The new iPhone 14 is displayed alongside the new Apple Watch 8 Series and new AirPod Pros during a launch event for new products at Apple Park in Cupertino, California, on September 7, 2022. Apple unveiled several new products including a new iPhone 14 and 14 Pro, three Apple watches, and new AirPod Pros during the event. -AFP

iPhone 14 with emergency SOS function, Apple Ultra Watch unveiled

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The new iPhone 14 is displayed alongside the new Apple Watch 8 Series and new AirPod Pros during a launch event for new products at Apple Park in Cupertino, California, on September 7, 2022. Apple unveiled several new products including a new iPhone 14 and 14 Pro, three Apple watches, and new AirPod Pros during the event. -AFP   

Cupertino: Apple launched new smartphones Wednesday at prices similar to recent models despite inflation and supply chain woes, while unveiling a premium digital watch with a price tag to match.

While a 90-minute presentation at the company’s California headquarters did not include any surprise reveals, the tech giant did unveil new digital identification system to obviate the need for a physical sim card.

The company’s newest smartphone, the iPhone 14, costs $799 for the base model — the same price as the current version, while a premium iPhone 14 Pro Max will go for $1,100.

The set of updated products, which also includes new earbuds, is designed to keep customers loyal to its lucrative technology ecosystem.

“Apple continued its strong growth in the first half of 2022, driven by robust demand for the iPhone 13 — which was the best-selling smartphone worldwide,” said Le Xuan Chiew, an analyst at Canalys.

A view of the new iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus are displayed during an Apple special event on September 07, 2022 in Cupertino, California. Apple unveiled the new iPhone 14 as well as new versions of the Apple Watch, including the Apple Watch SE, a low-cost version of the popular timepiece that will start st $249. -AFP
 A view of the new iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus are displayed during an Apple special event on September 07, 2022 in Cupertino, California. Apple unveiled the new iPhone 14 as well as new versions of the Apple Watch, including the Apple Watch SE, a low-cost version of the popular timepiece that will start st $249. -AFP

The ability to keep the iPhone prices flat reflected the benefits of diversifying the supply chain to India after China’s zero-tolerance Covid policies crimped production there, the analyst said.

Wedbush analyst Dan Ives said the launch event underscored Apple’s logistics strength.

“Taking a step back, launching 3 new core hardware products within the Apple ecosystem despite the biggest supply chain crisis seen in modern history is a major feat for Cook & Co., especially with the zero Covid shutdowns in China seen in April/May,” Ives said.

Features of the new iPhone 14 include a more durable battery and new photographic capacities to capture “ultra wide” scenes and low-light settings.

The phones also contain an “emergency SOS” function to enable messaging to emergency services when outside of Wifi coverage.

The iPhone 14 Plus comes in a giant 6.7-inch (17-centimetre) screen that offers a better experience when playing games or watching videos.

The new Apple Watch Ultras are displayed during a launch event for new products at Apple Park in Cupertino, California, on September 7, 2022. Apple unveiled several new products including a new iPhone 14 and 14 Pro, three Apple watches, and new AirPod Pros during the event. -AFP
The new Apple Watch Ultras are displayed during a launch event for new products at Apple Park in Cupertino, California, on September 7, 2022. Apple unveiled several new products including a new iPhone 14 and 14 Pro, three Apple watches, and new AirPod Pros during the event. -AFP 

Company officials touted new digital watch products with enhanced features. The Apple Watch Series 8 — which can monitor body temperature and other body functions — prices at $400.

The company also unveiled the Apple Watch Ultra, priced at $800, which includes a battery with enough lifespan for hardcore athletes “to complete a long-course triathlon,” according to an Apple press release.

Neil Saunders, analyst at GlobalData Retail, described the new offerings as having “incremental improvements rather than groundbreaking new innovations,” adding that the company “has done enough to drive demand by persuading consumers to upgrade and indulge in its new products.”


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