iPhone 5 release media event by Apple: live coverage

Image courtesy Apple

Cupertino seems to have decided on naming the smartphone “the iPhone 5”.

“Today we’re introducing iPhone 5,” Phil Schiller announced.

“It’s the most beautiful product we’ve ever made.”

The new iPhone confirms the rumors that have circulated on the web regarding its new features.

“It is made entirely of glass and aluminum. It’s designed and built to an exacting level of standard unlike anything we, or anyone in our industry, have made before.”

The device looks very similar to the leaked images and mockups that have been so popular on the net lately.

The handset is 18% thinner and 20% lighter than the iPhone 4S.

The 1136 x 640 screen resolution and 16:9 aspect ratio are confirmed.

Schiller also explains the reason behind the larger screen size.

“It’s because of your hand. It should fit there. That’s how we designed the iPhone 5,” he said.

“You see we’re able to add a 5th row of icons. And all our software has been updated. You see more of your email in mail. Your calendar shows more events.”

“All our software has been updated. Keynote, Pages, Numbers, iPhoto, iMovie, GarageBand. You can see a full, five day workweek.”

The touch sensors were integrated into the display, making the device thinner and sharper.

“This is the most accurate display in the industry. The touch sensors are integrated right into the display itself. We removed a layer and made it sharper. This is the world’s most advanced display, and I couldn’t be prouder of it.”

New wireless tech was introduced, including LTE, HSPA+ and DC-HSDPA. A single chip is now used for voice and data, and a single radio chip.

Sprint, AT&T and Verizon will offer LTE support in the US; Rogers, Telus, Bell, Fido, Virgin in Canada.

A list of supported carriers will be available after the event.

The handset is equipped with the rumored new A6 chip which is 2 times faster than the A5 and 22% smaller.

The graphics performance is 2 times better as compared to the A5.

A demo of Real Racing 3 is presented in order to highlight the updated graphics.

In terms of battery, Schiller said the battery life will exceed that of the iPhone 4S, with 8 hours of LTE browsing, 10 hours of video, 40 hours of music, 225 hours of standby, 8 hours 3G talk time.

The camera was presented next.

“We asked our team to try and design something better than the iPhone 4S… and they’ve done that. 8mp, backside illuminated, hybrid IR filter,” Schiller explains.

“But they didn’t stop there. They enhanced it even further. Dynamic low light mode, precision lens alignment, sapphire crystal.”

“But perhaps the most amazing new feature in the iPhone 5 is called panorama,” Schiller announces.

The image is swept vertically for the best resolution. a 28 megapixel image of the Golden Gate Bridge is presented.

“It creates seamless transitions between photos.”

Better video stabilization and face detection are featured, with the possibility of taking photos while filming, as well as improved voice recognition and cancellation.

The device comes with three microphones, at the bottom, on the front and on the back.

The dock connector goes next.

“You know the iPhone from its start has used the iPod 30 pin connector. But so much has changed since we launched it in 2003.”

“We use wireless to do a lot of what we used to use cables for. So a lot has changed, and it’s time for the connector to evolve. Our new connector is called Lightning. So we have Thunderbolt and Lightning.”

The new port is all digital, it features an 8-signal design, adaptive interface, improved durability, it is reversible and 80% smaller.

As for old equipment, the company is already working on adapters.

Done with the iPhone 5.

Scott Forstall went up on stage to demo the iOS 6 on the iPhone 5.

The new maps app with turn-by-turn navigation is presented.

“We’ve built a search engine in to find POIs — we have over 100m points of interest.”

Yelp, Siri integration, flyover, satellite views, 3D modeling of the actual images are showed off.

Safari is then demoed, with a new fullscreen mode.

iCloud tabs, Passbook, coupons, movie and airplane tickets, Shared Photo Stream follow next.

Siri also comes with a few enhancements, including sports scores, standings and more.

“Can you recommend a good movie in theaters?” Siri: “That is a very subjective question. Here’s what others have found to be good movies.” Rotten Tomato reviews are displayed.

Phil Schiller revealed the price of the iPhone 5 to be the same as that of the 4S: $199 for 16GB, $299/32GB, $399/64GB (with two year contract).

Preorders are set for Friday, shipments arriving one week later.

Apple seems to have ditched the iPhone 3GS as reports recently alleged.