Apple unveils new iPhones for faster 5G wireless networks

This image provided by Apple shows a display of the new iPhones equipped with technology for use with faster new 5G wireless networks that Apple unveiled Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2020. (Apple via AP)
This image provided by Apple shows one of the new iPhone 12 equipped with technology for use with faster new 5G wireless networks that Apple unveiled Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2020. (Apple via AP)
This image provided by Apple shows the new iPhone 12 Pro phones that Apple unveiled Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2020. The higher-end iPhone 12 Pro with more powerful cameras comes in silver, graphite, gold and blue, and will cost $999. (Apple via AP)
This image provided by Apple displays features of the new HomePod Mini that Apple unveiled Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2020. The new HomePod Mini will cost almost $100. It will integrate Apple’s own music service, of course, with Pandora and Amazon’s music service in “coming months.” (Apple via AP)
This image provided by Apple shows the new HomePod Mini that Apple unveiled Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2020. The new HomePod Mini will cost almost $100. It will integrate Apple’s own music service, of course, with Pandora and Amazon’s music service in “coming months.” (Apple via AP)

Apple unveiled four new iPhones equipped with technology for use with faster new 5G wireless networks.

There’s the iPhone 12, with a 6.1-inch display, the same as the iPhone 11 but lighter and thinner, starts at almost $800 and the iPhone 12 Mini with a 5.4-inch display atalmost $700. A higher-end iPhone 12 Pro with more powerful cameras will cost almost $1,000; the 12 Pro Max, with a 6.7-inch display, will set buyers back almost $1,100. Apple said the phones should be more durable.

In a move that may annoy some consumers, Apple will no longer include charging adapters with new phones. It says that will mean smaller, lighter boxes that are more environmentally friendly to ship. Apple, however, separately sells two models of power adapter, priced roughly at $20 and $50.

Apple has one of the most loyal and affluent customer bases in the world, which has many analysts betting the next wave of phones will sell well. The iPhone remains the foundation of Apple’s business.

Apple boasted about the 5G capabilities and brought in Verizon CEO Hans Vestberg to champion the carrier’s network. 5G is supposed to mean much faster speeds, making it quicker to download movies or games, for instance.

But finding those speeds can be a challenge. While telecom operators have been rolling out 5G networks, significant boosts in speed are still uncommon in much of the world, including the U.S. There are no popular new consumer applications that require 5G.

The iPhone models unveiled Tuesday will launch at different times. The iPhone 12 and 12 Pro will be available starting Oct. 23; the Mini and the Pro Max will follow on Nov. 13.

That compresses Apple’s window for building up excitement heading into the holiday season. Consumers are generally expected to have less money to spend amid high unemployment and economic anxiety due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Updates in the new phones mostly amount to “incremental improvements” over predecessor iPhones, technology analyst Patrick Moorhead said, referring to 5G capabilities and the camera upgrades on the Pro. But he suggested that if carriers build out their 5G networks fast enough, it could launch a “supercycle” in which large numbers of people upgrade their phones.

Although other parts of Apple’s business are now growing more rapidly, the iPhone remains the biggest business of a technology juggernaut currently worth about $2 trillion, nearly double its value when stay-at-home orders imposed in the U.S in mid-March plunged the economy into a deep recession.

The pandemic temporarily paralyzed Apple’s overseas factories and key suppliers, leading to a delay of the latest iPhones from their usual late September rollout. The company also closed many of its U.S. stores for months because of the pandemic, depriving Apple of a prime showcase for its products.

Apple on Tuesday also said it was shrinking the size and price of its HomePod to catch up to Amazon and Google in the market for internet-connected speakers, where it has barely made a dent. Both Amazon and Google are trying to position their speakers, the Echo and Nest, as low-cost command centres for helping people manage their homes and lives. They cost as little as $50, while the HomePod costs almost $300.

The new HomePod Mini will cost almost $100. It will integrate Apple’s own music service, of course, with Pandora and Amazon’s music service in “coming months.” Apple didn’t mention music-streaming giant Spotify. It will be available for sale Nov. 6 and start shipping the week of Nov. 16.

The research firm eMarketer estimates about 58 million people in the U.S. use an Amazon Echo while 26.5 million use a Google Nest speaker and 15 million use a HomePod or speakers sold by other manufactures, including Sonos and Harman Kardon.

Michael Liedtke And Tali Arbel, The Associated Press

Technology

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Katrine Conroy
Katrine Conroy declared winner in Kootenay West

Preliminary results put NDP candidate firmly in the lead.

There are few details but neighbours a Second Avenue house in Chilliwack say a huge police presence descended on the home after shots were heard. (File photo)
RCMP looking for witnesses in $5000 auto part theft

Two catalytic converters valued around $5000 were taken Oct. 22

Mayor Bruno Tassone was presented with a poppy to launch the Castlegar Legion’s annual poppy campaign. Photo: Submitted
Castlegar Legion kicks off poppy campaign

Remembrance Day ceremonies will look different this year

NDP headquarters on election night, Oct. 24, 2020. (Katya Slepian/Black Press Media)
ELECTION 2020: Live blog from B.C. party headquarters

BC NDP projected to win majority government – but celebrations will look different this election

B.C. Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau outlines her party's climate action platform at Nanaimo's Vancouver Island Conference Centre earlier this month. (News Bulletin file photo)
Green leader Furstenau declared victor in her home riding on Vancouver Island

Cowichan Valley voters elect freshly minted party leader for her second term

NDP Leader John Horgan celebrates his election win in the British Columbia provincial election in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Horgan celebrates projected majority NDP government, but no deadline for $1,000 deposit

Premier-elect says majority government will allow him to tackle issues across all of B.C.

FILE – Prime Minister Justin Trudeau greets Premier John Horgan during a press conference at the BC Transit corporate office following an announcement about new investments to improve transit for citizens in the province while in Victoria on Thursday, July 18, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Trudeau congratulates Horgan on NDP’s election victory in British Columbia

Final count won’t be available for three weeks due to the record number of 525,000 ballots cast by mail

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Comedic actor Seth Rogen, right, and business partner Evan Goldberg pose in this undated handout photo. When actor Seth Rogen was growing up and smoking cannabis in Vancouver, he recalls there was a constant cloud of shame around the substance that still lingers. Rogen is determined to change that. (Maarten de Boer ohoto)
Seth Rogen talks about fighting cannabis stigma, why pot should be as accepted as beer

‘I smoke weed all day and every day and have for 20 years’

Provincial Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau speaks at Provincial Green Party headquarters at the Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe in Victoria. (Arnold Lim / Black Press)
VIDEO: Furstenau leads BC Greens to win first riding outside of Vancouver Island

Sonia Furstenau became leader of BC Greens one week before snap election was called

NDP Leader John Horgan elbow bumps NDP candidate Coquitlam-Burke Mountain candidate Fin Donnelly following a seniors round table in Coquitlam, B.C., Tuesday, October 20, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Horgan, NDP head for majority in B.C. election results

Record number of mail-in ballots may shift results

The Canadian border is pictured at the Peace Arch Canada/USA border crossing in Surrey, B.C. Friday, March 20, 2020. More than 4.6 million people have arrived in Canada since the border closed last March and fewer than one-quarter of them were ordered to quarantine while the rest were deemed “essential” and exempted from quarantining. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Majority of international travellers since March deemed ‘essential’, avoid quarantine

As of Oct. 20, 3.5 million travellers had been deemed essential, and another 1.1 million were considered non-essential

Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam responds to a question during a news conference Friday October 23, 2020 in Ottawa. Canada’s top physician says she fears the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths may increase in the coming weeks as the second wave continues to drive the death toll toward 10,000. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s top doctor warns severe illness likely to rise, trailing spike in COVID-19 cases

Average daily deaths from virus reached 23 over the past seven days, up from six deaths six weeks ago

Most Read