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Apple event highlights new iPhone 5, iPods, iTunes, Foo Fighters

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Apple today unveiled a new, larger iPhone 5 as well as a new iPod Touch, iPod Shuffle, and a revamped iTunes aimed at mobile users. It also released the latest version of its mobile operating system, iOS 6.

VentureBeat covered the event live, so scroll down for a reverse-chronological blow-by-blow with all the details. Or check out our iPhone 5 news page and Apple company news page for detailed looks at each product.


Top stories from today’s Apple event:


Impatient? Visual type of person? Check out all of VentureBeat’s photos from the event in this gallery right here.

11:49 “One of the great things about being here is getting to meet all of these incredible people that are shaping our future. Just like when you get to meet someone like Little Richard or Tom Petty or Jimmy Page, you realize these are just people who took it upon themselves to do something different to change the world and shape our future, but meet them and they’re flesh and bone and they’re just people. This one is dedicated to all those people.” –Foo Fighters lead singer Dave Grohl.

He starts singing My Hero.

11:43 DOOOOOOOD THE FOO FIGHTERS ARE HERE.

They are playing music!

Reporter Meghan Kelly is current acting a fool dancing in her seat.

11:42 Tim Cook, back on stage: “When you look at each of these, they are incredible industry leading innovations by themselves, but what sets them apart and what places Apple way out in front of the competition is how they world so well together.”

“Apple has never been stronger.”

“[Apple employees] are doing the best work of their lives.”

“Now, whenever we have a music event, we like to remind ourselves and our customers of why we do what we do. And there’s no better way to do that than to have one of our favorite musical artists perform.”

[Just once I'd like an Apple exec to say, "These aren't the best we've done. They're pretty good. But the ones before were better." --Farhad Manjoo, @fmanjoo]

11:40 Pricing: iPod Shuffle is $49 for the same 2GB. The iPod nano is $149 for 16GB and the fourth generation iPod Touch will be $199 for a 16Gb device and $249 for the 32GB.

For the new iPod Touch, a 32GB will run you $299 and a 64GB will run you $399.

These are all available in a “Product Red” model, a percentage of the revenue from these are given to fight AIDS in Africa. Thus far, Apple has given $50M.

We’re now watching Apple’s new commercial for the iPod line. Oooh, look at them dancing iPods!

11:38 There are a few ports on the Earpod that let airflow in and out of the acoustic chamber, to help make greater, low frequency sound.

Apple is shipping these as a standalone accessory available today! Apple is including earpods with the nano, touch, and iPhone 5. Sorry, shuffle.

[EarPods: You can hear the 40%+ gross margins perfectly! -- Charlie Kindel @ckindel]

Apple's new Earpod comes with the iPhone 5 and new iPods

11:35 Let’s take a look at speakers, obviously important for music listening.

Apple is one of the biggest providers of speakers in the world, he says.

New headphones, y’all!

Apple spent three years designing “Earpods.” They look like little eggs you put in your ears.

We’re watching a video of people putting the Earpods in their ears.

Jonathan Ive equates making an earbud to fit every ear like making a shoe to fit every foot. But they looked at a ton of ears and then made something they hope will work.

[From the Twitterverse: I warn you again: every single #iphone5 is a Steve Jobs horcrux. -- BillCorbett ‏@BillCorbett]


Breakout story: Siri gets Facebook integration, movie recommendations in iOS 6


11:33 “For the first time we’ve supporting Siri for the iPod Touch.”

It also comes in colors! Pretty. Okay, we’ve got silver, black, blue, yellow, and red. And each one comes with a color-coordinated wristband.

The iPod shuffle is getting updated with the iPod nano colors as well.

“This is our iPod line for the holidays.”

11:31 More on the iPod Touch: It also has the panorama feature. iPhoto is now available for the iPod Touch too, you can download it from the app store.

There’s a pop out at the bottom of the iPod Touch so you can attach a wrist band.

Apple improved the FaceTime HD camera as well. Not as dramatic.

Bluetooth 4.0 with LE is supported, 802.11 a/b/g/n as well.

Airplay mirroring is also available, so you can take your games from your iPod Touch to your TV using Apple TV.


Breakout story: iPhone 5 will include tiny, super-fast Lightning connector


11:29 There are up to 40 hours of music playback on the iPod Touch as well.

The Apple A6 chip hasn’t made it into the iPod Touch, however. They’re still running the A5. The iPod Touch is, however, getting a new 5 megapixel iSight camera, with the same sapphire crystal lens cover as the iPhone 6.


Breakout story: Incredible deal alert: iPhone 4 now free on contract


11:27 Torsten Rile of Natural Motion comes on stage to show us “Clumsy Ninja” running on the iPod touch.

Okay, he’s super cute. [Ed.: Who: Torsten? Or the ninja?]

Apple's new iPod Touch, announced September 12, 2012


Breakout story: iOS 6 coming September 19


11:22 “Next, let’s talk about the iPod touch.”

“We wanted to take everything customers love about the iPod touch and make it even better with an all new fifth generation iPod touch….The best iPod touch we’ve ever made.”

It’s metal, not black, which makes it look less like the iPhone. And it’s 6 mm thin. and 88 grams. “It’s the lightest iPod touch we’ve ever created.”

Graphics are up to 7 times better in this iPod touch as well.

Apple's new iPod nano announced on September 12, 2012

11:20 Craig Joshua is giving us an update on iPod

Over 350M iPods sold to day. “We don’t do this just for the numbers. iPod and music are part of the DNA of the company.”

The iPod nano

“We really wanted to take the opportunity to reinvent the nano.”

“For one, we’d want to give it a really large display. We’d want to have really easy to use controls. We’d want to make it thin and light…and of course, we’d want to give it the latest technologies like the Lightning connector. We’ll that’s just what we did.”

This is the 7th generation of the iPod Nano. It’s 5.4 mm thin, almost 40 percent thinner than the iPod nano it replaces.

“It’s the biggest display we’ve ever put in an iPod nano at 2.5 inches..and it’s a multi-touch display.”

It comes in seven different colors as well. And they color matched the wallpaper to the color of the casing.

There’s an FM tuner that has live pause so you can go back and listen to something that was playing on the radio.

“And we’re bring video back to the iPod nano.”

There’s also a fitness and pedometer built into the nano, making it competitive with devices like the Fitbit and Striiv.

There’s Bluetooth integration as well.


Breakout story: Siri gets Facebook integration, movie recommendations in iOS 6


11:15 There’s a new iTunes mini-player as well, which has a search function of its own.

If you preview a song in the store, the preview will continue playing while you browse other areas of the store. It’s small, but it that’s what’s Apple is all about, small features that make something awesome.

The new iTunes will be available in late October.

11:13 Here’s a picture of the iPhone 5’s internals that Dean took a little while ago.

The interior of the iPhone 5

11:10 You can see photos that artists want to share with you through a new “gallery” feature on albums.

You can see your entire music library and the contents of a playlist you’re creating side-by-side as well. Before, you couldn’t see what was already inside a playlist.

The revamped iTunes store

11:07 Here comes Eddy Cue to take us through the iTunes changes.

Over 26M songs are listed on iTunes and customers have purchased and downloaded 2B songs since it was launched. It is now available in 63 countries around the world. There are also over 435 million iTunes accounts.

Two thirds of iTunes downloads come from iOS devices. So they’ve completely redesigned iTunes for iOS. This goes for movies, TV shows, along with songs.

iTunes on your Mac and PC:

Apple built iCloud right into the iTunes on Mac and PC. Jeff Robin is coming on stage now to talk about it.

“We’ve got a beautiful new edge to edge design.”

“When you click on an album, it expands in place, so you can still see all of your other albums on the screen.”

He chose Runaway Baby by Bruno Mars to play for us.

11:05  Current customers can upgrade to iOS 6 for free on September 19.

Tim Cook back on stage.

“In addition to announcing iPhone 5, we have something near and dear to our hearts to talk to you about today and that is music.” – Tim Cook

“Today we are announcing exciting changes with both iPod and iTunes.”

Apple CEO Tim Cook, with two giant iPhone 5 images behind him

11:00 So, how much will it cost? $199 for a 16GB model, $299 for 32GB and $399 for 64GB.

You can now get an iPhone 4 with 8 GB for free with contract. iPhone 4S for $99, with 16 GB of storage.

You can start to pre-order this Friday, and the iPhone 5 will ship on September 21 in the US, Canada,UK, France, Germany, Australia, Japan, and Hong Kong.

They want to be in 100 countries on 240 carriers.

“This will be our fastest roll out ever.” – Phil Schiller.

Apple exec Phil Schiller before images of the iPhone 5

10:56 Let’s talk about the design.

They call the aluminum color “slate.” There’s also a white iPhone. Doesn’t look like there are any new colors, folks! (Cue “sad trombone” sound.)

We’re watching a video on the iPhone 5.

It has a matte back with diamond-cut sides that give the product a mirror finish.

“It took all of our learning, our thinking, to realize something so simple, so clear.”–Apple lead designer Jony Ive


Breakout story: The iPhone 5′s badass camera: 40% faster photo capture, panorama mode, & more


10:53 “Siri now knows all about sports!”

He asked her how the 49ers did, and she showed him a table of how the Niners did against the Green Bay Packers. (The answer? Very well.)

Siri will also launch apps for you now.

Siri will also recommend movies to you “based on what others are saying” about those movies. It looks like they’re using Rotten Tomatoes for that information.

If you ask Siri for a restaurant reservation for sushi, she will look for tables at Sushi restaurants around.

You can also dictate Facebook statuses using Siri, because Facebook is integrated into iOS 6!

Apple integrated Facebook into more apps than just Siri, too, but didn’t mention which ones.

FaceTime officially available over cellular data, and not just Wi-Fi.

There are over 200 new features in iOS 6.

10:49 Now we’re talking about the iOS browser Safari.

Safari now has a “full screen mode”.

“iCloud Tabs” shows windows you may have opened on your Mac, so you can open them on your iPhone.

Got special friends in your e-mail? You can mark them as a “VIP” in the mail app. It reminds me of the “important” tab in Gmail.

Let’s look at Passbook@

He shows us a ticket for a concert, a coupon, a gift certificate, and when you’re done? Passbook will “shred” it for you.”

Let’s go back to shared photo stream. He chooses a few photos from his camera role and chooses share photo stream. He titles the stream and it automatically sends it out to your friends’ iPhones. They get a push notification to say, “Hey, someone put some photos on your phone!”

10:43 iOS 6 is alive!

It has been designed from the very beginning to take advantage of this 4-inch display.

Scott Forstall, Apple’s SVP of iOS comes on stage.

Here’s area  few of our new features:

Maps App – “We have built maps from the ground up…to zoom in and out, to rotate around. We’ve also built a search engine in it.”

The engine gives you an info card for the place you’re looking for. It got this data from Yelp.

It also has turn by turn navigation, which Siri’s voice reads off.

At any time you can tap to get an overview and you can follow a small arrow that is constantly moving as you move.

It also works in landscape.

It has a satellite layer, which has a feature called “Fly over” where you can use your finger to see a 360 view of whatever you want in the world, such as Big Ben. You can zoom in, but you’re probably not going to be able to zoom and take a good look in your friend’s apartment window.

Okay, that actually is pretty awesome looking.

The awesome looking flyover view in Apple's new iPhone maps app on iOS 6

10:40 There are three microphones built into the iPhone 5 too. One in the front, one in the back, one on the bottom. There’s a noise canceling earpiece so you can hear your friends without making them yell in your ear.

They have a  new technology to help you sound more natural as well.

(The iPhone 5 definitely has a new back casing as well. There’s what looks like a matte material covering a good majority of the back of the phone.)

Now we’re talking about the port!

It was a 30 pin connector. “So much of what we used to do over the wire is done wirelessly now.”

“It’s time for the connector to evolve. Our new connector is called ‘Lightning.’”

It has an 8 signal design, and is 80 percent smaller! Phil also mentions that it’s more durable.

Bose, JBL, B&O are all compatible with the new connector.

They’ve created a 30 pin-to-Lightning adapter as well.

Glad Apple have solved one of the great 1st-world problems: a docking cable that GOES IN BOTH WAYS. OMFG. Billions of nano-seconds saved! — Julian Rignall ‏@JazRignall

10:36 “The ocean just looks blue on the iPhone 5, kids look happier, and the world is just a more beautiful place.”

“Look at that bee, you can see the veins on the wings of a bee. This camera is tremendous.”

We have a new feature called shared photo streams. You can take photos and automatically share them with friends and family, and they can comment on them.

The biggest change? You can now take panorama photos. You can just sweep your camera across the sceen at the pace the camera tells you to, and it will do the rest.

[iPhone 5’s panorama mode will be so worth it at Wal-Mart. --Mark, @tole_cover]

He shows an image of the Golden Gate Bridge. “This image is 28 megapixels in size.”

It is able to to align your image if you’re not perfectly stable, and removes people or other things that may have gotten in your way while you were sweeping across the screen.

It still takes 1080p HD video. They’ve improved stabilization and face detection for up tot 10 people in the video and you can take stills from the videos.

[Don't pay any attention to the polls over the next week -- they'll be skewed by Obama's iPhone bounce. --Nate Silver, @fivethirtyeight]

10:32 Phil Schiller back on stage!

“It is truly state of the art in the physical and realness it brings.”

They’ve not only matched, but exceeded the battery power of the iPhone 4S.

The camera now has an eight megapixel sensor, 3264×2448, with backside illumination, a hybrid IR filner, five-element lens, and f/2.4 aperture.

“You really see the different in your low light picture.”

Sapphire crystal lens cover to protect the lens. Built into the A6 chip they’ve built a “next generation ISP.” This reduces noise, has a smart filter, better low-light performance, and faster photo capture speeds.


Breakout story: Apple: 84M iPads sold as of June, 400M iOS devices sold to date


EA Real Racing demo on the iPhone 5

10:28 Murray shows us the reflections on the cars, and the fact that there’s enough power to show you your rear view windows on the iPhone 5.

“We used game center to produced one of the coolest new features…time shifted multi-player. I can challenge [a player] one day and he can play me the next.”

“This is something we’ve never seen done before. This is Real Racing 3 for the powerful new iPhone.”

It’s coming to the app store later this year.

So…a smartphone with a big screen that almost takes up the entire front of the phone? I think I smell a lawsuit. –Darren Gladstone, @gizmogladstone

10:26  Other wireless standards: 802.11a/b/g/n, 802.11n 2.4 GHz and 5GHz, up to 150 Mbps available for Wi-Fi in the iPhone 5

We’ve got the A6 chip in this iPhone, and it’s 2 times faster at CPU, 2 times faster for graphics. The chip is 22 percent small as well.

Rob Murray the executive Producer of EA studios heads out to show what they’re doing with the A6 chip.

He’s showing us Real Racing 3 — a video game using the A6 chip.

“The graphics have been built to full console quality.”


Breakout story: The iPhone 5: Apple’s obsessive refinement strikes again with a 4-inch screen, thinner design


Apple executive Phil Schiller at the iPhone 5 announcement

10:22 For all those apps that have not been updated, it runs at the same size as the previous iPhones. Apple will center it and place black borders on the sides to hide that it is not as big as the new screen.

Phil shows us the CNN and OpenTable applications to show how developers can update for the iPhone 5.

“Of course movies take advantage of that beautiful widescreen display.”

The iPhone 5 has 44 percent more color saturation than the iPhone 4S display.

They’ve integrated the touch sensors into the display itself, which makes the display 30 percent thinner.

“This truly is the world’s most advanced display.”

Now we’re talking wireless.

Apple added HSPA+, DC-HSDPA and yes, LTE is now available in your iPhone.

There is a single chip and a single radio chip coupled with a dynamic antenna inside the iPhone 5 that make it run on LTE.

Who are they working with to roll out LTE? In the US they are working with AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint. In Europe they are working with both Deutsche Telkom and a new comer “EE.”

Apple exec Phil Schiller

10:17 Phil Schiller coming up on stage now!

Hey Phil!

He mentions all the Apple logos from the computers in the crowd.

“Today, we’re going to introduce iPhone 5!”

The iPhone 5 just came out of the floor on a pedestal. It is slowly turning around like a jewel in a jewelry store.

The first view of Apple's iPhone 5

“It is an absolute jewel.” – Phil

“iPhone 5 is made entriely of glass and aluminum.”

Phile says that say that theehardware and software engineering that has gone into this product is the most challenging this team has ever taken on.

7.6mm thick — world thinnest smartphone. It weights 112 grams. 20 percent lighter than the iPhone 4S

“Can you make a phone that has everything the iPhone 4S has… that is thinner, lighter, smaller.”

The iPhone has a Retina Display and 4 inch screen that is 1136x 640.

“A phone should feel great in your hand…it should fit beautifully in your hand.”

“This display is simply amazing. “

Apple added a fifth row of apps on your screen to fill up the extra space.

Now you can see a full five-day work week in the horizontal view of the calendar.

iWork has been up dated, like Keynote, Pages, Numbers, all take advantage of the display. iPhoto, iMovie, and Garage Band are all updated for the new display as well.

10:15 “Last quarter we sold our 400 millionth iOS device. This is amazing! No one could have predicted this.”

“Today we’re taking it to the next level, making a huge leap. We have some very exciting news.”

From Russ Pitts of Polygon: Chuck Norris says if you don’t buy iPhone 5, there will be 1,000 years of no cell service. #fakeapple

10:10 84M iPads sold through June.

“Our competitors have taken notice of this,” Cook says.

iPad had a 62% marketshare last year, this year it has a 68% share.

“iPad accounts for 91% of the web traffic of all tablets! I don’t know what these other tablets are doing!”

“They must be in warehouses or on store shelves or maybe in someone’s bottom drawer!”

94% of the Fortune 500 are testing or deploying iPads.

“And they’re investing in custom apps.”

He mentions Mayo Clinic and Ducati are creating business apps.

“The app store is the place for all of us.”

700,000+ apps in the store now. 250,000 are specifically iPad apps

“Believe it or not, every app seems to have its fan, or fans.”

90% of all apps are downloaded each month. Average customer using over 100 apps.

[The iPhone 5 is infectious and spreading fast! #plagueinc #keynote #iphone5 -- Plague, Inc., a plague-management sim. ‏@NdemicCreations.]

10:08 “Our notebooks now rank number one in the US in marketshare for the last three months,” Cook says.

“Over the last year the Mac has significantly outgrown the PC, and it’s not just the last year. For the last 6 years straight, the Mac has grown significantly faster than the PC.”

“The iPad is driving the post PC revolution at a breathtaking pace.”

Sold 17M iPad last quarter, setting an all new record for iPad sales.

More iPads sold than any PC manufacturer sold of any PC line, claims Cook.

Tim Cook at Apple's iPhone 5 launch event September 12, 2012

10:06 Tim Cook is talking about Apple’s retail growth: 380 stores around the world operating  in 12 countries. Opening their first store in Sweden on Friday.

83M visitors to retails stores last quarter.

Now he’s talking about Mountain Lion.

7M copies of Mountain Lion downloaded. The best selling Mac OS yet.

10:04 They’re showing a store in Barcelona on the screen. They used limestone from the local quary to restore it. “No one would have done this but Apple,” Cook says. “It’s one of our largest stores in the world.”

Video playing: Scenes of Barcelona are playing. It is pretty. We’re looking at the Apple Store interior and fans waving.

Screaming Apple employees!

High fives! You just got a new iPhone, Barcelona customer!

10:00 The event has begun. Tim Cook is on stage.  “It’s an amazing time at Apple. An extraordinary time.”

9:45 VentureBeat’s Dean “the Machine” Takahashi is also on the scene with me.

Dean Takahashi at the Apple iPhone 5 event

9:40 Here’s another view of the crowd.

iPhone 5 event journalists queueing up

9:35 Here’s what the crowd outside the Yerba Buena center looks like. Journalists! Everywhere I look, journalists!

The crowd outside Apple's iPhone 5 event

8:35 Alright, everybody, let’s confirm some iPhone 5 rumors.

We’re here at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, Calif. waiting for the Apple event to start. If you don’t know what Apple event we’re talking about, then kudos, somehow you’ve managed to stay off the Internet for the last six months. Check out this run down of what we expect to see here.

Apple’s own website spilled some major details from the event this morning, revealing the iPhone 5 name, LTE connectivity, and that we’ll see a new iPod Touch and iPod Nano later today.

For the rest of you waiting with bated breath for a shiny new phone, apps, and operating system, check back here at 10am Pacific time. We’ll be live-blogging the event with all the iPhone 5 (and maybe iOS 6) details. Until then, happy speculating!

Apple iPhone 5 event Yerba Buena 2012

All photos by VentureBeat, unless otherwise noted

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