Apple’s Sept. 9 keynote in Cupertino, Calif., unveiled the company’s next generation of the iPhone, along with the new Apple Pay and Apple Watch.
“This is the biggest advancement in the history of the iPhone,” said Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, in his keynote address.
The keynote started with the introduction of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. Both phones feature larger screen sizes – 4.7 inches for the iPhone 6 and 5.5 inches for the iPhone 6 Plus, longer battery life and are the thinnest iPhones yet. The next-generation iPhone features curved edges, with glass that curves around the edges of the phone, and a new Retina HD display. Updates to the camera include better photo and video image stabilization and an improved front-facing camera.
Both the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus will debut Apple’s new A8 processor, which is 25 percent faster than the iPhone 5S, according to CNN.
Cook then introduced ApplePay, a revolutionary mobile wallet service for the new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. The new service was highlighted as easy, secure and private, and allows a user to transfer credit card information and other payment data from one device to another.
The contactless payment system works through a radio antenna atop the new iPhones. Each payment will be private. The cashier will not see a customer’s credit card number, name or security code. Apple would also not see where a transaction occurred, what was purchased or how much it cost.
Initially, Apple Pay will be accepted by most vendors who accept contactless payments, which exceeds 200,000 vendors. It will also be integrated into online and in-app purchases by retailers such as Groupon, Uber and Panera, and the number of retailers is expected to grow.
The last half of the keynote was devoted to introducing the Apple Watch, which features a flexible, rounded display made from sapphire crystal, the second strongest material next to diamonds.
The Apple Watch can work in conjunction with a user’s iPhone 5, 5C, 5S or iPhone 6 to display iPhone notifications. The watch will be available in three different models: stainless steel, aluminum or 18k gold. According to CNN, the Apple Watch will be available in two slightly different sizes.
Pre-orders for the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus began September 12, and orders are expected to ship on Sept. 19. The Apple Watch is expected early 2015.