Apple unveils new iPhones, iPad Pro, Apple TV with Siri


Tim Cook unveils the iPad Pro.

Apple said on Wednesday it will make a larger-screen iPad tablet aimed at business users. The iPad Pro, as it’s called, will take advantage of new multitasking features coming to existing iPads. Apple CEO Tim Cook mentioned India first as he also unveiled new iPhones — 6S and 6S Plus.

Apple Inc also said it would update Apple TV with an App Store and a new interface that allows viewers to make requests through the Siri digital assistant and search for specific programmes and movies across apps.

The new version of Apple TV, which has been redesigned to focus on content will come with a new remote. Siri will now be able to search Apple TV for content on iTunes, Netflix Inc, Hulu and other apps on the new interface, Apple said.

“We believe it is the future of television,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said at a special event in San Francisco. 

A software update will enable iPads to run two apps side by side, something previously limited to Samsung and Windows tablets.

Apple called the device the “biggest news in iPad since the iPad”.

“The iPad Pro faster than 80% of the PCs portable PCs shipped in last 12 months… We can do things on an iPad you can’d do on a notebook,” Apple executive Phil Schiller said at the event.

With a larger screen on the new iPad Pro, apps running side by side will have more room to breathe.

The new iPad will have a 12.9-inch screen, compared with 9.7 inches for the current full-size iPad. It will have four speakers and options for a physical keyboard and a stylus, called Apple Pencil. Despite the larger size, Apple said it’s about the same weight as the original iPad.

The new iPad also marks Apple’s latest attempt to steal corporate customers away from Microsoft, whose personal computers have been business staple for decades. Microsoft makes a tablet designed for the needs of office workers called the Surface Pro 3 that sells at prices starting at $800. With a 12-inch display screen, the Surface Pro 3 is slightly smaller than Apple’s new tablet.
Apple CEO Tim Cook with announcing the new iPad Pro. HT Photo

Journalists and analysts gathered outside a century-old arena where Apple Inc began the special event and was expected to unveil a pair of new iPhones after annoucing the unveiling of the iPad.

Apple said a software update for the Apple Watch was allowing outsider developers to write more sophisticated apps.

With the update, outside developers can make apps specifically for the watch and interact directly with its sensors and controls. The new software will be available as a free download starting next Wednesday.

There are now 10,000 apps designed for the watch, including ones from Facebook and GoPro – the later using the watch’s screen as a viewfinder for the video camera. Apple says the new capabilities will also allow additional health-related apps.

Apple is widely expected to keep the size of the phones the same but upgrade it with an improved camera and Force Touch, a display technology that responds differently depending on how hard users press their screens.

The device is expected to gain an App Store and an interface that allows users to make requests through the Siri digital assistant and search for specific programs and movies across apps. The company may also discuss the device’s role as a hub for gaming.