After almost two years of waiting, Apple fans can finally say it: Five is alive.

At a media event in San Francisco on Wednesday, Apple introduced the long-awaited iPhone 5, a redesigned iPhone that is taller and thinner than last year's iPhone 4S and that adds a larger, 4.0-inch display. That boost in screen size represents the first-ever change to the longstanding 3.5-inch display that graced the original iPhone in 2007 and every iPhone after it -- and is perhaps a response to the larger displays on Samsung and HTC smartphones.

Indeed, the iPhone 5 is full of cosmetic changes: At 7.6 millimeters thick and weighing 112 grams, the iPhone goes from a relatively heavy and short smartphone to one of the thinnest and lightest available. It is now closer in screen size and dimensions to the larger, more lightweight Android smartphones that have been chasing it for years.

The iPhone 5 also has multiple internal and software changes, including 4G LTE capability, which will allow it to connect to the faster cellular network that carriers like Verizon and AT&T have been aggressively advertising; a new A6 processor, a chip that Apple's Phil Schiller claimed was twice as fast as the A5 processor in the iPhone 4S; iOS 6, the next-generation mobile operating system with new maps and improvements to Siri detailed in June; and enhancements to the battery life as well as the speed and quality of the rear camera.

Apple also, as expected, changed the size of the dock connector on the bottom of the phone, making it 80 percent smaller. The connecting cord (which Apple calls "Lightning," as a companion to its Thunderbolt connector) is far smaller than its predecessor, a wide, thick connector that debuted with the original iPod. For old iPhone and iPod accessories like speaker docks and car chargers that use the "classic" connector, Apple will sell an adapter. The adapter will sell for $29, or $39 for an adapter with a short cable.

Though the iPhone 5 was certainly the star of Apple's show, the Cupertino company unveiled a few other new products, too. The iTunes desktop application has been overhauled with a new layout for the iTunes Store, easier playlist management, and integration with iCloud. It will be available for free download late October.

A thinner and lighter iPod Nano, with a larger touchscreen display and home button, also debuted, as did a new iPod Touch, which will come with the same 4-inch Retina display as the iPhone 5, improved front and rear cameras, and a faster graphics processor. The new iPod Touch will start at $299 for a 32GB model, while the new iPod Nano comes with 16GB storage for $149. Both will go on sale in October.

Apple also introduced an update to its iconic, yet oft-ridiculed, line of headphones. It has redesigned its "earbuds" into what it calls "earpods," which will be included with new iPods and iPhones and are also available as a standalone purchase.

The immediate focus after the event, however, will likely be on the cosmetic changes to the iPhone 5: the new height, a new two-tone design on the back cover, and the larger screen. Many expected Apple to unveil the "iPhone 5," a device that would rethink the design of the iPhone 4 and bring a larger display, at last year's iPhone event. When Apple instead introduced the iPhone 4S -- an iPhone with internal improvements and Siri, but no real exterior changes -- many were disappointed. This year, however, Apple did indeed change up both the design and the size of the display.

The iPhone is Apple's most important product financially, making up about 60 percent of its revenue. Having been surpassed in single-product sales for the first time by Samsung's Galaxy S III last month, and with Microsoft and Nokia committed to spending on advertising for the new Lumia 920, Apple will need consumers to embrace the redesign as much as they did the non-redesign of the smash hit iPhone 4S. (That is, perhaps, why the company chose to name its newest phone "the iPhone 5," and not simply "the new iPhone," as it did with the iPad. Since phone-shoppers have been waiting for "the iPhone 5" for well over a year, it already has a built-in audience).

The iPhone 5 will come in black or white, and a 16GB model will cost $199 with a new two-year contract. The iPhone 4S will start at $99 on contract, and the iPhone 4 will be free. (Say goodbye to the rounded corners of the iPhone 3GS, in other words).

Pre-orders will begin on Friday, Sept. 14, and will start shipping and be available in stores on Friday, Sept. 21.

Five is, indeed, alive: Now, Apple will find out if its larger iPhone can not only live, but thrive.

Below, check out photos of the iPhone 5:

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  • An Associated Press reporter holds the Apple EarPods during a product review in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

  • The Apple EarPods are shown during a product review in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

  • Apple unveils new iPhone model

    Technology giant Apple has unveiled a raft of updated products including the latest model of its new iPhone. The iPhone 5, which weighs in at 112 grammes, has a 4in screen - half an inch bigger than previous models, at Kings Place, Central London.

  • Apple unveils new iPhone model

    Technology giant Apple has unveiled a raft of updated products including the latest model of its new iPhone. The iPhone 5, which weighs in at 112 grammes, has a 4in screen - half an inch bigger than previous models, at Kings Place, Central London.

  • Apple unveils new iPhone model

    Technology giant Apple has unveiled a raft of updated products including the latest model of its new iPhone. The iPhone 5, which weighs in at 112 grammes, has a 4in screen - half an inch bigger than previous models, at Kings Place, Central London.

  • Apple unveils new iPhone model

    Technology giant Apple has unveiled a raft of updated products including the latest model of its new iPhone. The iPhone 5, which weighs in at 112 grammes, has a 4in screen - half an inch bigger than previous models, at Kings Place, Central London.

  • Apple unveils new iPhone model

    Technology giant Apple has unveiled a raft of updated products including the latest model of its new iPhone. The iPhone 5, which weighs in at 112 grammes, has a 4in screen - half an inch bigger than previous models, at Kings Place, Central London.

  • Apple unveils new iPhone model

    Technology giant Apple has unveiled a raft of updated products including the latest model of its new iPhone. The iPhone 5, which weighs in at 112 grammes, has a 4in screen - half an inch bigger than previous models, at Kings Place, Central London.

  • Apple unveils new iPhone model

    Technology giant Apple has unveiled a raft of updated products including the latest model of its new iPhone. The iPhone 5, which weighs in at 112 grammes, has a 4in screen - half an inch bigger than previous models, at Kings Place, Central London.

  • Apple unveils new iPhone model

    Technology giant Apple has unveiled a raft of updated products including the latest model of its new iPhone. The iPhone 5, which weighs in at 112 grammes, has a 4in screen - half an inch bigger than previous models, at Kings Place, Central London.

  • The new Apple iPhone 5 is displayed Wednesday Sept. 12, 2012 following the introduction of new products in San Francisco. The iPhone 5 is a blend of beauty, utility and versatility. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

  • Apple unveils new iPhone model

    Technology giant Apple has unveiled a raft of updated products including the latest model of its new iPhone. The iPhone 5, which weighs in at 112 grammes, has a 4in screen - half an inch bigger than previous models, at Kings Place, Central London.

  • Apple unveils new iPhone model

    Technology giant Apple has unveiled a raft of updated products including the latest model of its new iPhone. The iPhone 5, which weighs in at 112 grammes, has a 4in screen - half an inch bigger than previous models, at Kings Place, Central London.

  • Apple unveils new iPhone model

    Technology giant Apple has unveiled a raft of updated products including the latest model of its new iPhone. The iPhone 5, which weighs in at 112 grammes, has a 4in screen - half an inch bigger than previous models, at Kings Place, Central London.

  • Apple unveils new iPhone model

    Technology giant Apple has unveiled a raft of updated products including the latest model of its new iPhone. The iPhone 5, which weighs in at 112 grammes, has a 4in screen - half an inch bigger than previous models, at Kings Place, Central London.

  • Apple unveils new iPhone model

    Technology giant Apple has unveiled a raft of updated products including the latest model of its new iPhone. The iPhone 5, which weighs in at 112 grammes, has a 4in screen - half an inch bigger than previous models, at Kings Place, Central London.

  • Apple Introduces iPhone 5

    SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 12: The new iPhone 5 is displayed during an Apple special event at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts on September 12, 2012 in San Francisco, California. Apple announced the iPhone 5, the latest version of the popular smart phone. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

  • Apple Introduces iPhone 5

    SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 12: Apple Senior Vice President of Worldwide product marketing Phil Schiller announces the new iPhone 5 during an Apple special event at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts on September 12, 2012 in San Francisco, California. Apple announced the iPhone 5, the latest version of the popular smart phone. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

  • Apple Introduces iPhone 5

    SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 12: The new iPhone 5 is displayed during an Apple special event at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts on September 12, 2012 in San Francisco, California. Apple announced the iPhone 5, the latest version of the popular smart phone. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

  • <a href="http://www.engadget.com/2012/09/12/apple-iphone-5-liveblog/" target="_hplink">Courtesy of Engadget.</a>

  • <a href="http://www.engadget.com/2012/09/12/apple-iphone-5-liveblog/" target="_hplink">Courtesy of Engadget.</a>

  • <a href="http://www.engadget.com/2012/09/12/apple-iphone-5-liveblog/" target="_hplink">Courtesy of Engadget.</a>

  • <a href="http://www.engadget.com/2012/09/12/apple-iphone-5-liveblog/" target="_hplink">Courtesy of Engadget.</a>

  • Apple Introduces iPhone 5

    SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 12: Apple Senior Vice President of Worldwide product marketing Phil Schiller announces the new iPhone 5 during an Apple special event at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts on September 12, 2012 in San Francisco, California. Apple announced the iPhone 5, the latest version of the popular smart phone. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

  • Phil Schiller

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, speaks on stage during an introduction of the new iPhone 5 at an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

  • The iPhone 5 is shown during an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

  • Phil Schiller

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, speaks on stage during an introduction of the new iPhone 5 at an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

  • Apple Introduces iPhone 5

    SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 12: Apple Senior Vice President of Worldwide product marketing Phil Schiller announces the new iPhone 5 during an Apple special event at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts on September 12, 2012 in San Francisco, California. Apple announced the iPhone 5, the latest version of the popular smart phone. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

  • Apple Introduces iPhone 5

    SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 12: Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks during an Apple special event at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts on September 12, 2012 in San Francisco, California. Apple announced the iPhone 5, the latest version of the popular smart phone. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

  • Phil Schiller

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, speaks about camera quality of the iPhone 5 during an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

  • Phil Schiller

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, speaks on stage during an introduction of the new iPhone 5 at an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

  • Tim Cook

    Apple CEO Tim Cook talks on stage during the introduction of the new iPhone 5 in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

  • Phil Schiller

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, gives prices of the iPhone 5 during an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

  • The Foo Fighters perform during an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

  • Phil Schiller

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, speaks on stage about new connectivity options during an introduction of the new iPhone 5 in San Francisco, Wednesday Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

  • Greg Joswiak

    CORRECTS ID TO GREG JOSWIAK, NOT EDDY CUE - Greg Joswiak, Apple’s vice president of Hardware Product Marketing, speaks about EarPods during an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

  • Tim Cook

    Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks in front of an image of the iPhone 5 during an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

  • Tim Cook

    Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks during an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

  • The Foo Fighters perform during an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

  • Phil Schiller

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, gives release dates of the iPhone 5 during an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

  • Phil Schiller

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, speaks on stage about the introduction of a new operating system during an introduction of the new iPhone 5 in San Francisco, Wednesday Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

  • Phil Schiller

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, speaks on stage about new connectivity options during an introduction of the new iPhone 5 in San Francisco, Wednesday Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

  • Phil Schiller

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, speaks on stage about new connectivity features during an introduction of the new iPhone 5 in San Francisco, Wednesday Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

  • Phil Schiller

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, talks about the features of the new camera and iSight during an introduction of the new iPhone 5 at an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

  • Phil Schiller

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, speaks about camera quality of the iPhone 5 during an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

  • Phil Schiller

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, speaks in front of an image of the iPhone 5 during an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

  • Phil Schiller

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, speaks in front of an image of the iPhone 5 during an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

  • Tim Cook

    Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks in front of an image of an iPad during an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

  • Phil Schiller

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, speaks on stage during an introduction of the new iPhone 5 at an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday Sept. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

  • Apple iPhone

  • Apple Introduces iPhone 5

    SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 12: Apple Senior Vice President of Worldwide product marketing Phil Schiller announces the new iPhone 5 during an Apple special event at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts on September 12, 2012 in San Francisco, California. Apple announced the iPhone 5, the latest version of the popular smart phone. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

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