App Overload

I download a lot of apps. I’ve gotten to the point where I download apps for every occasion. The problem with that is I get a couple uses out of the app and it just sits there, wasting space. I was about to download a water reminding app today and the question hit me, how many times will I use this app? What apps can I use in my arsenal that can handle this task? It took me about 10 seconds to figure out I could use the app Due to satisfy this need. I saved myself a download and more wasted space, mentally and physically.

That’s my plan from now on. Whenever I feel the need to download an app, I’ll start with my arsenal first. Now the next task is figuring out what apps I need to delete.

Preordering the iPhone X

For all those Apple maniacs like myself waiting for the iPhone X, I hope your alarm clocks go off a little later than mine on October 27th. Just joking, I hope we all get the iPhone X but the way things are looking, we need to be armed and ready to preorder this thing. iPhone 8 sales are not doing too great and I was hoping that would take some of the steam off.

I’m getting my girlfriend ready to preorder this thing with me on multiple computers, iOS devices and currently looking up all the tricks in the book to successfully get this thing November 3rd. I don’t know why Apple makes this so damn hard. They need to have a way to automatically send new iPhones out every year. That’s what I thought the Apple Upgrade Program was going to be. I pick the memory size the month before and they can just send me it on launch day, I don’t care about the price and neither does anyone else.

The reason why the demand for the iPhone X will be so crazy this year is because the iPhone was due for a change a long time ago. How can we flash our huge bezel iPhones off to Android users who are used to edge to edge displays. We look silly. Granted our iPhones probably work better but an edge to edge screen is the new craze now.

The iPhone 8 was a waste, they will still get money from it but that design in 2017 is akin to upgrading the MacBook Air with USB-C and a Touch Bar but leaving the screen the same. People will still buy the product but it’s disrespectful to the customers. We either keep the iPhones we have, upgrade to an iPhone 8 with the same screen we’ve seen for years, or shill out some outrageous fee for the iPhone X if we can even order the thing.

In an ideal world, they could have developed two tiers of the iPhone X. They would also scrap the iPhone 8 design so there would be complete focus at their factories to get these Xs made as fast as possible. There would be an iPhone X with OLED plus a stainless body and a cheaper version with a lower screen quality and aluminum body called the iPhone XS. Similar to the Apple Watch tiers. Customers would get the same design but not the best screen and body but many would not give a crap. The edge to edge design would be welcomed by the customers.

For us maniacs, we could order our OLED versions in peace and go about our day looking down on the less fortunate people with cheaper screens. Life would be good. More app developers would be on board to quickly upgrade and embrace the notch in their apps, probably even doing some wild and crazy things with it. But that’s not Apple, they will milk the crap out of their old designs until they no longer can, adding little trinkets like “Wireless Charging” while the industry innovates on design at a faster pace.

iPhone X Thoughts

My personal thoughts aside regarding the delayed launch dates, the iPhone X will be a welcome change to the current iPhone brand. Fast charging is going to make life a lot easier and will definitely be needed for iPhone Plus users who are used to longer battery life. I have fast charging on my iPad Pro 10.5 and it’s crazy how I get fully charged in a hour or two using a 29W USB-C charger. Looking at stats on Apple’s website, the iPhone X sits in the middle of its siblings (iPhone 8 and 8 Plus) when it comes to battery life.

The X has a more narrow screen next to its big brother the iPhone Plus but it is longer. The top notch is going to be weird to look at for a couple days but we’ll get use to it. That notch does give us Face ID which will be a game changer from all the interviews I’m reading, so you can’t be too mad at it.

Apple has also implemented more swiping gestures with the X since there is no home button. When it comes to these swipes and gestures, it brings me back to my Palm Pre days. I loved that phone but it became obsolete very quickly with the lack of development. The gestures were one of kind though and it’s up for debate as to whether Apple has stolen a page from that book. Switching apps and getting to the home page with a swipe were things the Palm Pre had going for itself. It even had magnetic charging or what you people call “Wireless Charging”.

I was a Palm fanatic back in the day, rocking the Trēo, Centro and eventually the Palm Pre. I would be on discussion boards fighting battles against the Apple “Sheep” as they were called. Eventually I had to switch over to Apple and have been content ever since. Although I enjoyed all the tweaking and modifications I was able to do with Palm, it lacked the yearly upgrades, stability and developer adoption Apple had and still grows today.

Now Apple has placed serious gesture controls into their flag ship phone for the masses. We are going to see some wild and creative things from the X, something the Palm Pre was not able to fulfill for us. It’s going to be a new way for many to handle and protect their phones, but in time it will become the normal way, that is until Apple finds another way.

Apple Event Let Down

The Apple Event is over and I’m pretty disappointed I have to wait untill October 27th to give them my money. The iPhone X is the only iPhone the crowd was excited about and to have us wait another 45 days to preorder is a slap in the face. We’re looking at early November before we can hold the iPhone X.

All in all, the only thing I’m a little enthusiastic about is the screen and smaller body which we already knew from rumors. FaceID appears decent and “Wireless”charging looks like a gimmick unless it supports fast charging. Apple’s official charging pad, dubbed AirPower, doesn’t come out until next year.

The Apple Watch LTE version seems nice but looking on the Apple website, we won’t get streaming music until later in the year. So basically I’ll have an independent watch that makes calls I never make and gets texts that almost always annoy me until Apple unlocks the streaming music feature. That sucks balls. Plus the Apple Watch app scene sucks at an even higher level right now. I foresee an LTE watch getting very little use in the near future.

So on the iPhones’ 10th anniversary we got a bunch of half baked items we have to wait for instead of something magical. Thanks Apple!

  1. We are still confused as to what Wireless actually means. Wireless means no contact and we still need contact to charge here.

Apple Event September 2017

A new iPhone, a new iOS system. Some extra surprises. It’s called an Apple Event and its coming again. This year it’s going to be held on the new Apple Park campus inside of the Steve Jobs Theater. I definitely want a smaller body iPhone with less bezel and bigger screen which is rumored this year. The current iteration has grown on me but with all the latest designs coming from Samsung and other phone manufactures, its leaving the iPhone design really outdated.

I like to see how Apple sells the iPhone 7S design to the public when there will be a more modern looking iPhone with less bezel right next to it. Even if it costs more, its going to be the phone everyone wants. With the way the phone pricing structure works in America, the costs won’t do too much to deter a buyer from the iPhone they really want. $55-65 bucks a month extra to rent an iPhone 8 (X, 10 or whatever it will be called) won’t be too much of a burden to many.

That means preorders will be crazy again, maybe worse and from all the rumors about shortages, this will cause a lot of delays if you aren’t first to preorder. They recently sent out a notice about customers of the Apple Upgrade program who can now send their iPhones in via mail. That means even more people preordering online vs waiting in a line.

If we lived in a perfect world, I’m sure Apple would’ve loved an iPhone 8 design for the whole line this year. We don’t and because of that we are going to have a shit show of preorders and people mad about delays.

Another concern is Qualcomm’s lack of involvement in the iPhone. For the last 2 years I’ve intentionally bought iPhones from Verizon or factory unlocked that have the Qualcomm chip. This allows me to switch between CDMA and GSM because of reception issues in different locations. Apple and Qualcomm have been in a dispute for a while so I’m now wondering how the chip set will work this year.

We will see tomorrow. I just want my iPhone X in black with 256GB or more, some new Apple AirPods and a new Apple TV.

App Reviews Need Better Functionality

You know I love my apps. They are so pretty and I love the developers that make them. But what I hate is in-app review notifications. It’s like an invasion of my privacy or something. I’d rather donate some money to the developer in-app than see a notification that forces me to leave the app to review it.

I keep my phone on Do Not Disturb all day long now and only accept calls from 4 people so any type of intrusion is met with ample hostility. This has drastically eliminated so much distraction but every now and again an app I’ve had for years gets an update and all of a sudden it’s time to ask me to review it.

I even hate reviewing people on eBay. But what’s so sad is that I wait and hope people will review me when I sell them something special and include some extra stuff in the package. And when I get that review I’m super happy for some reason. The same way a person on Instagram feels when some random person they never met likes their picture.

It’s selfish to expect someone to review you if you had an app and you not review them. But you know what else, Apple needs to fix this. Why not have a way to review right from the pop up. Add some stars to it, a little section to type something quick and get back to the app. Have a notification message in the Notification Center if you aren’t up for responding right away. And if that fails, have a review section in the App Store app that you can tap into when you’re bored and want to review your apps. Make it iMessage style so it has an easy familiar layout too.

Once something like that is setup I’ll be way more willing to review my favorite apps.

iPads Need LTE Love

I recently got a hold of the iPad 10.5 inch and went all out with the LTE version this year. I got the Smart Keyboard too and kept my Apple Pencil from my last iPad 9.7 Wifi only version which was recently sold on eBay for about half of what I paid (including the Smart Keyboard). Barely used. Just a side note, iPads, especially iPad Pros, seem to be loosing their value the same way cars do when you take them off the lot. Super fast, I only had that iPad for a year and its value dropped by half. Doesn’t happen that fast with iPhones.

But back to the review. For some reason in the past I thought a wifi only iPad was all I needed to get by since I could just tether it to my iPhone when I was out and about. Some major problems with this setup, it really really sucks. I mean tethering is so slow to start up, sometimes it doesn’t even work right away. You have to play this on and off tethering game with the iPhone and when it finally starts working, you gotta check the status on your iPad by opening Safari and doing a test search. This process takes about 2 minutes if you’re experienced.

It’s embarrassing and Apple knows good and well they can fix this. An iPad or Mac should automatically be connected to your iPhone at all times. Never should any of my Apple devices yearn for internet when I have this one thousand dollar phone sitting right next to it with unlimited LTE.

Other issues with this set up is the battery life. My iPhone loses hella battery life tethering and I have an iPhone 7 Plus. That’s bad for business. The next thing is just the thought of having to carry around something so big that relies on something else to connect to the world. It’s very similar to a laptop. A reason I started leaving my MacBook at home. Lugging around something like that should only be done if you’re doing some type of content creation or developing on an app that the iPad hasn’t ported over yet.

We are in the age of connection, if it doesn’t connect, it becomes obsolete. Now that I have this LTE version it’s like magic. I open my iPad and start working. No more asking the barista “Hey, what’s the password to your slow wifi that Joe Schmoe over there is hogging up downloading reruns of Game of Thrones and Lost”. I just pay for my expensive sparkling water which is double the normal price I get from Whole Foods, find a seat far, far away from nosey people, do a flip-a-roo with the Smart Keyboard and BAM!, I’m to work. No fumbling with my iPhone.

It’s such a classy experience I catch MacBook users doing double takes from time to time. Like they know my iPad is LTE because it just starts working. I get into my zone right away. I can fill out forms I get on Notability with my Apple Pencil, I knock out paragraphs on Ulysses and clear out emails like a boss. My time is very short in cafes now. As soon as I get the work I needed completed, I close my iPad, recycle my bottle of sparkling water, use the bathroom and go about my day.

When I’m at work, its way better now too. I have to sometimes write out things in Notability to send off to different people and I need quick access to do this. Before I would have to play the connecting game, while patients would be talking to me. It was super frustrating, I’m trying to do 10 things at once while waiting for my iPad to connect. Now I just flop it open, write something and send it off without a hitch.

It’s the way computing should be. At first, I didn’t understand it, but now I completely do. The LTE version has made me a believer. I don’t do super crazy programming, designing in Xcode, Adobe or anything but pretty soon the iPad will be just as capable if the apps aren’t available already. Mac’s are becoming trucks, just like Steve Jobs said. They serve a purpose but not everyone needs one.

This movement towards iPads is starting to gain momentum. Many people are switching to iPads for everything. No more is the notion that its just a consumption device. People are running businesses from their iPads and becoming more mobile than before.

Apple releases iOS 11 in 2-3 weeks. This release changes the whole iPad setup with better multitasking, drag and drop, a better file system and more. I’ve dabbled with the beta version on my last iPad but currently I’m sticking with the stock iOS until the full version is released. iOS 10 works really well as it is and I don’t really miss anything on iOS 11 that I can’t wait for.

LTE is the biggest thing I’m happy about on this iPad. The bigger screen, faster refresh rate and thinner bezels are nice, but my previous iPad was good enough in that regard. It lacked LTE and it’s why it sat in a drawer for most of its life with me. Do yourself a favor if you’re considering an iPad Pro, get the LTE version. You won’t regret it.