REUTERS - Apple on Tuesday revealed the iPhone 13 and a new iPad mini with 5G connection, faster CPUs, and better cameras.
While the Cupertino, California-based business did not reveal any groundbreaking new features or products, analysts expect older iPhone X users will be eager to upgrade.
The A15 Bionic chip in the iPhone 13 will enable features like text detection when the phone's camera is directed at it. With unique 5G antennas and radio components, the iPhone 13 comes in five colors.
The phone starts at $699, with eligible trade-ins saving up to $700. A trade-in deal of up to $1,000 is available for the iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max. All three versions go on sale Sept. 24.
"The competition is still catching up to our chips," said Kaiann Drance, an Apple iPhone marketing executive.
That smartwatch will have a bigger screen and faster charging. It will be available later this autumn for $399.
Apple has updated the iPad Mini with 5G connection and a new design that resembles the iPad Air and Pro versions. Apple has included a camera to the iPad Mini for working and learning from home. The iPad starts at $329 and the iPad Mini at $499. Both are coming next week.
Apple shares fell 0.5%, in line with broader market declines.
"There's nothing revolutionary disclosed, but they made enough upgrades to at least stimulate some customer anticipation," said Rick Meckler, partner at Cherry Lane Investments.
Apple released the iPhone 12 last year, including a fresh design and the first 5G devices. Analysts foresee modest hardware enhancements and an emphasis on 5G this year.
Carriers including AT&T Inc, Verizon Communications and T-Mobile USA are expected to offer new incentives around devices that can take use of the greater speeds such networks can offer, according to Ben Bajarin, Creative Strategies' head of consumer technology.
Bajarin said that the 5G network capacity seemed to be far greater than six months ago. "They want upgrades. They'll be vicious."
Apple's largest product launch of the year comes as its stock price suffers due to regulatory scrutiny of business practices including charging software developers commissions on in-app payments.
Apple shares were up around 15% year to far, lagging the Nasdaq Composite Index, which was up about 19%.
Apple's updates would keep customers, according to Kim Forrest, founder and CEO of Bokeh Capital. "I think once the consumer gets the Apple chip in their head, they're stuck," she remarked.
Apple's $30.6 billion accessories division grew 25% last fiscal year despite a modest dip in iPhone revenue. Customers who buy more than one Apple product, such as an Apple Watch and an iPhone, are more likely to continue with the brand and spend money on its apps and services.
Apple improved the watch's tracking of cycling sessions and dust protection for hiking. Apple Fitness+ is a subscription program that offers guided exercises with Apple teachers. The company introduced pilates and skiing activities, as well as a group workout tool. All watch devices come with three months of free servicing.
Peloton, a maker of exercise bikes and online instruction, was down 1.6%.
According to Bajarin, it's the only service they provide where you must own the product to use it.