A Nerd’s Review: The iPhone XS

From the hyped-up keynote to the adrenaline filled pre-order evening, I finally got in my hands the all new iPhone XS Max. This year Apple introduced three new models to the iPhone X lineup, and two of those were the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max. The only difference between the two is battery life and screen size. The iPhone XS Max is just about the same size as the iPhone 6 Plus, 7 Plus and 8 Plus—and so, it’s a familiar size for many plus owners. The only difference, it’s essentially all screen! This was what I wanted when the iPhone X was released this time last year. I wanted an all screen plus-sized iPhone, but instead, I settled for the smaller brother. At least, until now.

My first thought about this year’s announcements, was that there wasn’t much to cover. Until I wrote myself a list and realised (for an “S” year upgrade) there’s actually quite a number of improvements. Apart from the larger display on the iPhone XS Max, there’s also stronger glass (for all you clumsy phone owners), faster speeds with the new A12 Bionic chip, iP68 water/dust resistance, gigabit LTE, dual sim support, improved battery, huge updates to the camera and much more.

The camera is by far where the iPhone XS saw the most improvements. I took a trip to Lake Tekapo in the South Island of New Zealand and put the new camera through its paces. Not only was battery life on the phone impressive, but the shots and videos that came out were certainly a new standard (for what can be captured from something that goes in your pocket).

The updates to the iPhone 8 over the iPhone 7 weren’t huge, and I felt it didn’t justify a new title (but rather should’ve been the iPhone 7S). But, this is certainly for me one of the biggest updates in an “S” year. I’m looking forward to seeing what Apple brings to the table next, like the rumoured iPad Pro that mirrors the new standard of bezel-less design (even if technology hasn’t advanced enough to eliminate that pesky notch).

– Michael Topschij.

A Nerd’s Confusion: What is this!

Hi there, I’m an iPhone! Wait, no you’re not an iPhone. Where is your Apple logo? You have this strange square box logo thingamajig. Imposter!

I had absolutely no idea about the OnePlus android phone brand until my friend introduced me to his a few years ago. They were kind of a nothing phone to me until I recently came across their latest attempt at trying to be the next big thing. And this time, that attempt is to blatantly copy the design of the iPhone 7. If you didn’t know already, I’m an Apple fanboy. I love their products and design. (Some company tactics, less so). In an article on BGR OnePlus is quoted saying:

the company never wants to be different for the sake of being different. Instead, it tries to make design choices that are familiar to users.

Despite it’s blatant copy of the iPhone (which I really think Apple should do something about, I mean seriously, what is this!?) the phone has what I would call a nicer looking version of Android than what I’ve been used to seeing. Whilst at the same time, they do continue to fall short of the amazing phone they’re copying. The two cameras they’ve added don’t even have a full 2x optical zoom like the iPhone.

what is this!?

With this year being the 10th anniversary of the iPhone (I may or may have not ordered a brand new iPhone 1st gen that is on it’s way to me) and  one thing that I’m most definitely looking forward to, following a flurry of rumours, is the iPhone 8. The iPhone 7 Plus of mine, is a powerhouse. It’s the best iPhone that Apple has made. So with a monumental celebratory year, it’s going to be exciting to see what Apple decides to release later in this year.

– Michael Topschij.

 

A Writer’s Full On Day

From seeing Michelle Obama talk in person to visiting Twitter headquarters and even being on the news, it has been one heck of a full on day for me here at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference. The morning began with a ‘fireside’ chat between Michelle Obama and Apple’s Lisa Jackson. They spoke candidly about what’s been going on with Michelle lately in addition to discussing advice for areas such as business, making an impact on the world, diversity in the app development world, inspiration for women and of course fun stories from the White House.

“Do not fall, at least not in front of the cameras. Because you will be a meme for the rest of your life.”

My day continued with a sudden but exciting interview with ABC 7 to discuss my reactions to what Michelle had to share.

Check out the full interview by clicking on me!

Before the morning had finished, my friend and I made our way on into San Francisco. We we’re very privileged to be able to visit the headquarters for Twitter. I got to enjoy lunch from the amazing buffet of food and even enjoy a smoothie from the free smoothie bar!

It was certainly a most exciting second day here at WWDC. I’ll be spending the rest of the week getting hard to work on my projects with app development. I’ll be talking with engineers and experts from Apple and making the most out of the conference.

– Michael Topschij.

A Nerd’s Impression: Apple’s HomePod

Today Apple introduced something expected (and unexpected) at the worldwide developers conference a.k.a dub dub. A speaker. That would be, a speaker that you can talk to. A speaker that when it starts up, analyses the room it is in so that when it starts to play, it sounds amazing. HomePod as Apple calls it, is a wireless speaker that has built in Siri (Apple’s smart assistant) to allow users to control their media playback. The biggest push that Apple feels separates their speaker from the competition, is the quality of the audio. From their press release they state that it has;

Spatial awareness to sense its location in a room and automatically adjust the audio.

It’s 18 centimetres tall. Comes in black and white. It has a built in “A8” chip that powers the way it thinks and works. You can even use an iPhone to get it setup, similar to the way you can quick setup with the new iOS 11 or currently on an Apple Watch.

HomePod will be available starting in December, initially in Australia, the UK and the US.

– Michael. Topschij.

 

A Writer’s Big Day: WWDC 2017

I think it’s fair for me to say that I am more than ready for bed. It’s been a long day. Waking up at 5 in the morning to then stand in line for hours for a very fully packed morning at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference 2017. This is the second year in a row for me to be attending and as always the lining up was a little brutal.

The keynote address was full of wonderful nerdy goodness. I work as a developer making apps/games for iPhone. We got to see some awesome changes and also some awesome (again) new stuff. A new iPad, a freaking wow space grey iMac that is one heck of a machine. Then finally a speaker that has Siri built in. Something heavily rumoured, but released to much excitement for all us fanboys sitting in the audience.

Coming up in the week there’s some more interesting and exciting events including a special talk with Michelle Obama. I’ll be attending that one, for sure.

– Michael Topschij.