Apple has now unveiled the iPhone 5 in San Francisco.
Apple CEO Tim Cook, talking on the stage in San Francisco and beamed live to London, announced: “We’ve got some really cool stuff to show you, it’s an extraordinary time at Apple.”
The latest version of the iconic smartphone comes with a four-inch screen, an eight-megapixel camera which can take 28-megapixel panoramic shots, and is the thinnest iPhone yet, at just 7.6 mm.
All of which comes, for the first time, in a package made entirely in glass and aluminium.
Apple confirmed iPhone 5, available in black and white, has a four-inch display, – 1136×640 – which is the same width as previous models but taller.
It uses a new display which is 30 per cent thinner that previous handsets.
Phil Schiller, vice president of marketing, said: “It is designed to fit in the hand, and all of our software is being updated to take advantage of this display.”
The handset also has a new chip, the Apple A6, which is twice as fast as previous versions but 22% smaller.
iPhone 5 is expected to be the biggest selling in Apple’s history, with an estimated 8 million set to be sold according to some estimates.
The battle for domination of the mobile market has become increasingly heated recently with Apple’s competitors taking it on with a series of new products.
The firm boasted the new handset has eight hours of 3G talk time, and a 225 hour standby time.
It also has an eight megapixel camera with a 3264×2448 sensor, and has improved its performance in low light, and a lens made from sapphire crystal.
The handset also now has a panorama mode to create wide shots.
“The ocean looks bluer, kids look happier,” joked Phil Schiller.
Phil Schiller also confirmed the handset has a controversial new connector.
“The iPhone from its start used the 30 pin connector, and it has served us well. A lot has changed and it is time for the connector to evolve – and out new connector is called Lightning.”
Apple also showed off a connector allowing people to use their existing chargers and accessories.
The handset will use iOS 6, and dumps Google’s maps for Apple’s own.
“We’ve built in free turn by turn directions,” said Scott Forstall of Apple as he demonstrated the new Apple Maps app.
“We use a cinematic camera angle to fly you around corners.”
Apple also showed off a 3D flyover feature allowing people to virtually fly over an area, and showed off the software “flying” over Big Ben in London.
A new app called Passbook also allows people to collect store cards, tickets and other information in a single app.
It can be used to show boarding passes on planes and for entry to concerts and sports games that support the codes.
Users can also share photo albums easily, and Apple’s speech recognition software Siri has been updated to give people sports scores, and even book restaurants.
Facebook has also been integrated into the service, allowing people to update their status via speech.
The handset will cost the same price as the iPhone 4S, $199 to $399 depending on size.
It will begin shipping on September 21st in US, Canada and several other countries, and customers can pre-order from this Friday.