By Ricky Browne
In its first all-online launch programme, Apple has launched its latest watch and iPad — but not the much anticipated iPhone.
In a smooth streamed production led by CEO Tim Cook from the Apple headquarters, the new Apple 6 watch got prime position, especially with its new function of being able to measure blood oxygen. The feature takes approximately 15 seconds to process, and provides the user with a new health measure that could potentially save lives.
“With Apple watch series 6 you can measure your blood oxygen straight from your wrist,” Apple says. And also while you sleep. It is a key measurement that gives information about your breathing and respiration.
At a time when the whole world is concerned about the coronavirus pandemic, Apple said that this new functionality could help people measure their ability to fight the disease.
Apple has perhaps identified a great market for its watches, concentrating not only on the fitness aspect but now increasingly on the health aspect. And if it is correct, that market will far exceed the market for iPhones, as people struggle to find a safe path through this uncertain period.
In another nod to the virus, the watch will take note of when you are washing your hands and encourage you to wash them for 20 seconds in keeping with the coronavirus protocols.
Two other versions of the watch, The Apple SE and the Apple 3 watch are also on offer, without for a lower price and for less functionality.
The watch also offers greater fitness functionality and a wider array of both watch faces and straps.
Meanwhile the new iPad 8 generation came in with much greater speed and much improved functionality taking performance “to the next level”. The iPad OS will be available from Friday at a price of US$329 or the iPad Air from US$599 from next month.
But it was perhaps the absence of a new Apple iPhone that may have created the greatest stir. Before the launch, many analysts and tech tans were wondering what new functionality a new iPhone could possible offer.
In fact, rather than mention the iPhone, the production highlighted its absence, by creating a watch for children or older family members that did not require them to have an iPhone at all.
Meanwhile, Apple has said it intends to be carbon-neutral by 2030 and is increasing its use of recycled metals and other inputs in its production process.