Tim Cook, new Apple CEO, struck a humble, fanboy tone when he took the stage at his company’s iPhone launch event today. He stated simply, "I love Apple. I consider it the privilege of a lifetime," in his first big product unveiling since he took the reins of the company from co-founder Steve Jobs.
While there was no iPhone 5, Apple instead announced the new iPhone 4S, whose "under the hood" improvements on the current generation iPhone includes a retina display and dual-core processor, doubling the device-speed of its predecessor. Its new A5 processor is touted by Apple as seven times faster at rendering graphics, twice as fast at processing data, and with an 8 megapixel camera that shoots HD and image stabilization, as YouTube awaits your uploads.
One of the coolest new innovations is the virtual personal assistant dubbed "Siri," who takes voice commands and translates speech to text.
"I've been in the AI field a long time. This blows me away," commented Scott Forstall, SVP of Apple iPhone software, as he queried Siri in a live demo, "find me a Greek restaurant in Palo Alto." Up came Yelp-friendly restaurants, along with response to a second Forstall inquiry about the weather. Siri also boast a "fantastic battery life," so conversations can last eight hours before recharging.
After about 15 minutes, Cook handed the meeting to Apple execs who talked about new iOS 5 software that eliminates the need to sync devices. The iPhone 4S is a "world phone," making it easier to place calls on more global wireless networks. It goes on sale Oct. 14 for AT&T, Verizon and Sprint (big news) with a starting price of $199 for the 16 GB model up to $400 for the 64 GB model. "What sets [these products] apart and what puts Apple way out front is how they're engineered to work together so well," said Cook.
On the same day that Apple broke into the top 10 on Interbrand's Best Global Brands ranking, Apple execs also talked up the ability of iCloud to seamlessly synchronize downloads and content across devices, as demonstrated below.
Now, for fans, the big wait: Apple's iPhone 4S is available Oct. 14, while iOS 5 and iCloud both launch Oct. 12.