LIVE BLOG: Apple’s 2018 iPhone Launch, As It Happened

LIVE BLOG: Apple’s 2018 iPhone Launch, As It Happened

LIVE NOW: You better believe that we’re crazy enough to not only be awake for Apple’s 2018 event, but to live blog the whole dang thing.

If all the leaks and rumours are true, we can expect two brand new iPhones this year, along with some other fun Apple goodies.

Join us, won’t you?

8:30pm: Hello friends! It’s T-minus six hours until I’m back online again and getting prepped for Apple’s biggest event of the year.

Hopefully some sleep will occur between now and then. But Blizzard dropped the new Busan map in Overwatch today and dammit I’m only human. I’m clearly going to need multiple caffeine sources at the ready by the time 2:30am rolls around.

If you’re looking to get hyped up between now and then, I popped up a leaks and rumours post earlier today, as well as an article on what announcements we’re expecting during the show.

One of the biggest questions this year surrounds the new names — especially after last year’s sudden jump from the 7 to the X for the flagship device. iPhone 11 has been thrown out there for the X replacement, but so has the iPhone Xs and the Xs Max/Xs Plus for the rumoured XL version.

As for the 8 replacement, the iPhone 9 is an obvious choice, but this week we saw the Xc and Xr emerge as possibiltiies in a couple of alleged leaks.

I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

Of course pricing is also always at the forefront of everyone’s minds. iPhones aren’t exactly known for being cheap, but some people think that perhaps this time around Apple will try to be a little more competitive. But some leaks from this week beg to differ.

If you’re not sure how to watch live, you can head on over to Apple’s website. It’s all happening on September 13 at 03:00AM AEST.

See you in a few hours!

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9:45pm: I guess I spoke too soon! Apple accidentally leaked the product names on its own website via a product sitemap XML file. They’re going to be called the XS, Xs Max and XR! We have all the details here.

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2:40am: Alright and here we go! I got a couple of hours of sleep in and still managed to awake to more news.

A few extra things have emerged from the Sitemap XML file. And by that I mean the storage capacities and colours of all three phones.

I’ve updated the Apple leak article with these details:

“Apparently the iPhone Xs will have a 5.8-inch OLED screen and the Xs Max will have a 6.5-inch OLED screen. Both will also have 64GB, 256GB and 512GB options in silver, gold and space grey.

On the lower end of the spectrum the iPhone XR will have a 6.5-inch LCD screen — meaning that the rumour that it would be physically bigger than the Xs is accurate. It will have 64GB, 128GB and 256GB storage options and come in white, black, yellow coral, blue and red. I’m assuming that the later will be PROJECT RED, but that may be wrong.”

I guess we should all just act surprised when the announcements are made…

2:55am: The stream has begun over on the Apple site with some upbeat tunes that aren’t doing enough to wake me up yet. I’m hoping this giant coffee does the trick instead.

3:00am: And here we go — opening with a walk through of Apple Park and into the Steve Jobs Theatre. And now a flashback to several minutes to showtime with the Mission: Impossible theme playing over the footage…

A young woman is rushing to the theatre with a silver briefcase in hand (full of leaks?), and asks Siri for help…

3:03am: The briefcase has been handed off to Tim Cook. What’s in the briefcase? The damn clicker!

3:05am: Tim cook takes to the stage in the Steve Jobs theatre and talks about how hectic and magical the days leading up to Apple Day are. He also speaks about Apple’s innovation of the year, including the retail experience, which have become centres for learning as well as selling.

Apparently Apple stores are getting over 500 million visitors per year. And Apple is about to ship its 200 billionth iOS device. Yowza!

3:08am: They are about to tell us about their two most persona products. First up, the Apple Watch!

It turns out it’s the number one watch in the world. Not just smart watch, any watch.

Side note: am I the only one who thinks Tim Cook sounds a little like Mr. Mackey from South Park?

3:10am: Jeff has taken the stage to talk about the most important aspects that people like about the Apple Watch — staying connected fitness and health.

“Apple Watch has become an intelligent Guardian for your health”

And now we’re about to meet the next gen…


“Everything about it has been redesigned and engineered”

The series 4 Apple Watch comes with edge-to-edge curved display that is over 30 per cent larger. The mic is now at the opposite side of speaker (which is 50 per cent louder) to reduce interference whilst also improving phone calls and Siri requests.

The digital crown also now has haptic feedback, new watch faces, displays and new complications. They’re also more customisable so you can do things like track your flights, tap on the faces of your loved ones to contact them, etc.

The Apple Watch Series 4 will be available in silver, gold and space grey.


On the inside there is a new S4 chip with a dual 64-bit processor and 2x faster performance. There has been no change to the 18 hours of battery life from the Series 3.

Fall detection is also a massive new feature which will be able to contact your loved ones and emergency services.

The heart rate monitor has also gotten a huge boost and has the ability to detect a low heart rate, irregularities and it even has an ECG scanner. Oh and Apple have received clearance from the FDA — the first of its kind.

Jeff is also making a point of saying that the data of Apple Watch users is still totally encrypted and safe. I’m not overly concerned with hackers and the like, but I do wonder about health data on Smart Watches and when insurance agencies will come knocking for access in order to set their premiums accordingly…


On pricing, the Apple Watch Series 4 will come in at US$399 and US$499 for cellular. The Series 3 will reduce in price to $US279. The new series will be available for pre-order in the U.S. on September 14 and available from September 21. We’ll let you know when we have Australian dates and prices.

3:36am: And now w’re onto the iPhone! And we’re starting by talking about the iPhone X, which has become the number one smart phone in the world and 98 per cent customer satisfaction.


“We’re going to take the iPhone X to the next level” says Tim Cook.

Meet the iPhone Xs.


5.8-inch and 6.5-inch super retina display models have been confirmed, as have the leaked colours from earlier tonight – silver, gold and space grey.

The iPhone Xs Max has now definitely been confirmed and being hyped up to be great for photo and video editing, as well as gaming.

3:50am: The narrative around the safety of face ID has continued on from last year, citing it as the safest in the world.

Next up the new A12 Bionic, which was already leaked, has been confirmed — it’s the world’s first 7 nanometer chip, with 6.9 billion transistors to boot.

[clear] And some more spec pics because why not?



Siri Shortcuts is also being introduced, which will trigger a bunch of functions when you ask it to. In this case, Keynote day orders a coffee, sends a reminder, starts a playlist and brings up the map route to get to Apple Park.

3:56am: Oh shit, Todd Howard from Bethesda just rolled up! Are we about to see a 15th re-release of Skyrim.

Just kidding, it’s Elder Scrolls: Blades.

The whole point of this is to show off how amazing the new series of iPhones are for gaming in 2018.

Blades is available for Pre-order now and will be coming out during Spring.


The new phones also have cameras and guts that can run real time player detection and feedback (with no sensors on the players) for stuff like Basketball training. Say hello to the Home Court app.

4:05am: Atli Mar from Directive Games is here to talk improved and advanced AR gaming on the iPhone Xs and Xs Plus.


Phil is back to talk about the iPhone Xs camera. Here’s what we’re looking at:



Smart HDR is also a feature that will help capture the perfect moment and get the best details. It takes multiple pics so it can stitch them together to create the best shot. Here is an unedited shot taken on a Xs.

Bokeh quality is also being highlighted, as is the ability to adjust the depth of field in post, which is a first for phones.


I’ve never been overly impressed by iPhone cameras, especially in comparison to the likes of say a Huawei P20 Pro. So I’m very interested to see how this goes out in the field.

4:15am: Video is also getting a boost:

4:20am: And we’re onto the battery life.

The iPhone Xs has 30 minutes more battery life than the X and the Xs Max will have the biggest battery in any iPhone to date, offering an hour and a half longer battery life than the X.

And we’re wrapping the Xs with a summary of some of the features:


Wait… are we not getting the XR? Is this a psyche out?


The last few minutes have been about the efforts that Apple is taking to move towards more sustainable and more environmentally friendly products in the future. This includes Apple Giveback, where you can send an old iPhone in and get the value of it back in cash. If it can still be used, it will be given to a new user. Hopefully this will also be available in Australia.

This is reminiscent of a program that IKEA is trialling in Australia with old furniture.


Okay we’re onto the XR now and all the colours that were leaked earlier are accurate — white, black, yellow coral, blue and red.

Edge-to-edge LCD display has also been confirmed. And it’s called a liquis Retina display, which is bigger than the iPhone 8 Plus but in a smaller body.


No home button! You swipe to get where you want, and there is a new Haptic Touch rather than 3D touch.


The Xr has the same camera technology as the Xs and Xs Max. They are really talking about the quality of photographs you can take in this single-camera system. I really am keen to see this play out in a non-controlled environment.

On the battery side of things, the Xr has an hour and a half longer battery life than the iPhone 8 plus.

Now to see what the pricing will be like…

4:38am: We don’t have a whole lot of time left, so I’m wondering what else we’re going to see now the main products have been introduced, minus the pricing at the time of writing. Second gen AirPods? Perhaps some new MacBooks? Some other surprises? Come on guys, amaze us.


And we have the pricing and storage options:

The iPhone Xr will come in 64GB, 128Gb and 256Gb options and will start at US$749.

The iPhone Xs will come in 64GB, 256Gb and 512GB versions and will start at US$999.

The iPhone Xs Max will also come in 64GB, 256GB and 512Gb versions and will start at US$1099.

In the U.S. they will be available for pre-order from October 19 and will ship on October 26. We’ll probably see similar if not the same dates here based on past launches.

I am extremely interested to see what the Australian pricing will look like.

4:45am: And we’re wrapping up quickly with some HomePod updates. You will now be able to create a stereo pair with two devices for an immersive sound stage. You will also now be able to search for songs by lyrics, make and receive calls and ping Apple devices to find them from the HomePod.

Siri Shortcuts will also be included on these devices.

There is also going to be a Dolby Atmos update to Apple TV. And lastly, iOS Mojave will be coming out of beta for a release on September 24.


And that’s it for the live blog! Thanks for getting up at this ungodly hour to watch along with us and to enjoy just how many of those iPhone and Apple Watch 4 leaks were accurate.

Keep your eyes peeled for more on the iPhone Xs, Xs Max and XR releases through the day — that’s right, we’re working through. We’re hoping to hall of the Australian-specific details up as soon as we possible.