Apple unveiled the latest versions of its iPad Air and iPad Mini at an event at its headquarters in Cupertino, California, on Thursday.
The iPad Air 2 will boast a thinner frame, the Touch ID fingerprint sensor and access to mobile payments service Apple Pay, available starting Monday. It starts at $499 for a 16 GB model.
Both the iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 3 will be available in gold, silver and space gray. Pre-orders open up October 17.
For updates from the Apple event as they happened, scroll down below.
2:20 p.m.: Cook returns to the stage to wrap up. Thanks for following along.
2:16 p.m.: Schiller says the Mac Mini will get an upgrade, and a lower price: $499. It ships today along with the new iMac.
2:13 p.m.: The iMacs start with a new 3.5GHz quad-core i5 chip, upgradeable to a 4.0 GHz quad-core i7. The new iMacs start at $2,499.
2:10 p.m.: The iMac will boast a 5K display with 14.7 million pixels, 67% more pixels than a 4K HD display.
2:06 p.m.: Schiller moves on to the retina displays for iPhones, iPads and Macs. Schiller reveals the crisper displays will appear on iMacs.
2:03 p.m.: The iPad Mini 3 was also revealed, starting at $399. It’s also available in gold, silver and space gray. Both the iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 3 will be available for pre-order October 17. Apple is also trimming the price of earlier iPad Mini and iPad Air models by $100.
2:00 p.m.: The iPad Air 2 will be available in gold, silver and space gray. The 16GB will sell for $499, 64 GB for $599 and 128 GB for $699. LTE versions will cost $130 more.
1:57 p.m.: Schiller walks the crowd through a pair of interesting photo and video apps, including Pixelmator, which boasts an incredibly sophisticated set of editing tools, and Replay, which takes a series of short clips, quickly adds animations and creates a simple movie. Very cool.
1:54 p.m.: Apple Pay will be available on the iPad Air 2, but only for online purchases made on the tablet.
1:52 p.m.: The LTE and Wi-Fi will be faster on the Air 2 compared to the original. Schiller also says the iPad will add Touch ID.
1:48 p.m.: Schiller says the iPad Air 2 will include 10 hours of battery life, and adds the M8 co-processor. The camera gets an upgrade, now an 8-megapixel iSight camera and image signal processing through the new A8X chip.
1:46 p.m.: The new iPad also includes an anti-reflective coating, the only tablet with this type of surface, says Schiller. It now includes an A8X chip with graphics that are 2.5 times faster.
1:43 p.m.: Cook rolls out on stage with the iPad Air 2. “Can you even see it?,” jokes Cook, describing the tablet’s thin frame. And it looks like it’s available in gold. Apple’s Phil Schiller says it’s 18% thinner than the first iPad Air.
1:41 p.m.: Cook says the iPad now boasts 675,000 apps. “So what do you do when you make the best tablet in the world, how do you make it better?” Cook says. “You do this.” Cue the video montage of what is presumably the next iPad.
1:38 p.m.: Cook gets to the likely star of the event, the iPad. “It’s always been a unique blend of simplicity and capability,” he says. Cook says they’ve sold more than 225 million iPads worldwide.
1:35 p.m.: Federighi says Yosemite will be available on the Mac App Store for free starting today. Meanwhile, iOS 8.1 will launch Monday.
1:32 p.m.: Federighi now calling Apple’s “Chief of Secrecy,” Stephen Colbert, via Mac. “I’ve got a big problem with my title,” jokes Colbert, suggesting alternatives such as “Intergalactic Chancellor.” Federighi opts for “Supreme Commander of Secrecy.”
1:29 p.m.: Federighi focusing on Continuity, which allows users to easily start projects or tasks on one device, then seamlessly pick it up on another. It will function on iPhones, iPads and Macs, going through iCloud.
1:26 p.m.: Federighi discusses how Apple devices will communicate better with each other. He says the company has made improvements in how gadgets work together through Wi-Fi and BlueTooth, helping to enable new features such as the ability to AirDrop between Macs and iPhones or iPads, and using AirPlay for Apple TV without a required Wi-Fi connection.
1:22 p.m.: Federighi quickly jumps to Yosemite, which will include a big overhaul for browser Safari and tweaks to the interface and toolbar. It also includes tweaks to Mail, including Mail Drop for larger attachments.
1:19 p.m.: Federighi jumps to the next update: iOS 8.1. Among the key upgrades: added support for Apple Pay, access to the public beta of iCloud Photo Library.
1:15 p.m.: Federighi offers a quick tour of the new features on iOS 8, including widgets, family sharing, access to third-party keyboards, and the suite of Health apps.
1:13 p.m.: Cook turns it over to Craig Federighi, who will break down updates to iOS 8 and Yosemite, the operating system for Macs. He says 48% of iOS device owners are running iOS 8.
1:11 p.m.: Cook is talking about Apple Watch, the company’s first move into the growing wearable market. Cook says the company created WatchKit, a software development kit for developers to work on watch apps. It rolls out in November.
1:09 p.m.: Cook says Apple Pay will launch Monday, October 20.
1:07 p.m.: Cook shifting quickly to Apple Pay, which the company introduced during the iPhone announcement event in September. “We think it is going to be profound,” says Cook, who notes an additional 500 banks have signed on to support Apple Pay.
1:05 p.m.: Cook talks about the fast start of the new iPhones, which will launch in China “in a few hours,” says Cook. It’s the fastest selling iPhone ever, according to Apple’s CEO.
1:03 p.m.: Apple CEO Tim Cook appears on stage to kick off the event. “We’ve got a few more things to share with you before we close out the year.”
1:02 p.m. ET: The event begins with a video depicting a familiar scene at most Apple product launches: long lines at stores. In this case, it’s for last month’s launch of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.
Reports suggest Apple will reveal two tablets: the follow-up to the iPad Air, and the latest model of the iPad Mini with Retina Display. Both iPads are expected to sport the Touch ID fingerprint sensor available on the company’s iPhones.
The company could also share more details on Apple Pay, the mobile payments service introduced in September with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.
The arrival of new iPads comes as the tablet market is showing signs of a slowdown. Research firm Gartner says sales of tablets will represent less than 10% of all devices this year, as users cling to older tablets.
Macs will draw some attention as well. Apple will likely share information on Yosemite, the latest version of Apple’s OS X operating system for Macs.
Follow Brett Molina on Twitter: @brettmolina23.
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