Well, September has well and truly arrived, and with it the big event of the year – we're talking about the Apple event on Tuesday the 12th of September of course!
Whether you're an Apple lover or not, it's hard to miss this massive date in the calendar, since it heralds the arrival of the latest batch of tech, including the latest iPhones. And yes, thankfully, they're still called iPhones and we don't have any fancy new names to remember – woohoo!
Since Apple like to work on non-UK time for these events, the chances are you were already tucked in for the evening with a cuppa and a bit of Netflix (or maybe a PSL? Too late for caffeine?) Anyway, if you missed the excitement, we've got the lowdown on how things went, what was announced, what's new and when you can expect to get your mitts on everything.
iPhone 15 & iPhone 15 Plus
As you might expect, the latest batch of iPhones was the biggest drop of the evening – iPhone 15 and the rest of the family, to be precise. Apple have stuck pretty closely to their previous patterns, so the base model will be iPhone 15, with iPhone 15 Plus offering pretty much the same tech, but with a bit more screen to it, since the former measures in at 6.1-inches, while the latter is 6.7 inches.
But what else is new?
Since we're sure you're dying to know, the latest colour range from iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus includes a classic black (the everyman's choice, of course) alongside a range of muted, pastel shades including yellow, green, blue, and that all-important Barbie pink (thought it's paler than the regular Barbie shade).
The colourful part of the newest design is made using superfine metallic ions, which are embedded into the glass black to achieve the five gorgeous shades, alongside a lovely textured matt finish. And the result is rather nice, in our humble opinion.
Elsewhere, the frame is made of seriously durable aerospace-grade aluminium (so if you ever book that flight to Mars, you know your iPhone 15 will be nice and safe.) Seriously though, the aluminium is 75% recycled, which is a nice eco-friendly touch that feels almost as good as this handset's new contoured edges.
Skipping straight to the techy bit, both iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus will run using Apple's own A16 Bionic processor – yep, the one that was only available on iPhone 14 Pro models last year.
What does this mean for performance? Basically, you'll get a speedier phone that's better at multitasking and can work some small wonders with its camera. It also works beautifully to improve overall battery life and fuel Dynamic Island – last year, again, only available on Pro models.
While Dynamic Island isn't a hardware update, it's a significant (and useful) little tool that makes using your iPhone a doddle. It's where you can spot your active calls and manage your music and will even expand to show you bits of relevant stuff as and when you need it – so it's visual, more than anything, but pretty handy.
One of the biggest hardware changes we've seen from Apple for a while might actually be a bit controversial though – since iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus (well, the whole range, really) have done away with the Lightning port, and have switched over to USB-C. You might be surprised to hear that this is in line with their other tech, but the change likely follows due to some adjustments to European regulations.
Even though the word "phone" is right there in the name, chances are you probably make fewer calls and take more photos on your iPhone 15 or iPhone 15 Plus. Lucky for you, there have been some improvements to the camera specs on board.
Both devices feature an f/1.6 48MP main camera and a 12MP telephoto camera with up to 2x optical zoom, which improves upon the 14 range last year and means better, easier snapping for all.
iPhone 15 Pro & iPhone 15 Pro Max
As predicted, the latter half of Apple's latest family of phones are to go by iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max – and are sized exactly like the rest of the family, at 6.1-inches and 6.7 inches respectively.
Much like usual, these two devices are a little heavier on the specs – but actually weigh less to hold than any other Pro model before them. Here's what's changed:
Apple have stuck to their classic, sleek design rules for iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max but made a fundamental change that makes for a more durable and lightweight device – they've switched from a stainless steel frame to a titanium one. And not just any titanium, either. It's a gorgeous, brushed, aerospace-grade alloy available in four shades: black, white, natural and blue.
That stronger material also means these devices have a slimmer bezel, so there's a little more screen to see despite the devices sharing the same dimensions as last year's 14 Pro and 14 Pro Max.
Elsewhere, you'll also notice that the ring/silent switch that's familiar to iPhone users has been changed into an action button. You can now use it to toggle the volume on and off, or for customisable actions like opening the camera. It's up to you since you can personalise what it does.
iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max introduce a next-level bit of silicone from Apple in the form of the A17 Pro chip (no more Bionic, it would seem!) Apple called it the faster chip ever, and it does sound quite impressive, allowing the Pro and Pro Max devices to run games like Assassin's Creed – which were notably designed for consoles, so are pretty hefty bits of software to run.
The A17 Pro takes everything Apple is already good at and improves upon it, redesigning the way the chipset works to enhance performance, graphics, gaming, speed and battery life.
And as we mentioned before, the switch to USB-C is a move for the whole family and includes iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max.
Since plenty of iPhone fans choose a Pro model for its better camera features, it's no surprise that the cameras on board iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max are better than those on the iPhone 15 and Plus.
In this case, the differences amount to an additional 12MP telephoto lens, custom focal lengths, reduced lens flare coatings on each lens and some pretty impressive optical zoom specs. There's also better macro photography and LiDAR-enabled Night mode for portraits, which is honestly something so cool it looks like it belongs in a sci-fi film.
We're all about the mobiles here, as you probably know – but we have to throw in a mention of the other cool bits of tech Apple announced on Tuesday, don't we? Yes, yes we do.
Apple Watch Series 9
We've all gotten used to seeing a new Apple Watch drop each year, so the Series 9 isn't anything unexpected. However, it comes with some big promises that we're excited to see pan out – like Siri requests being processed directly through the watch for fewer delays and smoother animations.
The battery life of the new device is largely unchanged and sits at around 18 hours but has an improved adaptive brightness rating of up to 2000 nits all the way down to 1 nit. That's twice as good as the Series 8.
Apple also mentioned they were introducing a handy double-tap gesture, which can be used for answering or ending calls.
In terms of design, there are five gorgeous shades, including a Pink that will look lovely alongside the pink shade of iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus – since we all love a matching accessory, right?
Apple Watch Ultra 2
Still in the watch category, Apple Watch Ultra 2 features the same advanced S9 chip and features as the Apple Watch Series 9 but goes one better on the brightness with capabilities of up to 3000 nits.
The battery life of Ultra 2 is identical to the first-gen version, and the design is largely the same, too.
USB-C AirPods Pro
We had to mention this one since it's connected to the big USB-C change. Yup, these are a new version of the second gen AirPods Pro but seem to be largely unchanged aside from the carrying case now uses a USB-C port instead of a Lightning connector.
So far, it seems that regular AirPods and AirPods Max won't be making a similar update, but that might change at a later date. Wired EarPods, however, will also be getting the USB-C treatment.