Apple iPhone 11 and iOS 13 updates: what you need to know

On September 10, 2019, Apple announced their new fall tech lineup and software updates to their operating system– iOS 13. The new announcement has been met with mixed reviews of excitement and skepticism but– either way– the tech giant has lived up to their reputation of innovation. reports an overview of the newly announced iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and iPhone 11 Pro Max.

The iPhone 11 is set to retail at $699 and boasts many new updates to its cameras and photo/video editing abilities. The camera has wide and ultra-wide lenses, and also features a “dark mode” that “automatically brightens photos in low light situations,” reports.

Other improvements to the iPhone 11 include a 12 mp front-facing camera, 4k video, a more durable aluminum finish, and longer battery life (up to 1 hour more than the XS). The new phone will also be available in a variety of colors: black, white, red, purple, green, and yellow.

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The iPhone Pro and Pro max have a few additional features. The phones– priced at $999 and $1,099, respectively– include  “a new triple camera system — a triangular array of lenses in a rectangular camera bump.” Additionally, the screen on the phones features a Super Retina XDR display, which DisplayMate has rated the “highest ever A+ grade” for the screen’s brightness, color accuracy, and resolution.

The Pro and Pro Max models both come in popular (and newly popular) colors, such as a new midnight green color, a refreshed space gray, refreshed silver, and a new gold finish.

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Although the new devices incorporate impressive upgrades, iPhone users do not need to rush to the store to enjoy Apple’s latest upgrades.

At the September 10th keynote event, CEO Tim Cook also discussed the upgrades to iOS 13.1, which any user can currently download free of charge.

Some of the notable changes to the platform include the following:

  • “Dark mode” — this enables users to opt for a true black theme for their applications such as messages and safari, which increases visibility and reduces eye fatigue. 
  • Notes App — shared folders make it easier to collaborate, new checklist options are more organized and user-friendly, and gallery view and search options help you to find the note you are looking for.
  • Photos and camera software — this includes new portrait mode lighting options and redesigned photo and video editing features
  • Maps — Now has a 3D view of street views, the option to “favorite” locations for faster access, and a “collections” option, which allows users to compile a list of addresses for a particular area (which is very helpful when traveling) and is shareable with other users
  • Messages — You can now share your name and photo and control how your contact name comes up in your friends’ messages. Also, there are new customization options to Memoji and a sticker pack of your Memoji in your messages app. 
  • Airpods — the new update allows Siri to read text messages to the user without them having to look down at their phone. Also, users can play music/audio to more than one pair of Airpods for optimal sharing. (Apple)

Apple also announced services such as Apple Arcade and Apple TV plus. Apple Arcade is a $4.99 monthly subscription that would allow users to access over 100+ games without advertisements. They also announced Apple TV plus (also $4.99/month) which “will launch with nine confirmed titles, including a drama starring Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston, a post-apocalyptic thriller starring Jason Momoa, a comedy about poet Emily Dickinson starring Hailee Steinfeld and a book-focused series with Oprah Winfrey called Oprah’s Book Club,” confirms.

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The bottom line…

These new devices, software, and services are exciting, but skeptics have written off many of the new features as unoriginal. Many of the new software upgrades– such as the “QuickPath” typing, which allows users to form words by simply dragging their fingers from letter to letter– has existed on Android devices for years as well as on third party iPhone keyboard extensions. Also, their voice recognition technology and integrated smart home device technology is only catching up to other competitors, such as Amazon. As for their new services, it remains to be seen whether subscribing to yet another streaming service will be worth it to the average consumer.

Though they continue to excite consumers with upgrades and new, fashionable devices, Apple could very well fall behind in the race to revolutionize the way consumers use technology in their day-to-day lives.

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