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UPDATE: Apple Unveils New Products -- Shares Down

September 12, 2018 - 2:29 pm
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(CBS News) -- Apple on Wednesday announced the latest additions to its product lineup, including new iPhones, a new Apple Watch and upgrades to its HomePod system. Additional coverage is at our sibling website CNET, which had a team of reporters live blogging from Apple's headquarters in Cupertino, California, starting at noon Eastern/9 a.m. Pacific.

Here's how the event unfolded:

Wall Street: "Meh"

Wall Street seemed ho-hum on Apple's product lineup, with the company's shares closing down slightly Wednesday afternoon.

Shares opened at $223.44 and rose briefly after the event started at 1:00 p.m. But they soon dipped, closing at $221.07, or 1.2 percent lower.

The lack of detail on some hotly anticipated items, like wireless charging, updated earbuds and Apple's suite of shows, was troubling to some.

"We view the absence of commentary on AirPods and AirPower as disappointing," CFRA analyst Angelo Zino said in a note.

Still, the company did enough to keep its top-selling products competitive, said tech analyst Patrick Moorhead, president of Moor Insights and Strategy.

"I believe the new dual-SIM feature will expand [Apple's> reach in India and its competitiveness in China," he wrote in a note, adding that the improved camera "should make it more competitive with Samsung and Huawei."

He had high praise for the Apple Watch Series 4, which he predicted "will sell better than all previous models." Because of its health features in particular, "I can see kids buying one for their parents and grandparents," he said.

All the new iPhones

To recap: Apple's new iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max will be available in stores starting Sept. 21, and they can be preordered starting Friday, Sept. 14. They come in gold, silver and gray.

The iPhone XR -- the budget version -- goes on sale in October. Preorders start Oct. 19, and it lands in stores Oct. 26.

The Apple Watch 4 can be preordered this Friday, Sept. 14, and will ship starting Sept. 21.

Following the presentation, CNET reporters went into the demo room to test out Apple's new products.

Theft, loss protection

AppleCare now comes with loss and theft insurance, a user noted on Twitter. It costs $299, a bump of $100 over the standard price.

The event ended a little early, reporters noted--without the "one more thing" at the end that observers have come to expect. A few updates that were widely anticipated, like wireless charging for Apple's earbuds, were also left untouched.

Surprisingly, perhaps, Apple executives also didn't highlight the company's growing assortment of services, like music, payment and online storage. That ongoing strategic shift has been key to Apple becoming the first U.S. company valued at $1 trillion.

Tim Cook says Apple has enhanced its HomePod smart speaker. The product now lets users search for songs using lyrics, make and get calls, and "ping" their other Apple devices around the house to help locate them.

Apple just introduced its cheapest new phone, the iPhone XR. It comes with a glass back, edge-to-edge 6.1 inch LCD display, liquid retina display and a single 12 megapixel rear camera. The body is smaller than the iPhone 8, Williams says.

Available colors: white, black, blue, coral, yellow and red.

t, too, will have a longer battery life than the iPhone 8.

Apple giveback: A program to repurpose old devices

Apple's new iPhone will be created using 100 percent renewable energy, says Lisa Jackson, Apple's head of environment, policy and social initiative. She noted the Cupertino campus, as well as all Apple's facilities--retail stores, data centers and offices-run on renewable energy.

The new iPhone also makes use of recycled tin and bio-plastics, she says.

"We hope to one day eliminate our need to mine new materials from the Earth," Jackson says.

(Just days ago, California--where Apple is based--announced a goal to be carbon-neutral by 2045. )

Under its new "giveback" program, Apple lets people bring their old devices to a store, or mail it in. The company will check it out -- if it's in decent shape, the phone will go to other users or be recycled.

"Now let's talk about battery life"

The iPhone XS will last 30 minutes longer than the X, and the Max will provide an additional hour-and-a-half, Schiller says.

The phone can also handle two SIM cards, allowing someone to keep two numbers on two different plans in their phone, such as a local number and an international number. This requires support from carriers, which Apple will continue to work on, Schiller says.

What about the price?

The XR will start at $759, the XS at $999 and the XS Max at $1,099, Williams says. The base model contains 64GB of storage, with capacity going up to 512GB. Ordering begins this Friday, and phones will ship next week.

Apple is clearly unafraid of moving its phone prices further into the four-figure range.

Expanded camera options

The iPhone XS has a new dual-camera system. It's a 12 megapixel, wide-angle camera with a 12 megapixel telephoto lens. "You're going to be blown away with the pictures you can take with the iPhone XS," Schiller says.

Schiller touts the iPhone camera's popularity with photographers of all stripes, including professionals, and notes that a recent Time magazine cover was shot with an iPhone.

The new phone camera will have a larger sensor on the wide-angle camera and much wider aperture--f/1.8 and f/2.4 at telephoto. That means much easier photography in low light. The camera also makes use of "smart HDR" to capture more details, like shadows and skin tones.

Schiller shows a series of photos taken with the iPhone XS, raving about its "breakthrough" technology.

A remarkable new feature allows the user to take a photograph and adjust some cameras settings, like depth of field, after it's been taken.

"This is a new era of photography," Schiller says.

Games of all kinds

Todd Howard of Bethesda Game Studios touts the new iPhone's video-gaming capabilities. Showing a scene from the company's forthcoming "Elder Scrolls" game, he says, "Scenes like this used to be only possible in your living room...We can do them now on your iPhone."

Former NBA all-star Steve Nash also made an appearance to demonstrate an augmented reality, or AR, basketball feature. The app, Home Court, analyzes your basketball shot.

AR is an important new feature of the iPhone XS.

200,000 photos

Powered with Apple's new "A12 Bionic" chip, the latest iPhones can store up to 200,000 photos, Schiller says.

It's nine times faster, but with much less energy than the current model.

The iPhone XS

Next up, Cook introduces the new iPhone: "Today we're going to take iPhone X to the next level."

In a development many Apple fans are sure to love, the iPhone XS and XS Max are waterproof--tested in all kinds of liquids, including salt water and beer.

The Max will have a display measuring 6.5 inches--the largest ever on an iPhone. But it won't be physically larger. Apple basically took the form factor of the prior model and expanded the screen to go corner-to-corner.

"It is made of a surgical grade stainless steel. It has a gorgeous new gold finish on the front and on the glass. It's the most beautiful iPhone we have ever made," said Philip Schiller, head of marketing.

The Series 4 will be available Sept. 21, starting at $399.

This also drops the price for previous Watch models, with the Series 3 now costing just $279.

What about your data?

1:29 p.m.--

With Apple's new suite of health-focused features, it's worth considering data security. Williams tells the crowd the health data from the watch is encrypted on the device and in the crowd.

"At Apple, we believe your personal information belongs to you, and you should decide who gets to see it," he says.

The watch comes in three colors: gold, silver and gray. There's also the option of one of Apple's metallic watch bands.

Apple Watch gets larger display, ECG

The event starts with Cook describing updates to the Apple Watch. The watch, which did not exist as a category a few years ago, is now not just the top smart watch in the world but also the top-selling watch, period, Cook reminds the audience.

Chief Operating Officer Jeff Williams introduces the Apple Watch Series 4.

The new watch has a much larger display--30 percent bigger--and a 64-bit processor that makes it twice as fast as the current model, he says. There's also a digital crown, which allows you to scroll through displays on the watch.

It comes with a number of built-in health features. The watch now tells you automatically if your heart rate is elevated.

"It's a profound change. Apple Watch has become an intelligent guardian for your health," Williams says.

The watch is also able to detect falls. If it detects that the wearer fell and then didn't move for a minute, it will automatically call someone. It can tell you if your heart rate is too low, and can even do an electrocardiogram, or ECG. "This is the first ECG product offered over-the-counter, directly to consumers," Williams says.

That's a disputed assertion, however. The makers of KardiaBand--a wearable ECG band for the Apple Watch--contacted MoneyWatch after Apple's event. Their product, which costs $199, received over-the-counter FDA clearance in 2014 and has been generally available since last November, the company said.

2:59 p.m. -- Apple CEO Tim Cook tweeted, and deleted, what seemed intended to be a reply to someone's question.

"No. Who can get it here quickly?" the message read. It managed to get nearly 640 retweets before Cook deleted it.

Bundle up

Many are asking if this will be the year Apple rolls out a bundle of services.

Apple, which made its name selling hardware, has expanded into subscription services in recent years with Apple Music, Apple Pay and more becoming an increasingly important revenue stream for the company. Reports surfaced in June that Apple was considering a single subscription bundle that would combine its still-in-progress TV shows, music and other subscription services.

One reason: Subscriptions could make Apple a lot of money, Wall Street says.

"With iCloud, Apple Pay, Apple Music and other digital downloads driving this vast ecosystem, we believe this segment could top $50 billion of revenues by [the company's 2020 fiscal year>," technology analyst Daniel Ives wrote in a recent research note.

"I think they absolutely should and need to expand services -- it's as much of a convenience for their users as anything else," Stephen Beck, founder and managing partner of cg42, a management consultancy, told CBS MoneyWatch. "The difference is the value of those services: If you compare the way Amazon looks at Prime, the value of those services layer value on top of each other. Apple [services> feel smart and connected, but they're independent of each other."

Attendees are starting to fill in seats at the Steve Jobs Theater at Apple Park in the company's Cupertino headquarters.

Possible price points

Analysts with investment bank UBS predict the new iPhone models will come in at base prices of $699, $969 and $1,069.

That would surely boost the current highest price of Apple's most expensive iPhone, the iPhone X, which currently starts at $999 and goes up to $1,149. Despite much speculation at the X phone's launch that it would drive away customers, the opposite has happened, with the X becoming Apple's best-selling phone ever.

Going dark

The Apple store deliberately went offline for several hours Wednesday morning ahead of the event.

The storefront was replaced with a message reading, "We'll be right back."

It's common practice for Apple to shut the online store for major media events, CNET reports. After the event, the store comes back online with whatever new products the company has just announced.

What’s to come from Apple?

The company is widely expected to announce at least three new iPhone models, including one with a 6.5-inch screen -- the largest by far for an iPhone -- and a redesigned Apple Watch. The company could also reveal new iPad Pro tablets and a revamped MacBook or MacBook Air, CNET reports.

Here's a detailed rundown of other possible new products, including higher-end AirPods, a new version of Apple's wireless charging pad and even a new Apple TV.

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