Apple event rolls out boosted iPad and Mac, and revives iPhone SE
Cupertino, California - Apple's first product launch event of the year on Tuesday saw the tech giant launching a new budget iPhone SE, a new iPad Air and a new Mac Studio computer featuring what Apple described as "the most powerful chip ever built for a personal computer."
Apple says its latest iPhone SE models now feature 5G, the new A15 bionic chip, longer battery life and improved durability.
The phone looks similar to the previous iPhone SE, with a 4.7-inch rectangular display and a TouchID fingerprint sensor. It sports a 12-MP rear camera and is available in three colors (midnight, starlight, and red).
The iPhone SE will be available for pre-order from March 11, with availability beginning Friday, March 18. It's set to retail for $429, a slight price hike compared to its predecessor's price tag of $399.
"iPhone SE has been an incredibly popular choice with our existing users and for new iPhone customers, thanks to its iconic design, exceptional performance, and affordable price," said Kaiann Drance, Apple's vice president of Worldwide iPhone Product Marketing.
"This year we've built the most powerful and durable iPhone SE yet, with better battery life thanks to A15 Bionic, the same chip as our iPhone 13 lineup that also unlocks advanced camera features like Smart HDR 4, Photographic Styles, and Deep Fusion."
Upgraded iPad and Mac
Apple also unveiled a new version of its mid-range iPad, the iPad Air, which now features the M1 processor, a chip used in the iPad Pro and MacBook Air models.
The new model also features an upgraded 12-MP front-facing camera with a wide angle lens, as well as compatibility with the latest accessories.
Greg Joswiak, Apple's senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing, said: "With the breakthrough M1 chip, Ultra Wide front camera with Center Stage, and ultra-fast 5G, iPad Air is now more powerful, more capable, and simply more fun than ever."
The new iPad's price starts at $599, and will ship on March 18.
Apple also launched Mac Studio, the tech giant's first new Mac model in years.
Mac Studio is powered by Apple's in-house M1 Max and the new M1 Ultra chips, doubling down on the company's shift away from Intel silicon.
Apple also launched a 27-inch display called Studio Display with 5K resolution, which also features an Apple chip, speakers, and built-in camera.
The Mac Studio with M1 Max chip starts at $1,999, while the model with an M1 Ultra starts at $3,999. The Studio Display starts at $1,599.
According to Apple, the new Mac Studio powered by M1 Max has up to 2.5 times faster CPU performance than the fastest 27-inch iMac with a 10-core processor. It also boasts of up to 50% faster CPU performance than a Mac Pro with a 16-core Xeon processor.
The newest lineup of Apple products has some powerful tech aimed at power users, with a few new options for smaller budgets, like yet another version of the popular budget iPhone SE.
Cover photo: Collage: Apple, IMAGO / Rene Traut