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TAKEAWAYS FROM THE IPHONE 7 LAUNCH
As any Iphone release event goes, the most latest Apple keynote was met with both praise and criticism by consumers. It has almost become a tradition for consumers to pull out their pitch forks in protest of the newest Iphone’s features, functionality, and physical appearance compared to previous versions. As Apple strives forward in their pursuit of perfection, they seem to have developed a consistent ability to take the first step further in the world of smartphones and technology. No differently, they attempted to take this step once again during the launch of the Iphone 7 and Apple Watch Series 2. Along with some cool new features including water resistance and a ‘non-clicky’ home button, here are the top 3 takeaways from the September 7, 2016 launch.
What do you mean there’s no headphone jack?
Possibly one of the most talked about topics following the release of the Iphone 7 was the removal of the standard 3.5 mm headphone jack. So wait, the company who made their name with portable music devices and has gained millions of subscribers on Apple Music wants us to not be able to plug in our headphones? Well, not exactly. Apple announced that they have removed the 3.5 mm headphone jack and the headphones included with the phone will now plug into the Lightning port, the same one used for charging the device. I understand peoples’ frustration towards removing a universal port that has been utilized for headphones and portable speakers for decades across many devices. But that’s exactly the point, it has…been…decades! Similar to how there was a backlash against the company’s idea to change the charging port in the Iphone 5, consumers seem to be having difficulty letting go of old features for newer, more advanced ones. As consumers we always want newer, advanced technology yet we have a hard time letting go of old trends at times. Although you can still use the wired headphones through the Lightning port, what Apple is actually doing is attempting to introduce the future of portable music and communication, with wireless headphones also known as “AirPods”. It reminds me of the first car maker who decided to stop including cassette players in cars when CD’s became popular. Consumers were irate. Everybody questioned what would become of their Elton John cassette collections. But eventually, CD’s are what everyone moved towards, and eventually all car makers stopped including cassette players in their vehicles. Why? Because it was the future. The truth is nobody likes to step out of their comfort zone, but we should embrace the technology of the future because, in many cases, it makes our lives more efficient and enjoyable. I know I would rather be listening to digital music rather than rewinding cassette tapes with a pencil…
For those who still want to use their wired headphones, Apple did say they would be including a 3.5 mm adapter in the box with every device.
The Iphone 7 plus features never before seen dual rear-facing cameras. Why would you need two of the exact same camera lenses? Correct, you wouldn’t, as the two lenses actually have their own unique functionality. One of them is for wide-angle shots while the second has a special telephoto lens for, simply put, and insane amount of zoom capability. Apple also implemented into the camera a “depth” function, or the ability to blur the background of an image in order for the foreground of the photo to stand out more. Both cameras are 12 megapixels and were boasted by Apple to take excellent low light images. For the selfie lovers, there’s a 7 megapixel front-facing camera with facial detection and 720p and 1080p video recording capability. Apple was proud to compare the cameras in the Iphone 7 plus to those used by professional photographers, stating that the device would be an essential part of any photographer’s set of equipment. If true, this is an impressive feat for a camera you can carry in your pocket.
For those interested in purchasing the Iphone 7, know that the dual camera is only available on the Iphone 7 plus. However, for everyday pictures and the Instagram artist in you, the single 12 megapixel camera with improved optical image stabilizing is still a solid snapper to be working with.
Apple Watch Series 2
Along with the Iphone 7, Apple also announced their new Apple Watch Series 2. Although similar to the original on the outside, the Series 2 features a dual core processer, is water resistant up to 50 metres, and is accompanied by a special Nike edition which has increased functionality specifically for runners. The water resistant feature is designed to be especially useful for swimmers. Wearing the watch while swimming will allow the device to provide you feedback on your swim, such as number of laps, lap times and heart rate. Gone are the days of a friend standing outside the pool with a stopwatch. Now swimmers can obtain specific information and analysis of their swim in real time. This is the future of technology and the future of athletic training. With these features, you no longer have to be a professional athlete to train like the professionals. However, it would be interesting to see how developers produce applications which could reach the same level of functionality with other sports, not just swimming and running. Speaking of developers, one of the key points regarding the Apple watch is that, since the original model was released, it was a whole new device for developers to begin designing apps for. The idea of a compact device on your wrist opens the door to endless possibilities for app creation.
Some final thoughts on the Apple watch. The built in GPS is a neat addition to the device as it is able to track walking and hiking routes without a cellular connection, and without the use of your phone. Again, this opens the door to endless possibilities for the creation of any app which can take advantage of the built-in GPS. Finally, it will be interesting to see how it works, but the only port of entry for water into the device is through the speaker, which will apparently have an “eject” function to drain any water that has entered. Although an upgrade to the processor, athletic-friendly functionality, and built-in GPS are improvements from the original, the Apple Watch Series 2 still appears to lag behind its competitors in the business of producing ‘smart watches’.
At least you’ll be able to play Pokemon Go on it, though.
Written by: Yasser Malik
Date: September 9th, 2016
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