2 Students’ Thoughts on the New iPhone and the New iOS

This is a series where two Help Desk students trade their remarks and thoughts on current tech events. The big event this week, obviously, is the WWDC 2013, Apple’s field day. Apple announced the iPhone 5S, the iPhone 5c, and iOS 7, all of which will be available later this month.

The New iOS

The new design of iOS 7. (source: Digital Trends)

Ronak: After seeing the full feature presentation of iOS 7, I found myself liking the new design of Apple’s new iOS quite a bit. This new design is much more clean looking than past iOS’s and I see this being popular with almost anyone who is already a fan of Apple products. However, as you see with any new additions, or in this case entire redesigns, it takes people a long time to get used to it, especially since Apple’s past iOS’s have been almost identical. As of now, before getting to play with it for extended periods of time, I feel that Apple is finally stepping up to the plate and getting in some useful features that in general just make people’s lives easier. Multitasking for all applications is the main one I’m looking at currently, and Apple is also claiming that they are managing this with “great battery life”, which I’d be very pleased to see.

I would still like to see some more customizability and overall personalization from Apple, though, that is one part of the spectrum I think Apple really needs to hit ASAP. Now while I like the new design for the most part, I can see how some people may find this to be less of what they wanted. With Apple’s lack of “individuality”, if you must, there is no real way to get around this new design without a jailbreak, and I can clearly see how Matthew Panzarino argues in his article that iOS7 was actually developed for the new generation of Apple customers, the kids. Not to say that it was a horrible idea on Apple’s part to clean up the pallet, but Panzarino makes some very valid arguments and has me just about convinced.

I can’t say all that much right now, but once Burlington gets iOS 7, I will be able to give a more comprehensive review. I have high expectations of Apple’s newest iOS, though, and I’m kind of excited to be able to play with it very soon.

Xin: Apple decides to finally make the leap after 7 years of stagnation and seeing their competitors making leaps and bounds with their user interface. While Android users had their widgets and live wallpapers since the prehistoric age, when dinosaurs still roamed and fire was “the next big thing”, iOS stuck with the same 4×4 grid of app icons for years until the iPhone 5, when they made the miracle jump to a 4×5 grid.

Clearly inspired from the success of that extra row of icons, Apple decided that they should copy more from their competitors make even more changes. Everything now has colors, and everything looks clean. This is a good and refreshing change, and it is nice to finally see some from a company that’s been so afraid of said change.

iOS 7 will be a relearning process for every iOS user. Apps will work differently and hand gestures will be different (think Windows 8). To put it in short, Help Desk will be a very busy place when iOS 7 is released.

The iPhone 5S and the iPhone 5c

R: Apple’s brand new iPhone, the iPhone 5c, featuring all kinds of new colors!

The new iPhone has a new look, with different, bright and bold colors (which reminds me again of how Apple is starting to lean towards the newer generations). I’m sure with the new iPhone, iOS 7 will look great, and hopefully not lag. Don’t be afraid, though! Apple isn’t planning on changing much, “because it has the things people loved about the iPhone 5 inside. And more”. There is a new A6 chip in it that delivers impressive, and energy-efficient graphics and performance. And once more, Apple has upgraded their camera to give clearer picture on the 4-inch Retina display that I actually think will look really nice.

Honestly speaking, the new iPhone looks like all the rest to me, not in the sense that it is physically exactly the same, but rather, like very new version, it is a little bit bigger, it has better processor, and I guess an overall sleeker look. I think that coming out with so many iPhones so quickly has really (for me) taken away from the excitement. I remember when in 2007, the first iPhone was released, it blew the audience away. Steve Jobs’ first unveilof it was not only the most hyped up, but also the coolest, because back then, the iPhone had some crazy advantages over other phones. More recently, iOS 7 has been picking up the pace and adding brand new features. But Apple claims that they didn’t just want to redesign the iPhone and add new colors, they wanted “an entirely new expression of what an iPhone can be”. From a critical (my) standpoint, to me this seems like mostly talk, because in reality the phone has not even been upgraded all that much, it even contains iPhone 5 parts. This pretty much means to me that Apple knows their fan base, and that for them it isn’t really about the product itself, but rather the name thats on it.

X: I’ll give Apple credit for finally doing some innovation since 2007 (when the first iPhone came out and literally blew everyone’s minds) with the fingerprint sensor, or Touch ID. It is genuinely a good idea, and I genuinely believe it will change the way we think about passwords. But even then there’s the paranoia: Apple claims the user’s fingerprints will never ever touch their servers, it’ll be saved on a chip within the phone. The U.S. Government also said they weren’t spying on their citizens, but then there was that thing.

The rest is just typical Apple: slightly better camera, slightly better processor, and slightly better Siri. After all, it is what the S in every iPhone model has stood for: slightly better. That gold iPhone does look cool though.

The iPhone 5c, on the other hand, is a sneaky way of Apple getting even more money out of their customer’s wallets. It’s got iPhone 5 parts, which I’m sure they have a lot left over in their factories, and its got colorful plastic slapped on it. There is nothing wrong with plastic phones, and these look and feel better than anything Samsung’s ever made, but when Apple is offering a plastic case for the same plastic phone at the great value of $29, you know it’s consumerism at its finest.

The ridiculous iPhone 5c plastic covers. (source: Apple Insider)

Spend that $29 somewhere else, unless you want the back of your phone to look like a game of Connect 4.

Side note: the C does not stand for “cheap”. $99 for a phone is not “cheap”.

The effectiveness of iOS 7 on the iPad 2

X: I remember updating my now 3 year old iPod Touch to iOS 5, intoxicated by the promise of a better user experience. As the progress bar finally hit “100%” and my iPod was rebooting, its new insides ready, my excitement reached a tipping point…. until I saw the familiar aforementioned grid, and realized that changes were marginal, and all I had in my hands was a laggier iPod. That trend continued with iOS 6, and will continue with iOS 7.

That’s the problem facing iPad 2s. It’s an outdated device running updated software. Another thing to consider: iPad 2s do not have retina display, so unless Apple has made changes to its UI specifically for the iPad 2 (which I hope they do), iOS 7 is going to look terrible on an iPad 2. iPad 3, iPad 4, and Mini users, roam free.

R: It’s very easy to think that iOS 7 will run and look amazing on any Apple device, especially the way that they present it. But in reality it will be nothing of the sort, the device is outdated, and the software is updated, there’s really no getting around it. Pretty much exactly like Xin said, unless Apple decided to make some major UI changes for JUST the iPad 2’s, iOS7 is going to be no fun.

It’ll be interesting though, to see how far Apple has gone with iOS 7, and to see how much it makes my iPad lag, which I’m assuming it will. With the past iOS updates, there has been a solid trend of immense lag and battery eating, and I haven’t been convinced yet that this will be so much different than the past.

I remember that on my first year of being on the Help Desk, when iOS 6 was released, and everyone updated to it, there was a rush of people every morning during first period who needed help, and that was not even a huge change from iOS 5. I’m more curious right now to see how this works in a school system, and to see how people will review it when they get to play with it.

One word that describes the audience at WWDC 2013?

X: Drones.

R: *Clap*

What do you think of Ronak’s and Xin’s review? Help Desk would love to hear your thoughts and comments!

One thought on “2 Students’ Thoughts on the New iPhone and the New iOS

  1. Pingback: Help Desk Reflection: Week 2 | Ronak Patel's Blog

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