Check out the new phone, much like the old phone. Apple This "story is part of Apple Event , our comprehensive coverage of the latest Apple news.
Ten years ago, Tim Cook took the stage at Apple ' s Cupertino, Calif., head office, set to lead its first event as the company's newly installed CEO, he was about to announce the company's new iPhone 4S, which looked superficially identical to the iPhone 4. Apple even signaled its lesser enthusiasm by skipping the pump and the usual circumstances of a massive announcement room filled with thousands of developers, partners and reporters, choosing instead the more intimate campus town hall " location .
Still, Cook was not discouraged. "It 's an extraordinary time to bere at Apple "he said as he opened the event. " Today we remind you of the uniqueness of this business. "
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Shortly thereafter, the company said it took 1 million orders for the iPhone 4S in its first 24 hours of sales, compared to 600,000 for the iPhone 4. The iPhone 4S more than doubled the opening weekend sales of its predecessor.
Ten years later, Apple finds itself in a similar situation with the iPhone " 13 , announced Tuesday during the September "Apple event .
Now playing: Watch this: Apple announces the new iPhone 13 line, the Apple Watch series ...
The device follows the major overhaul of the iPhone 12. And unlike the iPhone 4S, whose new voice assistant Siri is become a media sweetheart "partly for her cheesy jokes - "Two iPhones enter a bar ... " - the iPhone 13 was virtually identical to the previous iteration and focused on incremental improvements in features such as camera and battery life .
In the hands of any other company, it could bebe a shrug-worthy version. But at Apple, it's part of a formula for successful iPhone launches that draw crowds of customers. Ten years ago, critics called it the "Reality Warp field," the seeming magic of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs that made people covet his company's products. After all this time, the bit of magic that sparks the interest and conversation until there is, even if the enthusiasm has waned.
"The company offers enough new features to meet consumer demand, Ben " Wood , analyst at CCS Insight, wrote in an analysis of the event. "Apple has a proven and profitable approach that it seems able to maintain for a long time.
The LG Wing offered an unusual version of the smartphone. Angela Lang / CNET
Ironically, this perception of magic is supported by a chemin incremental and arguably boring upgrade with some major technological advancements. Still, it won against rivals who tried everything, ranging straight from iPhones to flagships like the Galaxy " S21 with new wacky ideas like the LG Wing or Samsung "Galaxy Z Fold .
In comparison, the iPhone 13 is not much different from the iPhone 12, iPhone 11 or iPhone 10 in terms of size and function. It 's "faster , of course, and it "offers better cameras . The iPhone 13 Pro has 3X optical zoom, but that's only an improvement on an existing feature.
It lacks the gee-whiz tricks or futuristic appeal of the " Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 , but Moor Insights and Strategy analyst Patrick " Moorhead has said it doesn't matter to phone buyers, as few companies innovate on the proven design of a glass screen on a l body.
"Smartphones are mature, and in a country where there is" A tremendous amount of innovation in outside of Samsung, people say, eh, that 's pretty good, "he said.
Not much change
Pop quiz: Is this an iPhone 12 or an iPhone 13? Sarah Tew / CNET
At first view, it would be difficult to discern the exterior differences between ee iPhone 13 and its predecessor. There's one, a slightly (20%) thinner notch at the top that you won't really notice unless you stack an older iPhone next to it. The two camera lenses of the iPhone 13 are stacked diagonally to those of the iPhone 12, one on top of the other.
Oh, there it is. There's a new color: pink.
Rather than dwelling on the look, Apple has spent most of its time talking about the camera, including a new one mode "kinematic with adjustable focus and a number new computer photography tips to help with movies, low light photos and image stabilization.
While Apple fans and the media can hit Apple for the gradual changes , most consumers looking to upgrade from a 2 or 3 year old iPhone will likely be delighted.It will be a huge improvement in processing speed, screen quality, battery life, and camera quality.
"While none of this is groundbreaking, it does combine to create a drastically better experience for consumers who upgrade after two to four years, " said Avi "Greengart , analyst at Techsponential.
The new iPad Mini is designed to be used in landscape orientation. Screenshot / CNET figcaption >
The iPhone 13 wasn't the only product to keep the same look and feel of previous models. Apple kicked off the 80 Minute Showcase with a new ninth-generation iPad , which looked identical to the previous generation.
Apple Watch Series 7 promises a bigger screen . Apple
Apple has released a " new 8.3 inch iPad Mini - the first in two ans and a half. But its main selling point seemed to be that Apple simply shrunk last year's iPad Air, removing the home button and shrinking the bezel to fit a larger screen. . It comes with an upgraded 12-megapixel front camera for better FaceTime video chats, support for second-generation Apple Pencil, a Touch ID fingerprint unlock feature built into the power button, and a bullet "A15 Bionic more fast .
The only device that got meaning The facelift can't be the Apple " Watch Series 7 , which has a slightly heavier body (1mm) and a thinner bezel, making for a larger display. In recent years, the Apple "Watch is known to incorporate new health features like an EKG, but this model of the year relies on the new body and gradual upgrades such as faster wireless charging, shock and dirt resistance.
"It doesn't matter if Apple changes its wearable products only slightly, as the company's strong brand and customer loyalty will maintain their popularity," said Rupantar Guha, analyst at GlobalData.
A different place
Fortnite, Epic 's hit fighting game, has created a lot of legal problems for Apple. Sarah Tew / CNET
When Cook unveiled the iPhone 4S, Apple didn't Couldn't be wrong. Along with other tech giants, it was a darling of the American industry.
The iPhone 13 arrives in a much different environment. ask if " Apple exercises too much control over its App Store, to the point of crushing the competition. He just won a mixed victory "against publisher Fortnite Epic in a legal battle over app commissions, one that will probably " continue , given that Epic has signaled its willingness to appeal the decision. The company is also facing criticism internally, with the #AppleToo m action taken by employees hoping to push management to fix "what they see as a toxic corporate culture .
None of these problems have popped up during Tuesday's presentation, which focused on hardware, services, and how Apple products pcan help its customers.
And while it's not clear to what extent the backlash to which Big Techs - which have also hit Google, Facebook and Amazon - will affect sales or public perception of Apple , we are a long way from the days when customers, partners and developers blindly worshiped on the altar of iPhones.
This is a different kind of " extraordinary time "for Apple and maybe not even a cook could have expected it.