It was time for another exciting Apple Event on Sept. 15, 2020 as we knew some updates were coming from Apple, there just wasn’t an agreement on which ones. A lot of the rumors were that this was going to be an Apple Watch and iPad event – leaving the iPhone 12 for October. As I bounced around to check out the rumors, I was pretty sure they all held up. The delays on the iPhone 12 and some hardware upgrades made sense for Apple to get the new watches and iPads on the market first. So let’s just jump right in.
If you want to catch the entire event yourself, Apple has it posted on their website or you can find it in the AppleTV app on any Apple device.
The Apple Event
This event was all about the Apple Watch(es), the iPad, OS updates, and the slick new services coming from Apple as Apple One. Here is a quick breakdown of what was revealed.
Apple Special Event – Apple Watch
Watch OS7 included some great updates like sleep tracking, hand washing detection, and VO2 Max for tracking your blood oxygen. There are more watch faces, which is always a nice touch as well. Family setup allows for those without a phone to have their watch set up for them. This allows parents to use their devices to set up and monitor the watch for their kids.
Apple Watch 6
Apple Watch series 6 provides a few upgrades from the series 5 but honestly hasn’t given me enough reason to upgrade from my series 5. If you’re still on a series 3 or earlier, then there are some serious reasons to upgrade, but even on a series 4, you might not see enough benefit to make the jump. The VO2 Max sensor and brighter “always-on” display pretty much are the only major upgrades. It starts at $399.
Apple Watch SE
What was a bit unexpected was the Apple Watch SE. This is a new budget level entry device, to get more people into the Apple Watch ecosystem. It uses the S5 chip which makes it more powerful than the series 3. This will be an attractive price point for kids or those that are looking for the basic features of the watch. I’ll be curious to see how people compare them over the next few months. It starts at only $279.
Apple Fitness+ and Apple One
Something that was hinted at in rumors but we didn’t see a ton of details on was the Apple One combination of services. This bundle of Apple services is what made the most sense to get Apple customers to be more comfortable subscribing to yet another service. What became really interesting was the addition of Fitness+, a new subscription workout service available from Apple.
This service is built specifically for Apple Watch. It connects your watch to the screen that you’re working out on. Everything is synced across and connected. This is a really interesting approach to putting your data on the screen as you work out. It’s better for you to just see this and I’m excited to hear feedback from those that try it out.
Apple One bundles up all these great subscription services in a simple plan. The graphic below helps break everything down. More details will be released this fall, so keep your eyes on the Apple One page.
Apple Special Event – Apple iPad
When it comes to the iPad, we didn’t expect a lot. Mostly hardware updates. And that is exactly what we got. iPad 8th Generation allowed for some growth on hardware with the A12 Bionic chip. It is 40% faster than last year’s model. Apple pencil support means this becomes a great option for creativity and schooling. These were all the expected jumps to the hardware since the true hero is iPadOS 14. Starting at just $329.
The iPad Air
The iPad Air was a bit of an unexpected product. With the new design, we are getting a preview of what we can assume will be the new iPhone 12. The colors, the shape, all give a nod for what we can see coming. The magic keyboard is supported and so is the new magnetic Apple Pencil. Basically this seems like it will become the new standard middle iPad and I’m hoping that means the Pro’s are getting a serious boost in the future.
Overall, we get new OS updates and a few hardware upgrades to the line up. If you haven’t done any hardware upgrades in a few years, you’ll probably see quite a jump in performance and hardware. All I know is that this event has me extremely excited for what we can expect from the October iPhone 12 event.