Apple releases Surface Pro and last year’s iPhone

Old Apple logo - Wikimedia CommonsIn a sign that Apple has run out of ideas, the fruity cargo cult it released a swath of gadgets yesterday, which have already been released by its rivals.

The biggest “invocation” was a 12.9-inch iPad, which is hardly a revolutionary idea. What made the gadget new was that it borrowed Microsoft’s much-mocked stylus. Apple fanboys everywhere laughed at Vole for using a stylus even when there were indications that no one used it. Of course, now they have to eat their words as Apple has adopted it.

Apple’s Pencil is powered and it means you will have to charge it every 12 hours which defeats about 80 percent of the reason you would use a pencil.

Apple has come up with a Smart Keyboard, meanwhile, which attaches to the iPad Pro using a new port on the side of the tablet. Apple is calling it the Smart Connector – it looks like three small, circular buttons and supplies both power and data to the keyboard when you need to do some serious typing. We say “serious” but anyone who types for a living will hate it. However the entire set up  is identical to Microsoft’s Surface again – only much more expensive.

Both accessories are launching in November, and you will have to buy them separately from the iPad Pro. The Smart Keyboard costs $169, while the Pencil comes in at $99. That is an extra $268 on top of the iPad Pro’s $799 starting price, tipping the set over the $1,000 mark. This is a lot of dosh for a keyboard-less netbook, which is already in the shops much cheaper.

Another disappointment was Apple’s announcement of its iPhone 6S and 6S plus. The Tame Apple Press had claimed that this would save Apple from the perils of the dying smartphone market.

This time the iPhones are made from a 7000 custom aluminium alloy that is used in airspace which might not bend as much as its predecessor. The phone comes with a 3D Touch sensor that will detect if you tap or press, and the level of pressure. It will let you read a glimpse of an email if you press harder, it will show more so long as you keep pressing.

This “so what” feature is the only thing new on the phone, which otherwise is identical to last years’ devices. Phones will have the same 4.7-inch screen for the iPhone 6S and 5.5 inch for the Plus.
Apple’s SVP of hardware Phill Shiller has mentioned that they come with glass with a dual ion technology called voodoo magic. We guess it means that it has been soaked with the blood of a Chinese sweatshop labourer, because we cannot otherwise see what is magical or voodoo about the tech. We advise that you leave it at a crossroads and walk away without turning back.

Apple’s A9 chip is using the brand new transistors, and the Phil Shiller claims that the new chip has incredible graphics, the motion coprocessor M9 is built inside of the chip but then again he is likely to say that even if they were complete pants.

The camera has a few more megapixels, but this is thanks to an iSight camera sensor, coming from Sony rather than anything clever from Apple.

The phone does have 4k video, but given that there is no 4k content available and the fact that it will eat up shedloads of bandwidth, few may want it.

Pre-orders start on September 12 and shipping on September 26 to the top ten countries. iOS 9 will be available on September 16. The pricing remains the same as the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6S and the storage remains at 16GB, 64GB and 128GB

What should be worrying Apple investors here is that it is clear that innovation has shifted away from Apple to other companies. Those who bought Apple because it was flashy and packed full of gadgets will have to look elsewhere. Copying everyone else is the status quo in the smartphone industry, Apple has made a name for itself by doing things first.

Jobs’ Mob also seems even less in touch with the market in terms of price. The market does not need a more expensive Surface Pro. It also does not need a new smartphone which is more or less identical to last year’s model.