Apple had its historical release of fall products again this year and basically I would summarize this release as a win. They introduced their series 4 line of Smart watches and revamped their Smartphone lineup. The Smartphone’s stood out in this show as not only did they introduce new product but they smoothed out the lineup so that it is more logical. All in all, I would call this a win win situation for both the consumer and the company.
New Smartphones to meet various consumer Needs
Apple’s line of Smartphones appeared to be getting somewhat confusing before this show. The iPhone X represented Apple’s new phone direction but it was alone in the crowd of past phones. Now, there are three phones of this gesture based style plus the notch to distinguish the phones from those of the past. Each phone is targeting somewhat of a different market segment.
There is the 5.8” XS which for all intents and purpose is replacing the iPhone X. Then there is the Max, a 6.5” beast for the top end of the market and finally the iPhone R, a 6.1” IPS panel style phone in a variety of colours. Intended to be a starter priced phone, this phone sports the same A12 bionic chip of its higher end brethren. Although the camera is not dual lense capable, this phone is by no means a slouch.
Finally, Apple is retaining the iPhone 7 and 8 for the more budget conscious. The iPhone 7 will start at $629 and the phones will move from there through various price points. This is one of the broadest spec’d phone lineups Apple has had with price points for most.
The Three New Models in the Roundup
Apple has officially unveiled the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR at its Sept 12th launch for new fall products. The XS is replacing last years iPhone X. It will come with an Amoled display and use the A12 bionic chip. It is not considered wise to upgrade to this phone from the current iPhone X as they are so similar in both appearance and performance. However, the XS simply takes a well refined phone and smooths out any rough edges.
Unlike the Max, the XS is considered small enough for woman to comfortably hold. The XS simply goes another step with screen tech and provides a 6.5” bezel-less experience. The A12 has more than enough power for this screen and in fact Apple’s chip has more than plenty enough power for the foreseeable future.
Keeping the old
One would think that the above lineup of phones is more than substantive enough to meet a hybrid of needs and they are. However, to take this a step further in addressing the mid tier to lower end, Apple will continue to sell the iPhone 7 and 8, both well refined and regarded devices.
This strategy allows them to cover off the entire Smartphone universe with devices that are cool to both name and use. For many, the older devices are completely powerful enough to meet the needs if the day and morrow. This is a powerful lineup which at the same time is not one that is confusing. There doesn’t appear to be any cannibalizing in the lineup and it is just a matter of determining costs, style and functionality to get the phone that is good for you.
The Software Game
The one thing most developers have to be cognizant of is the ability of a unit to run today’s and tomorrow’s software adequately. Although some might decide on overkill, which in and of itself presents no problems, a device that is only going to run one iteration of an OS upgrade is likely untenable. Practically speaking, you would want your device to go at least two upward rounds in the OS upgrade game. All of these phones are equipped to adequately do this without lag or stagnation. For Apple, the third party developer and the consumer this can only be seen as a good thing. In other words, the Apple lineup is well future proofed.
In summary, this was a very positive and exciting announcement. The announcement of their iPhone lineup was spot on. It is a win win for both Apple, the developer/delivery and the consumer.
Although I’ve spent very little time discussing Apple Watch series 4, this has now become a mature, well rounded product that can meet many needs including the critical requirements around supportive healthcare. Apple simply seems to be on a good trajectory path which can do nothing less than provide substantive benefits to all concerned.