As it happened: Apple's iPad launch - Live coverage - The Independent

As it happened: Apple's iPad launch

Coverage from Apple's launch event this evening.


  • 'We still have a lot to cover'. Source: Apple.com 
    by James Vincent

    So, that's it for the announcements today. Not too many surprise but some very nice updates across the board for tablets and laptops. The biggest news (but perhaps not the most exciting) is that the latest version of Apple's operating system, OS X Mavericks, will be available as a free update. 

    Here's the headline news from the event:

    • OS X Mavericks is free - updates work all the way back to 2007 devices and can be downloaded from the App Store
    • New iPad is called the iPad Air - M7 and A7 chip onboard, 20 per cent lighter than previous generation - prices start from $499 and it'll hit stores on November 1st.
    • iPad mini adds Retina display with $399 price tag also launching on November 1st; the original iPad mini will stay in the lineup with the price dropping down to $299.
    • MacBook Pros with Haswell chips on sale from today - 13'' model starts at $1299. $1999 for the 15''
    • Mac Pro prices starts at $2999 though no shipping date
    • Updates coming to iLife and iWork software - all for free and downloadable from today
    10/22/2013 7:17:08 PM
  • How to watch the event:

    Apple will be streaming the event live to Apple TV users or through the web - though you'll need to be using iOS or OS X to watch it. So, for those of you reading this from some sort of iDevice, click this link to head over to Apple's homepage. The stream should begin at 6pm GMT. 
    10/22/2013 3:12:28 PM
  • Apple's iPad (left) and iPad mini (right). 
    by James Vincent



    iPad mini or iPad vanilla?

    Whatever happens today, it's fairly certain that Apple will still be supporting two different sized tablets: the 9.7-inch iPad and the 7.9-inch iPad mini (are those sizes inversions of each other on purpose?). Choosing the right size is often best handled from the store - but to give you a first idea, here's David Phelan with a quick compare-and-contrast:

    In almost every way, the iPad mini is the winner. It’s lighter (so light you need to pick it up to appreciate it) slimmer and narrower [...So why would you choose the bigger iPad? I mean, it’s just heavier and pricer, isn’t it? Well, it is, but the bigger screen, already a gorgeously high-resolution Retina display, makes movie playback look fantastic and it’s certainly easier to watch for longer at this size. BBC iPlayer really shines. 

    10/22/2013 3:19:35 PM

  • The Hudl costs just £119, though at that price it won't be the fastest to use. 
    by James Vincent


    Tablets from Tescos: the Hudl
    Of course, it's not just Apple with new tablets coming out for Christmas - it's just about everybody. Notable among the entrants to the budget, 7-inch market include Argos and their £99 MyTablet as well as Tesco's Hudl. Interesting about this pair is the difference in approach - whilst it seems that Tesco are trying to channel users to their digital content, Argos doesn't own any comparable e-tailers and is simply trying to get a slice of the 7-inch market. 

    Tablets that will be more directly competing with Apple include Amazon and their updated Kindle Fire HDX range, and Google, who recently updated the Nexus 7.

    The second generation of Google and Asus's 7in tablet – the first sold a reported one million units a month and led Apple to create the iPad mini – is perhaps the final proof that Android is a serious player in the tablet market.



    Click here to read our full review of the Nexus 7.
    10/22/2013 3:34:07 PM
  • 17.46 - And we are now live from King's Place where the simulcast will be taking place. Lots of pleasant Apple folks handing out bottles of water and generally looking like brand ambassadors, and a big Apple logo looking over us.
    10/22/2013 4:47:21 PM
  • 17.54 - So, what would we like to see from Apple today? Rumours of an iWatch are continuing to swirl and, although it certainly looks like Apple are slowly putting one together, it's a near-guarantee that we won't be seeing one today.

    But what might show up? There have been murmurings that the tag-line for the event ("more to cover") might be significant. Perhaps a cover offering full-keyboard functionality?

    With so many tablets now on the market now and quite a few of these offering themselves as more than media-consumption-devices, it's thought that Apple might join the pack. Microsoft's Surface has long positioned itself as a device that you can use for work (integrated Microsoft Office helps there), and with even Nokia's newly-launched tablet included a "Power Keyboard" accessory it's entirely possible that Apple might go down a similar route. Let's see.
    10/22/2013 4:50:08 PM
  • 10/22/2013 5:00:59 PM
  • And we've begun - a repeat of the now-typical Jony ive style introduction from WWDC - lots of abstract nouns ('joy', 'abundance', 'focus', 'feel', 'delight') - and pretty abstract shapes. "There are a thousand no's for every yes" - Apple's promise in product design flashes up.
    10/22/2013 5:02:09 PM
  • Tim Cook is onstage promising us "amazing products" - but is kicking off with a few updates on products. Going over the launch of the 5c and the 5s - confirming that the end of the weekend saw 9 million iPhones sold (as ever no breakdown between the 5c and the 5s). Here's our review of those phones.
    10/22/2013 5:04:49 PM
  • Rip-roaring video showing off launch day for the iPhone. Lots of euphoric looking shoppers, set to "Life in Colour" by One Republic - "Whoa oh oh oh / Well this is life in color (color) / Today feels like no other (other)" - you can guess the vibe.
    10/22/2013 5:07:10 PM
  • As of today nearly two-thirds (64 per cent) of Apple devices are running iOS 7 says Cook.
    10/22/2013 5:08:18 PM
  • Now covering iTunes radio. Over 20 million users so far, with over 1 billion songs played (just in the US in the last month).
    10/22/2013 5:09:07 PM
  • Craig Federighi now on stage - talking about OS X Mavericks. Running over what we first saw in WWDC - specifically on how the new code gets the most of the hardware. Power efficiency is greater - eg, install Mavericks on a MacBook Air and get an hour longer web browsing, and an hour and half greater watching video. Impressive what software can do to boost hardware. Microsoft could certainly take note here.
    10/22/2013 5:13:33 PM
  • Federighi says Mavericks lets you fit "6gbs of data into just 4gbs of RAM"
    10/22/2013 5:14:05 PM
  • Focus now on apps - the Maps app and iBooks - bringing textbooks and all other books to the Mac. Many have been wondering why this wasn't put on Macs earlier, but at least it's here now.
    10/22/2013 5:16:41 PM
  • A walkthrough of Mavericks being used for work now - the tags (assign documents under various topics) look especially useful; lots of drag and dropping of nice quotes and pictures from documents to documents.
    10/22/2013 5:19:33 PM
  • Showing off 'Reader' view now - Apple's own alternative to the usual apps that take online articles and reformat them, stripping out the noise and just grabbing the text and pictures. The updates to Safari are really pushing more ways to read and shares links online.
    10/22/2013 5:21:23 PM
  • Showing off the Maps app - find a route on your desktop, click a button and the route map instantly gets sent off to your iPhone.
    10/22/2013 5:22:21 PM
  • 10/22/2013 5:23:12 PM
  • Pricing now. Annnnd, wait for it - Mavericks is free and can be downloaded straight from the app store. "Free is good" says Craig. Yup.
    10/22/2013 5:23:55 PM
  • The upgrade is free for older OS versions too - and on machines going back to the iMac in 2007. Mavericks is available today.
    10/22/2013 5:24:48 PM
  • Phil Schiller takes the stage. Walking us through some glowing reviews of the MacBook Air. But now we're turning our attention to the MacBook Pro.

    New 13'' MacBook Pro - lighter (0.71 inches) and thinner and Apple are introducing (as we expected) the Haswell chip from Intel. Up to 9 hours of battery life on the Pro now. Flash storage is now PCIe based flash, and the WiFi has been updated to the .ac standard..
    10/22/2013 5:28:21 PM
  • New 13-inch MacBook pro starts at $1299 ($200 cheaper than the old starting price).
    10/22/2013 5:28:42 PM
  • Onto the 15'' MacBook Pro - again we've got updated chips, including the Intel Crystal Well processor. Pricing again now - starting now from $1999 - with a configuration of a 2.0Ghz quad core i7 chip, 8GB RAM.
    10/22/2013 5:30:32 PM
  • Onto the Mac Pro. We've already had a look at this at the developers' conference - this is the black cylinder design with the triangular thermal core in the center and a single fan drawing air up from the top. One-eighth the volume of the previous generation.

    "The fastest processor we've ever put in a Mac" - the Intel Xeon E5; "Inside it is the fastest memory we've ever put in a Mac"; comes standard with dual-workstation GPUs. Basically, all we knew from WWDC -it's the fastest Mac Pro yet, but nothing about expansion yet - the lack of this was a big gripe for the Pro community.
    10/22/2013 5:33:50 PM
  • Now running us through some of the uses for the Mac Pro - "The Mac Pro makes real-time 4K video editing a reality" says the director of Independence Day.
    10/22/2013 5:36:13 PM
  • Pricing on the Mac Pro - starting from $2999 - with 12GB RAM, 3.7 quad core, 2GB VRAM, and 256GB SSD.
    10/22/2013 5:37:30 PM
  • Video now playing of the assembly line for the Mac Pro. Lots of one armed robots doing their thing, shaving away at aluminum cylinders, plugging in components, and look! Humans are helping too. Still, very hypnotic to watch.
    10/22/2013 5:41:01 PM
  • Eddy Cue on stage now. App time. Starting with iLife: the software suite including iPhotos, iMovie and GarageBand with brand new 64-bit versions for the Mac integrated with iCloud.
    10/22/2013 5:42:18 PM
  • iMovie and iPhoto getting new features to create photobooks (which you can send to Apple to print off for you) and movies, which are arranged in a library that looks just like iTunes.

    GarageBand getting the amount of tracks doubled to 16 (and up to 32 on 64 bit machines). Bit of a demo for GarageBand now - though it'll never match this classic demo from Creative.
    10/22/2013 5:46:21 PM
  • Interesting way to play around with how the drummer sounds on GarageBand - you get little fake bios for 'your' drummer. We're listening to Kyle who has heavy rock influences. Reminds me of Theme Park when you have to choose a janitor based on their relative levels of alcoholism. Choose a different guy ('let's try out Gavin') and they bring in a different style.

    I'm sure actual sound engineers are cringeing.
    10/22/2013 5:47:37 PM
  • And as we thought - these updates are coming out free to any Mac or iOS device. Apple really driving down prices across the board here (though in fairness, they've always had more to come down from).
    10/22/2013 5:49:20 PM
  • 10/22/2013 5:55:26 PM
  • Just going over iWorks now - they've added collaborative functions, and the updates are free - all for download from today. "The biggest updates ever and all free" - "Today is the biggest day ever for apps" says Eddy.
    10/22/2013 5:57:11 PM
  • Tim Cook's back on stage. It's iPad time.
    10/22/2013 5:58:43 PM
  • Woah. They've done a switcheroo on us - quoting the bad press first! "Anyone who thinks it's a game changer is a tool" - said some anonymous non Apple-believing scrub, apparently.
    10/22/2013 5:59:26 PM
  • 170 million iPads sold from early this month. Despite the hyperbole on stage Apple really did change the market - introduce tablets and killed netbooks.
    10/22/2013 6:00:06 PM
  • "Tablet usage share" - 81 percent for iPad usage, 19 per cent for non-iPads. Apple stressing the time spent on their devices - not the overall market share. It's true though - we're gonna see a lot of tablets sold this Christmas, but mostly because they're cheap.
    10/22/2013 6:01:14 PM
  • Another video presentation - this time going through all the uses for the iPad. Farmers are using iPads, wind farmers are using iPads; chefs, vintners, dancers, surgeons - everyone is getting in on the action is the message.

    Apple stressing that these aren't just media-consumption devices - as with the usage stats.
    10/22/2013 6:04:07 PM
  • "We want to help our customers create even more amazing stories." - "This is just the beginning for iPad". Yes, yes - but what's new!?
    10/22/2013 6:05:28 PM
  • Okay. Next step. Here we go. Space music and the new iPad is "thinner, lighter, more powerful than ever before."
    10/22/2013 6:06:48 PM
  • It's getting a new name - the iPad Air.
    10/22/2013 6:06:55 PM
  • The iPad Air stats (this is the 9.7 inch device). It's 20 per cent thinner across the entire device and weighs 1lb (under 500g) - "the lightest full sized tablet in the world."

    They've put the A7 chip in it as well as the M7 motion co-processor (that's the one that looks after all the senors). Eight times faster than the original iPad, with 72 times better graphic performance than the original iPad. Half of that increase is coming from the previous generation.

    Available in Space Grey - 10 hour battery life.
    10/22/2013 6:08:00 PM
  • New range line-up: iPad 2 - for $399 - and the iPad Air for $499 with Retina display and Wi-Fi. And it's available in China for the first time.
    10/22/2013 6:11:55 PM
  • Pricing for the MacBooks

    10/22/2013 6:13:29 PM
  • Jony Ive now talking about the new iPads - stressing "integrity, durability".
    10/22/2013 6:13:53 PM
  • And in case you'd forgotten how plain terrifying the Mac Pro looks. Actual size there.

    10/22/2013 6:15:10 PM
  • Onto iPad mini.
    10/22/2013 6:15:53 PM
  • Retina display added to the iPad Mini. 7.9-inch with a 2048 x 1536 resolution. Usual Retina promise - "pixels so small you can't see them".
    10/22/2013 6:16:58 PM
  • And the iPad Mini also gets the A7 chip as well! Four times faster on CPU tasks, eight times faster on graphics tasks. 10 hours battery life - with expanded LTE (4G) support and new FaceTime HD Camera. Available in Space Grey as well. Starting at $399 for 16Gb with WiFi. Available from November.

    iPad mini original now starting at $299.
    10/22/2013 6:18:01 PM
  • Just going over the announcements so far today - see above for what we know so far about new pricings and release dates. Something more to come, surely? Surely.
    10/22/2013 6:21:20 PM
  • We're looking at a pencil. Why are we looking at a pencil? "It can be used to start a poem or finish a symphony".... Ohhh, its a metaphor! They're using metaphors!
    10/22/2013 6:22:10 PM
  • (It's an iPad - the iPad Air was hidden behind the pencil)
    10/22/2013 6:22:30 PM
  • That's it - no 'one more thing' unfortunately. On to the hands-on, we'll keep you updated as we get a closer looks on things.
    10/22/2013 6:24:20 PM
  • 10/22/2013 6:25:36 PM
  • The new iPad Air

    10/22/2013 6:33:09 PM
  • Our poll currently showing that it's pretty close between the happy and disappointed reactions to the show. Most of the rumours seemed to come through as expected though a noticeable absence was the fingerprint scanners introduced in the iPhone 5s. We've heard talk of shortages in the supply chain though, so that might be part of the reason.
    10/22/2013 6:34:57 PM
  • The new iPad air has 72 times better graphical performance than the original iPad

    10/22/2013 6:41:10 PM
  • Comparison of the previous generation iPad and the iPad Air thickness.

    10/22/2013 6:41:12 PM
  • So, the biggest news today seems to be that OS X Mavericks is free. During the presentation they briefly flashed up an advert for the recently-updated Windows 8.1 - along with a price-tag for Pro: $199. Turning this on its head is certainly an aggressive strategy from Apple, and one that might even end up changing standard industry practice.
    10/22/2013 6:45:19 PM
  • And we've just come out from the hands-on event. Lots of press crowding around tables of tablets (and the odd Mac Pro lurking in the corners). Here's David Phelan's take on the new iPad Air:

    Though much is the same, the new design on the big-screener is a stylish improvement. The weight difference and smaller frame make a big difference. At first look and feel, the iPad air is the classiest, most appealing tablet available.

    And on the new iPad Mini with retina display:

    The new display is a real game-changer and makes all the apps look tremendous. It’s a speedy machine and unquestionably more convenient to carry than any other tablet – full-size or seven-inch. 

    10/22/2013 6:58:20 PM
  • That's the end of the live-blog - look out for new articles covering Apple's latest tablets, and seeing how they stack up with the competition. Thanks for joining us!
    10/22/2013 7:15:16 PM
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