Apple unveiled a new generation of iPads, complete with Touch ID fingerprint sensors and high definition displays, at a launch event in Cupertino on Thursday evening.
Apple CEO Tim Cook released the new, thinner iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 3, both of which come with Touch ID fingerprint sensors for added security, it will also be used as part of Apple’s pay’s verification check. Both systems also boast higher resolution displays and 2.8 times faster WiFi.
Two iPad Air 2’s stacked on top of each other it was claimed are thinner than the original iPad and it is 18 per cent thinner than its predecessor at 6.1 mm. It will now have dual microphones and a better selfie-cam for FaceTime. The iPad Mini 3 will echoe these features although it will be much smaller than the previous model.
The release of the new iPads, it is hoped, will revitalise sales of Apple’s tablets which have slumped of late and will be vital to the firm as they willmake up about a quarter of Apple’s income, shifting 225 million iPads in the last four years, over-taking the PC industry.
It was also acknowledged that Apple Pay will launch on Monday contrary to a leak published by 9to5Mac claiming that it would be rolled out this weekend. It will offer iOS users the ability to ‘tap-to’pay’ which the Californian firm would one day like to see replace wallets. A 16GB Air 2 will set consumers back $499, with the 64GB and 128GB each costing an additional $100 dollars consecutively.
It emerged that the system will be a one touch service where no payment details will be shared with the outlet – supposedly offering greater security. The service will be widely accepted worldwide with over 500 banks also set to sign up.
Cook claimed: “It’s going to change the way we pay for things. It’s easy, it’s secure, and yes, it’s a private way to pay for things.”
The Apple CEO also praised the launch of the two handsets, describing them as the “biggest iPhone launch ever” hitting 32 countries in its first month on the market. An impressive figure considering the phone has yet to be released in China, the world’s biggest smartphone market, with over 20 million pre-orders.
It also emerged that almost half of Apple users have made the upgrade to iOS 8following a bumpy first few weeks for the operating system.
Most notably, during the event, comedian Stephen Colbert made a surprise appearance as the ‘chief of secrecy’ where he called CEO Cook ‘Chairman Honeycrisp’.