Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 23 September 2020

FUTURE

Six takeaways from Apple's annual launch event

The iPhone manufacturer launches Fitness+ that users can subscribe to for less than $80 a year

At its much awaited annual event in Cupertino, California, on Tuesday, Apple rolled out new smartwatches, iPads and subscription services.

Here are the six takeaways from the tech giant's newest offerings.

Attracting fitness enthusiasts

Amid heightened health concerns due to the coronavirus pandemic, Apple rolled out a new subscription service called Fitness+. The service costs less than $80 (Dh294) a year and allows up to five family members to use it at no additional cost.

The subscription comes with a filtering tool that allows users to customise their exercise regimen according to the type of workout, trainer, duration or music selection. It will be available before the end of this year, the company said. It builds on the growing number of health metrics already available on the Apple Watch, such as blood oxygen levels, heart rate, speed, calories burned and distance covered.

Apple Fitness+ comes with a customisation tool that allows users to personalise their workouts. EPA  
Apple Fitness+ comes with a customisation tool that allows users to personalise their workouts. EPA

One-stop shop for all needs

Offering a fully bundled solution for its services, Apple announced Apple One to bring all of its subscription services in one simple plan. These include different subscriptions such as Apple Music, Apple TV+, Apple Arcade, Apple News+, Apple Fitness+ and iCloud. Starting this month, it offers customers a 30-day free trial.

Lori Malm unveils Apple One. AFP
Lori Malm unveils Apple One. AFP

Apple Watch to run latest watchOS 7

WatchOS 7, which Apple pushed out at its Worldwide Developer Conference in June, comes with many new features that include sleep tracking, automatic handwashing detection, a selection of new workout types and the ability to curate and share watch faces.

For the first time, Apple Watch can be set up through a parent’s iPhone. Parents can reach their child anytime and identify their location, with all data being encrypted. WatchOS 7 offers optimised features for adults including fall detection and irregular heart rhythm notification.

The Apple Watch Nike. EPA
The Apple Watch Nike. EPA

iPads become more handy with the latest OS

Available from Wednesday, the new operating system iPadOS 14 supports all iPad models. It integrates Apple Pencil into the iPad experience for better note-taking capabilities. It brings Scribble features to iPads that use on-device machine learning to convert handwriting into typed text in real time. It also offers better photo organisation and navigation tools.

Getting eco-friendly

As part of its commitment to sustainability, Apple will no longer ship USB power adapters with new Apple Watch models. The company is using recycled material and a 100 per cent recycled case on aluminium models of smartwatches. Combined, Apple's efforts cut the equivalent of 159,000 metric tonnes of carbon emissions per year from the atmosphere, it said.

Tim Cook, chief executive, speaks during a virtual product launch seen on a laptop computer in Tiskilwa, Illinois. Daniel Acker/Bloomberg
Tim Cook, chief executive, speaks during a virtual product launch seen on a laptop computer in Tiskilwa, Illinois. Daniel Acker/Bloomberg

Personalised programme for healthy living

The company has collaborated with the government of Singapore on the health initiative LumiHealth. It includes weekly activity goals that can be met through walking, swimming, yoga and other activities. The LumiHealth app reminds users to go for health screenings and participate in wellness challenges that aim to improve sleep habits and encourage better food choices. Apple plans to expand the programme in other parts of the world, based on the results of the programme in Singapore.

Updated: September 16, 2020 02:46 PM

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