All Hands on Tech – 6 minute Apple update announcement

Apple held another of their launch slash product updates on September 7th. But while they did quite a bit, which will fill you in on shortly, there’s also something very impactful that they didn’t do. What was it? Well, you have to watch the intro first.

So, by now we’re used to seeing these Apple rollouts where they present us with new product lines or updates to establish products in, of course, grand Apple style. September 7th, 2022 was no different. There’s a number of very innovative products and features to tell you about, but what might be most interesting about this rollout is what Apple didn’t do. They didn’t raise prices. With this past year of soaring inflation, people around the world have been holding onto their phones longer and it’s getting harder for Apple to persuade them to upgrade, but a price freeze from Apple, Steve Jobs wouldn’t be too happy with that. Anyway, onto the products.

First, the Apple Watch. This year’s Apple Watch is the Series 8. It has most of the usual expected bells and whistles, but it also boasts a new sensor. The temperature sensor, which has advertised helps you track your temperature, but using that, users can also track their menstrual cycles, ovulation, and fertility.

Then there’s the Apple Watch Ultra. Apple’s Premium watch this year. It’s designed for that adventurer slash mountain climber slash face jumper or scuba diver, in your life. Not only is it built rugged, but it has a physical button allowing you to interact with your watch at times when you can’t touch the screen, like when you’re dangling from a cliff or maybe scuba diving with the sharks. A few new features that have come to the Apple Watch Series 8 and Ultra of course, is crash notifications. The watch will detect an accident and call for help if you don’t cancel within a set amount of time. It also has emergency satellite SOS, which is a helpful safety feature, should you be attacked by a bear in an area with no cell service. You just point the watch to the sky and wait for the helicopter to arrive.

This is especially useful to me, actually. I have an annual father-son camping trip. We’re often in really remote areas and we seek destinations with no cellular service. The fathers and sons really enjoy this, but the mothers are not so fond of our inaccessibility. But with this new Emergency SOS feature, we’re much safer. We just have to remember to trigger the call while the bears trying to attack us. Bottom line, if you like, or you might need one-touch emergency service, then this is the upgrade for you. And if you have some really extreme adventures in your life, then check out the Apple Watch Ultra. Otherwise, it’s just a feature update.

Onto the AirPods. Now, to be honest, there’s not really much to see here or more accurately hear here, something like that, I guess. But basically, better noise canceling is the constant feature upgrade. The audio quality is better. It looks a little bit sleeker, but it comes down to better noise canceling. Otherwise, your current AirPods are working just fine.

And now, the star of the show, the iPhone 14 and the 14 Pro, like the Apple Watch I told you about earlier, the iPhone 14 and 14 Pro also come with crash detection and satellite SOS. If this is the kind of feature that really appeals to you, I must say you’re a very responsible person and thoughtful for thinking ahead like that. Next up, an exclusive to the Pro and the Pro Max is the Dynamic Island. If I had to oversimplify what it is, I’d call it a glorified notification center that can be used more than standard drop-down rectangle we’re used to. In typical Apple fashion, it’s a feature that seems like something Android has. They took the notch, they made it a pill shape and they added some screen around it, including on the top, but also in typical Apple fashion, it has some functionality that will quickly become a part of your day-to-day use.

For example, seeing that music is playing and being able to interact with the island to skip tracks or seeing a call come in as you already do, but it’s a better interface. It takes the eyesore of the notch and makes it interactive. We should be seeing more apps take care of it over time. I, for one, would love to be able to more easily check the status of my latest Uber Eats delivery, for example, without launching the app. But of course, what would an iPhone update be without another camera update? The main camera on the 14 and 14 Plus still captures 12-megapixel images, but it is said to now capture better photos and low light because of the improved sensor design. We’re also told that the front facing camera will now take higher quality selfies and photos. Many thanks to the auto focus that’s now built in.

Thanks auto focus. With the iPhone 14 Pros cameras. It now contains a sensor that allows you to shoot at 48 megapixels, which is a big improvement over the standard Apple 12-megapixel sensor. On the downside, this improvement is still far short of rival Samsung’s flagship phone, which shoot at 108 megapixels. Thanks for spoiling the fun, Samsung. Other improvements with the camera will be seen in video. Cinematic mode now shoots 4K, and there’s a new action mode which gives you gimbal performance without a gimbal. Once we can get our hands on an iPhone 14 Pro Max, we’ll be back with a more in-depth look at the camera because let’s face it, it’s a great camera and that’s really what this phone is about.

All in all, I think it comes to lifestyle and your need for a great camera. If you’re a rock climber who makes money filming wildlife, then this is probably the perfect camera for… sorry. You’re perfect iPhone for you. But if you’re a little safer and more sedentary and you’re pretty okay with the quality of your selfies, you probably don’t need an upgrade. Save your money and keep the romance burning with your current iPhone addiction. You look good together. That’s about it for this episode of All Hands On Tech. Please be sure to like and subscribe before you leave the building. And hey, please be careful out there, you adventure junkies.

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