Apple unveils iPhone Xs and fall detecting Watch

Apple has unveiled larger iPhones and watches based on the design of current models, confirming expectations that the company would make relatively minor changes to its lineup.

The new phones, based on last year’s iPhone X which featured a major redesign, are named XS (priced at £999) and XS Max (£1,099). The new iPhone XS has a 5.8-inch screen size, while iPhone XS Max is 6.5 inch in size.

Apple said it was “taking the vision for the future of the smartphone to a new level“.

It added that they feature “stunning Super Retina displays, a faster and improved dual camera system that offers breakthrough photo and video features, the first 7-nanometer chip in a smartphone — the A12 Bionic chip with next-generation Neural Engine — faster Face ID, wider stereo sound, a beautiful new gold finish and introduce Dual SIM to iPhone”.

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The company also introduced a lower-cost iPhone the Xr (priced from £749), “integrating breakthrough technologies from iPhone XS in an all-screen glass and aluminum design with the most advanced LCD in a smartphone featuring a 6.1-inch Liquid Retina display and six beautiful finishes”.

Apple’s Series 4 watch (from £399) has been “redesigned and re-engineered to help users stay connected, be more active and manage their health in powerful new ways.

“While retaining the original iconic design, the fourth-generation Apple Watch has been refined, combining new hardware and software enhancements into a genuinely singular, unified form.

It added: “The stunning display is over 30 percent larger and seamlessly integrates into the thinner, smaller case, while the new interface provides more information with richer detail.

“Apple Watch Series 4 with watchOS 5 brings advanced activity and communications features, along with revolutionary health capabilities, including a new accelerometer and gyroscope, which are able to detect hard falls, and an electrical heart rate sensor that can take an electrocardiogram (ECG) using the new ECG app, which has been granted a De Novo classification by the FDA”.

“This is a pretty big deal,” said healthcare tech analyst Ross Muken, of Evercore. “This update really establishes the company’s increasing efforts to push the watch as a serious medical device. Apple seems to be diving into heart disease first, the most common cause of death around the world, making serious moves as a health company.”

The company also took the opportunity to add new features to its HomePod. Missing from the event, however, was an update to AirPods and any announcement of a rumoured wireless charging mat.

You can watch a 108-second summary of the announcements here.