It’s deja vu all over again.
Apple on Tuesday unveiled a trio of new iPhones that look almost identical to the handsets it released in 2018 and 2017.
The company’s new flagship phone — the iPhone Pro — is virtually a clone of last year’s iPhone XS, save for an enormous and unsightly camera bump that houses a new, third rear-facing camera.
Meanwhile the iPhone 11 — Apple’s new name for its cheaper successor to the iPhone XR — comes in a slew of new colors including red, yellow and green, but is otherwise superficially identical save for a second rear-facing camera.
The 11 Pro features a new, matte textured glass finish — an upgrade from the slippery smooth models. It will come in four colors, including a new “midnight green” finish, as well as the traditional white, black and gold.
The iPhone 11 will retail starting at $699, down from the iPhone XR’s $749 starting price last year, while the 11 Pro starts at $999 and 11 Pro Max starts at $1,099.
The annual event in the Steve Jobs Theater in Cupertino, Calif., is typically Apple’s splashiest and dedicated to its flagship devices, but the company had been expected to be in a “holding pattern” until it introduces its first 5G-compatible iPhone next year, which will be able to take advantage of faster mobile data networks.
“Customers with iPhone X and beyond likely won’t have a reason to upgrade,” said Patrick Moorhead of Moor Insights & Strategy.
Apple, however, spent a large chunk of its presentation touting its new Apple Arcade platform — a Netflix-like subscription service that will allow users to play a curated collection of high-end iOS games. The service will be available in over 150 countries starting Sept. 15, and will run customers $4.99 per month.
Apple also gave more details on its Apple TV Plus streaming service, announcing its $4.99-per-month price tag and Nov. 1 launch and showing off trailers for upcoming shows, including the Jason Momoa-led “See.”
The Silicon Valley titan also announced a new 10.2-inch iPad with retina display and a beefed-up A10 Fusion chip.
The Apple Watch also received a refresh, with expanded health-tracking capabilities to include sleep-tracking features as well as better battery life. The Watch will be available in two new casing materials, ceramic and titanium.
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