It’s the yearly affair by Cupertino giant Apple again, and at Apple’s most anticipated keynote event of the year, the company has finally announced the iPhone 7 series – the iPhone 7 and the iPhone 7 Plus. Many rumors have surfaced prior to Apple’s keynote, so let’s see which ones were spot on.

For starters, the iPhone 7 features a build that looks pretty similar to last year’s iPhone 6S, with a curved alumnium body. Apple has also added a new color option for the iPhone 7 – Jet Black. What makes the Jet Black color option differ from the rest is its look and feel. Instead of a smooth metal finish like seen with the Gold, Silver, Black and Rose Gold options, the brand new Jet Black comes with a glossy design instead. The Jet Black color also features a much darker black that Apple’s previous gray and black offerings. The possible downside to it is that the Jet Black model can be a fingerprint magnet.

The iPhone 7 features Apple’s new 64-bit quad core A10 Fusion chip, which as interesting as it sounds, is probably a standard annual improvement upon iPhones. In case you want to know more, the A10 is 40% faster than the A9 chip in the previous 6S. The iPhone 7 packs a new GPU as well, performing 50% faster than last year’s iPhones. The home button on the iPhone 7 is also being improved to a new force sensitive one. The new home button works similarly to Apple’s on Force Touch technology on its Macbook trackpads. The Taptic Engine feedback, originally seen on the Apple Watch has also made its way to the iPhone 7, offering different vibration feedbacks for different notifications.

The iPhone 7 also sports an improved 12MP rear camera with OIS, f/1.8 aperture, six-element lens. The camera features a Quad-LED flash which allows for better photo capturing under artificial lighting. With IOS 10, the camera app allows you to save photos in RAW format. Coupled with the updated camera is a 7MP FaceTime HD Camera on the front with auto image stablization.

For the case of the iPhone 7 Plus, Apple appears to have upped the ante with a dual camera configuration on the back of the handset, the first ever on an iPhone. The setup consists of two 12MP lenses, one being a wide angle lens and the other being a telephoto lens. With the dual camera setup, the iPhone 7 Plus is capable of 2x optical zoom and up to 10x software zoom. As Apple isn’t the first to introduce a dual-lens camera, we do know that images captured by such cameras will provide better depth of field. Phil Schiller of course stressed that the iPhone 7 Plus doesn’t mean that we can dump our DSLR’s or replace them.

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Moving on to more improvements, the iPhone 7 comes with stereo speakers, as rumored before. The speakers are positioned on the top and the bottom of the handset. As for the next controversial rumor that is spot on – the absence of the headphone jack, Apple has shot back with a one word reply, “Courage”. The courage to move on, to be precise, though Apple too isn’t the first the remove the headphone jack from a phone.

With the omission of the headphone jack, Apple has introduced the rumored Air Pods, opting to go full wireless in the future. The Air Pods are a pair of wireless earbuds, fitted with Apple’s new W1 chip. It features infrared sensors and motion accelerometers to activate Siri, plus a microphone that for voice enhancement. The Air Pods comes with a charging case that carries 25 hours worth of charge, with the Air Pods offering 5 hours of battery life. But of course, Apple isn’t leaving behind wired earphones and headphones. The iPhone 7 and 7 Plus both come shipped with a Lightning to headphone jack dongle.

One key breakthrough by Apple with the iPhone 7 line is water resistance. Yes, you read right. The iPhone finally comes with water and dust resistance. Better late than never, the new iPhone is rated IP67 for water and dust resistance. For battery life, the iPhone 7 boasts 2 more hours than the 6S, and for the Plus variant, one extra hour. 

To wrap it all up, the iPhone 7 series has done away with the 16GB memory configuration. Instead, they come in 32GB, 128GB and 256GB options. The 64GB option appears to be removed as well, and is now only available with the iPhone SE. The iPhone 6S and 6S Plus are now offered in 32GB and 128GB memory options. Last but not least, the iPhone 7 comes with a price starting at $649 (RM2,627.05) and the iPhone 7 Plus starts at $769 (RM3,112.80). The Air Pods on the other hand, come with a price tag of $159 (RM643.61). Do note that the stated prices in Ringgit are just a direct conversion and won’t be the official Malaysian pricing. What do you think of the new iPhones?