhoto, iMovie, Pages (word processor), Numbers (spreadsheets), and Keynote (slideshows) is now free for all new iOS devices, reports Ars Technica.
Why? Well, for one, lets just say that iWork hasn't blown anyone's socks off. Also, with Microsoft recently releasing Office for iOS, now is the time to lock down the market share.
I handed off my iPhone 3GS to my brother last year, and haven't looked back since. Now, I'm getting a bit of gadget envy.
The most important new feature for us security-conscious lawyers is the subdermal fingerprint "Touch ID" sensor that is built into the home button. No more swiping patterns, punching in PIN numbers, or hoping that Google's facial recognition unlock actually works.
Instead, you can just touch the home button. Your phone is unlocked or you can authorize purchases sans password. Now you can text and drive with fewer distractions. We've been waiting for biometric security since earlier this year, when Apple bought a fingerprint-recognition company and filed a patent related to the touch sensor/home button.
Also, iOS 7 will be released September 18, reports Engadget. It looks retina-burning:
The new iPhone 5S comes in gold, silver, and "space grey" (black). It contains a faster 64-bit chip, twice as fast as the 5C and now-defunct iPhone 5 and 40 times as fast as the original iPhone, reports Ars.
There is also a new "M7" motion processor, which should enhance the phone's utility in games and in fitness apps (including a new Nike+Move app).
Enhancements to the camera include a dual-LED flash, which adjusts its color to match the room's ambiance for a better-looking flash (and picture), bigger sensors, bigger (rather than more) pixels, better image stabilization and action shots, burst mode, HD slow-motion video recording, and a whole lot of other improvements that are too geeky to repeat.
Lets just say, it sounds like the best camera you can possibly get on a phone, and perhaps, the best phone you can get, period.
The price? $199 for 16GB, $299 for 32GB, and $399 for 64GB with a two-year contract.
The biggest mystery, coming into today, was what the iPhone 5C would be like, both on the inside, and on the wallet-side. Leaks ahead of Apple product releases are common, and we've already seen dozens of spy shots of the plastic-encased "entry-level" version of Apple's flagship phone.
Prior to today, Apple had never released an independent entry-level phone, instead relying on the prior year's flagship phone, sold at a discount, to fill that niche.
No more, kinda. The iPhone 5 is discontinued in favor of the 5C, which is nearly the same phone, but with a larger battery, neon plastic-coated polycarbonate-and-steel casing, and supposedly a better front-facing camera for FaceTime video chats. Meanwhile, the two-year-old iPhone 4S, for some reason, lives on, as a free-with-contract offering.
As for wallet-side, it'll come in at $99 for the 16GB and $199 for the 32GB on a two-year contract.
This may be Apple's most important phone, as they have been bleeding low-end market share to Android worldwide due to the high cost of entry into the Apple ecosystem.