Apple sent out invites for a media event that will be held on Monday 21 March at the company’s Town Hall auditorium located on its 1 Infinite Loop campus in Cupertino, California. As with most Apple media events, it will kick off at 7pm in South Africa.
Several products are expected to be showcased at the event, including the new 9.7-inch iPad, the 4-inch iPhone SE, and new Apple Watch bands. There’s also a possibility that some Mac refreshes could be announced as the time is right for updates, but there have been no rumors confirming that is the case.
Headlining the event will be the 4-inch iPhone SE and a new 9.7-inch iPad. Rumors suggest the iPhone SE will look nearly identical to the iPhone 5s, but it will include new internal hardware that brings it in line with newer Apple devices. It is rumored to have an A9 chip, an improved camera, and NFC support for use with apple pay.
The new 9.7-inch iPad has been referred to as the iPad Air 3, but recent rumors have suggested it may instead be branded as an iPad Pro. The device is said to include many iPad Pro features, like a four-speaker design, a Smart Connector for connecting accessories, and display improvements for Apple Pencil support. It may also be the first iPad to feature a rear LED flash.
Apple also plans to introduce new Apple Watch bands at the event. Existing bands will likely be available in new colors and there may be new product lines, such as a rumored nylon band and a Space Black Milanese Loop.
Apple will be live streaming the event on its website and through the Apple TV.
iStore has announced that Apple Watch will be available at all iStores nationwide from Friday 23rd October 2015. Both the Apple Watch Sport and Apple Watch range will be available at launch, together with a full range of accessories.
With Apple watch, you can receive and respond to notifications in an instant. Track your daily activity and control your music using only your voice. Important information and essential features are always just a raise of the wrist away.
Discovery has announced that its Vitality members will receive a free Apple Watch if they would like. The Apple Watch will remain free as long as the member achieve their weekly goals.
The free Apple Watch is part of the recently launch Vitality Active Rewards program. The program requires members to achieve 4 weekly goals to keep the Apple Watch for Free. If the member does not achieve the weekly goals they will they have to a repayment for the Apple Watch. Below is a table showing the repayment amounts:
Vitality Active Rewards gives a personalised fitness goal to each member. The members can then earn weekly rewards, like a free drink at Vida e Caffè or Kauai, for achieving their goal. They can earn another reward if two or more of their friends also reach their fitness goals.
Vitality is a rewards program linked to Discovery Life and Discovery Medical Aid. To be a Vitality member you will need to have a Discovery Life or Discovery Health Policy. If you would like to take out a policy with Discovery to join Vitality please fill out the form below.
Apple yesterday released watchOS 2 to the public, making the first major update to the watchOS software available to all Apple Watch owners. The update requires iOS 9 and can be downloaded over-the-air through the Apple Watch app on the iPhone by going to General –> Software Update.
watchOS 2 was originally scheduled to launch on Wednesday, September 16 alongside iOS 9, but Apple delayed the launch in order to address a major bug that was found shortly before the software was set to debut.
As the first significant update to watchOS, watchOS 2 introduces a lot of new features to the Apple Watch, mainly through new developer tools. watchOS 2 brings native apps that run on the watch itself instead of the iPhone, and it lets developers access several sensors and hardware features including the Taptic Engine, heart rate monitor, microphone, and accelerometer.
Along with these features for developers, which will lead to more complex and full-featured third-party apps that run much more smoothly, watchOS 2 also includes new watch faces (photo album and time-lapse), third-party Complications, a tweak that makes the screen stay on for up to 70 seconds when activated, and Activation Lock.
There’s also a new Time Travel feature for viewing past and upcoming events in a watch face Complication, and a Nightstand mode that’s activated when the watch is charging, displaying the time.
Apple® today introduced beautiful new Apple Watch® cases and bands, available starting today, including new gold and rose gold aluminum Apple Watch Sport models. Since its release, Apple Watch has helped users receive and respond to notifications, interact by simply speaking to Siri®, conveniently use Apple Pay™ and track their health and fitness activity. watchOS™ 2 arrives as a free update on September 16 and further enhances this groundbreaking experience with new features and native third-party apps.
watchOS 2 makes apps faster and more fluid by running natively on Apple Watch, and introduces new watch faces, the ability for third-party apps to display information on the watch face as complications, and an innovative way to see future events, past headlines and more with Time Travel. watchOS 2 also includes new communication features such as the ability to respond quickly to Mail with dictation, Smart Replies or emoji, and Digital Touch enables more creativity with multiple sketch colors.
Expanded Assortment of Apple Watch Styles Apple Watch collections are expanding with new case colors and fresh new bands. With new standalone Sport Bands that range from rich vibrant colors to more neutral tones, Apple Watch is now more customizable than ever:
Apple Watch Sport’s lightweight anodized aluminum case now comes in two new beautiful colors, gold aluminum and rose gold aluminum paired with high-performance fluoroelastomer Sport Bands in lavender, antique white, stone and midnight blue.
Apple Watch Sport silver aluminum is now available with new orange or blue Sport Bands.
The stainless steel Apple Watch collection offers a variety of new bands including a two-toned Classic Buckle in black or saddle brown.
The Apple Watch space black stainless steel case is now available with a black Sport Band.
Apple Watch Edition now includes an 18-karat rose gold case with a midnight blue Classic Buckle.
Apple Watch bands for the entire Apple Watch Sport and Apple Watch collections are available to purchase separately, along with four new Sport Band colors in fog, turquoise, vintage rose and walnut. View the full line-up in the Apple Watch gallery.
watchOS 2 & Native Third-Party Apps watchOS 2, the first major software update for Apple Watch, available September 16, provides even more ways to customize with new watch faces including Photo, Photo Album and Time-Lapse. Watch faces are even richer with third-party app complications that let users see news headlines, upcoming flight times and more. Time Travel allows users to conveniently explore events in the future by scrolling the Digital Crown™.
Apple Watch app developers can now take advantage of key hardware and APIs to create fast, fluid, native third-party apps such as playing back video in the CNN app, using the speaker and microphone in iTranslate or measuring heart rate while cycling with Strava.
Pricing & Availability
Apple Watch is currently unavailable in South Africa.
There has been very little news leading up to Apple’s Media Event on the 9 September however the last few days revealed some interesting news which we will sum up below.
Apple announced iOS 9 at WWDC back in June but they always keep something back that relates to the new iPhone which will be the iPhone 6s and the iPhone 6s Plus. Most of the updates in iOS 9 are performance related.
iOS 9 Golden Master will be released to developers after the even with the final software being released to the public on 16 September.
iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus
Apple will unveil the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus. Most of the rumours say that Apple will give both devices an updated camera along with Force Touch. Being a minor update to the iPhone there will be little in the way of new hardware. Most of the changes will come within iOS 9.
Pre-Order iPhone 6s
iPhone 6s Pre-Order
iPad Pro & iPad Mini 4
Apple is expected to release a 12,9inch iPad Pro and a updated iPad Mini that follows the design of the iPad Air 2, a A9 processor and improved display.
Pre-Order iPad Pro
Pre-Order iPad Pro
Apple Watch & WatchOS 2
New rumours suggest that Apple will release a new range of Apple Watch Sport’s bands and Apple WatchOS 2. There have been some suggestions that Apple will release Apple Watch 2 however this seems hard to believe as there are still rumours of Apple Watch being released in some countries in the coming months. South Africa is not included in these countries.
Pre-Order Apple Watch
Pre-Order Apple Watch
The Big announcement is most likely to be the new Apple TV. The all new Apple TV is expected to have a full featured App Store and have Siri integration along with a touch-based remote. The new Apple TV is likely to also include a subscription based TV service. The subscription based tv service will not be available at launch and will likely not be available in South Africa.
The new Apple TV is suggested to retail for $149 and $199. Prices in South Africa will most likely be R2999 and R3999 due to the rise exchange rate.
Apple today announced Apple Watch will be available in Italy, Mexico, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland and Taiwan beginning Friday, June 26 from the Apple Online Store, Apple’s retail stores and select Apple Authorized Resellers.
There is still no word on when Apple Watch will launch in South Africa.