Apple September 2022 event: the iPhone 14 announced; an emphasis on safety?

iPhone 14 and 14 Plus

Last updated on October 3rd, 2022

On Wednesday, Apple held its annual iPhone keynote to announce its latest iPhone model, plus a few other announcements. Most of the news seemed of the incremental upgrade variety; the announcements included:

  • The iPhone 14 line, including the regular 14, the 14 Plus, the 14 Pro, and the 14 Pro Max.
  • The Apple Watch Series 8 and a new version of the Watch SE.
  • The launch of the high-end Apple Watch Ultra.
  • The launch of the second generation AirPods Pro.
  • Apple Fitness launching to iPhone users in 21 countries.
  • iOS 16 and watchOS 9 will come out on September 12.

Below are my thoughts on the more noteworthy announcements from the Apple September 2022 event.

“Far Out?” More like “Safety First”

iPhone 14 crash detection
Apple’s iPhone 14 crash detection feature. (Apple)

While the event was named “Far Out” (as opposed to “Groovy,” I guess), it may as well have been called “Safety First.” There was a big emphasis on emergency, safety, and health features, including: auto crash detection in the Watch; an emphasis on women’s health features in the Watch; and a major new feature: satellite connectivity as an emergency feature in the iPhone 14, in the US and Canada. The new satellite feature will be free for two years with iPhone 14 purchases.

Speaking of “Safety First,” it looked like Tim Cook was standing outside during the keynote. California’s experiencing a record heat wave; the temperature in Cupertino at the start of the keynote was 80 F (27 C), with the day’s high temperature predicted to be 95 F (35 C).

The iPhone 14: “Dynamic Island?”

iPhone 14 Pro and 14 Pro Max
Apple iPhone 14 Pro and 14 Pro Max. (Apple)

The iPhone 14 has four different models:

  • The regular 14 (6.1 inches), starting at $799
  • The iPhone 14 Plus (6.7 inches), starting at $899
  • The iPhone 14 Pro (6.1 inches), starting at $999
  • The iPhone 14 Pro Max (6.7 inches), starting at $1,099

The Pro models contain the newest A16 processor. However, the 14 and 14 Plus models reuse the same chip that was in the 13 Pro. The Verge notes it’s the first time a flagship iPhone hasn’t had a processor update since the 2008 iPhone 3G. Which raises the question of whether one could just buy the now-discontinued 13 Pro at a discount, and possibly get about the same longevity support-wise as the 14/14 Plus.

The 14 Pro line also comes with “always-on” displays as a feature.

Another major change: the notch in the 14 Pro models will be pill-shaped; a new feature uses its space to display various information dynamically, from temperatures to incoming phone calls. Apple calls this new feature “Dynamic Island.” As opposed to the “Fantasy Island,” “Gilligan’s Island,” and “Love Island” jokes Twitter made about the name.

What Apple hardware’s discontinued or losing support

iPhone 11 Pro
“iPhone 11 Pro” by yto is licensed under CC BY 2.0 (Flickr / cropped from original)

As usual, the launch of new hardware means Apple’s discontinuing previous models. For the Apple Watch, the very-long-in-the-tooth Series 3 watch is finally being discontinued. This seemed long overdue; its age and the SE 2 starting at $249 made axing the Series 3 an easy decision.

For the iPhone, the models dropped include: the iPhone 11; the iPhone 13 Pro; and the iPhone 13 Pro Max. Apple usually drops the old Pro models when a new one is out. As for the 11, it was introduced in 2019, which feels like a short lifespan?

The new entry-level iPhone models are the SE (2022 model) starting at $429, and the iPhone 12 starting at $599. The 13 Mini, also starting at $599, is still around, despite some tech site reviewers feeling the Mini’s a failure or would likely get ditched.

The new version of iOS, iOS 16, will only run on the iPhone 8 at the oldest. So support-wise, it’s the end of the line for the iPhone 6S, the first-generation SE, and the iPhone 7, which were supported by iOS 15. Given the 6S dates to 2015 (seven years ago), that’s quite a long lifespan, though anyone running a phone from 2015 is overdue for an upgrade. Also dropped from iOS 16: the final iPod Touch model, making it purely an iPhone-only OS.

Finally, for iPadOS 16, a few older iPad models are dropped. Similar to iPadOS 15, the basic fifth-generation iPad (from 2017) is still supported. Also supported are the fifth-generation iPad Mini and third-generation iPad Air. I’m glad to see my sixth-generation iPad (made in 2018) has at least 1-2 years of life left to it, even if its limited storage space (32 GB) has already caused a few problems.

Photo of the Apple iPhone 14 and 14 Plus. (Apple)

Anthony Dean

Anthony Dean is the owner of Diverse Tech Geek and Diverse Media Notes.

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