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Rapid Reaction: iPhone 6 release – mobileFreq
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iPhone 6…the phone that the world has been waiting for since the iPhone 5S.  Rumored to be the last Apple device to be built with Steve Jobs’ influence.  I’ll start with the negatives because I like to end on positive notes.  Click one of the links below to expand the content!

Areas of Improvement

  • Design-  To be fair this topic is also a positive.  The one thing that really irked me was the design of the camera.  I’m not talking about the camera itself, I’m sure it is an amazing shooter and takes wonderful photos, I’m talking about how it protrudes out from the back of the device.

“But they needed that extra space to accommodate a better camera sensor!”  I have no doubt that that is correct, but my problem is that they could have extended the back of the phone up to the top of the camera and make it flush like the iPhone 5S.  That way they would have had more space for a bigger battery or wireless charging.  I don’t care how thin you can make a phone, I want one that will last the entire day even if it is one or two millimeters thicker.

The other design flaw is that you no longer cannot set your iPhone down on a table and have it lay flat.

If you look at the above picture you will see something strange.  Can you guess?  No?  Well something is missing.  The camera.  Where the heck is the camera?  Did Apple actually Photoshop it out of their official release pictures?  If it was protruding out…you would clearly see it on the back of the iPhone 6/6 Plus.  Nope, not there.  Seems pretty odd to me.

So why would Apple design the iPhone 6 like this?  Cases.  A report from Business Insider back in 2012 shows that Apple makes more than half of its revenue from iPhone sales.  The average official iPhone case costs $29 from the Apple Store and we can assume is marked up heavily from the actual manufacturing costs.  I think that Apple’s plan is that they want you to walk out of their store not only with an iPhone, but also a case as well to further increase their profits.  It’s funny because once you slap the case on the iPhone, it will now magically lay even on a flat surface.  Seems like a very basic thing to overlook Mr. Jonathan Ive.

  • ● Price/Storage- This is 2014 and phones should no longer be 16GB.  At a minimum, 32GB is a necessity.  The only exception is if they have a micro SD card slot which all iDevices do not.  With cameras taking higher res pictures, videos being recorded in 1080p/slow-mo, and phones being used as our primary music device, space is an essential commodity.  Apparently Apple believes consumers still want 16GB.  Including the size of the OS you are probably down to around 12GB of actual storage.  Although, if you want 64GB you can pay an extra $100.  Thank$ Apple.  I don’t really think you have the consumers’ best interest in mind here.
  • ● Display-  The display on the iPhone 6 Plus is a gorgeous 1080p.  A clean and universal resolution.  Movies and videos naturally fill up the screen without any black bars or the image being stretched.  It is beautiful.  It is what the standard should be.  The resolution on the iPhone 6?  A gnarly 1334x750p.  That is just above 720p.  This isn’t 2011.  Another problem with the two different screen sizes is fragmentation.  There have been reports that apps have not scaled well between the two devices and users are frustrated.  Something that was synonymous with Android now comes to Apple (like most other things)!
  • ● Keynote Address-  This doesn’t have anything to do with the iPhone itself, but I feel like it should be worth mentioning…and forgetting.  It was bad.  It was not how a keynote should be done.  It didn’t have that “Apple feel” to it.  The event was live streamed on Apple.com and was plagued with several defects.  The stream constantly lost connection, denied users access, and at one point had a Chinese voice over for translation.

Enough with pessimism, let’s talk positives!

Ya did good, Apple

  • ● Design- Alright the design wasn’t all that bad.  Besides the camera ordeal it is one elegant device.  Those cameras by the way will be top-of-the-line.  Being an Apple product I can only assume that it feels fantastic to hold.  While some phandroids may be annoyed that they took design elements from the HTC flagship phone, the One, I actually am fond of it.  It is at least more uniform than the iPhone 5S with the two-tone back panel.  Overall it is a solid, premium device.  The whole bendgate thing that is going around right now is a bit ridiculous because I don’t think most people will apply that much force to warp their new phone.

  • ● Apple Pay- First off the name isn’t all that catchy, but oh well it gets the point across.  I would have gone for something more like iWallet or iPay.  The main thing to take away from Apple Pay is that they finally are going to make NFC payments mainstream.  Google tried with Google Wallet, but had a hard time with carrier involvement (AT&T and Verizon were both blocking it from the Play Store).  Android users should be glad because now it will really expand the amount of stores that have NFC card readers.  Oh and by the way, Apple won’t be installing any “special” hardware into stores.  There are several Mastercard PayPass readers all over already.  The other neat thing is that for an extra layer of security you can swipe your finger to allow a payment.  The unfortunate side is that it is only for iPhone 6/6 Plus because of the NFC chip inside the phone.

  • ● Same across the board-  One thing Apple does well is that each wireless carrier will have the exact same phone.  There are no special editions.  No extra features.  No different colors.  It is the same no matter what.  Good on them.

 

Head scratching moments

  • ● Let’s show some data- One thing that left me scratching my head was their data.  I guess it is a way for them to manipulate the audience with technically true information.  When they show graphs with only an X-axis labeled and nothing on the Y-axis, it’s kind of hard to believe what they are trying to say even if it is true.  I do not care if it is 84 times faster than the original iPhone.  That was seven years ago.  I want to know how it stacks up to last years model and possibly my contract-locked model from two years ago.  Show me those benchmarks.
  • ● The keynote intro-  I am so confused as to why they started off talking about Macs when they had nothing to do with the presentation.  Talk about iPhone.  The history of iPhone.  The amazing history carved out seven years ago.  Open up with that.  Not the 1984 Macintosh.  Not the early 1998 iMac.  Don’t use rhetoric like “[T]he biggest advancement in iPhone.”  It makes it seem a lot like Samsung’s “Next Big Thing” marketing.  I don’t know why a company that accuses one of copying their product would in fact use the exact same marketing tactic.
  • ● No front speakers?-  Another iPhone iteration goes by without front facing dual speakers.  I wish a media-rich device such as Apple’s iPhone would have a set of thumping speakers like my HTC One.  It makes listening to music or YouTube videos so much more enjoyable and I refuse to go back to single speakers firing in some random direction that isn’t my face.

I hope you enjoyed this breakdown of the Apple iPhone 6 release keynote.  If you have any questions or thoughts on the topic let me know below in the comments.  Thanks for reading.  Cheers!

Recent Penn State grad who loves all things mobile. Has a knack for teaching and enjoys a bit of alliteration.

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