In the middle of Apple’s “Far Out” event, I couldn’t help but think: I’ve heard exactly this idea before — countless times. Executives have been talking about the new iPhone 14 with the same superlatives and no details: it’s faster, brighter, longer lasting, better, you get the point. They were talking about bigger screens like 2014, which is the time Apple first added the “Plus” model to its lineup.
The logo confirmed my suspicion that the company is running out of ideas for sale: the new iPhone 14 logo is “big and bigger” and the 8-year-old iPhone 6? “Greater than greater”.
The rest of the keyword offered a little to excite me. For much of the presentation, Apple was relying on troubling overuse cases, like car crashes and losing connectivity in the wild, and solace like bringing in long-awaited features, including the always-on display, to convince people to buy its latest iPhone. Not surprisingly, these features won’t make it to older models – even the software-based ones that have been available to competitors for ages.
However, the keynote concluded with a line that seemed akin to dystopia to me: “It’s a whole new way to experience the iPhone.” Is it Apple? It’s almost as if the iPhone lives in a vacuum where there are no competitors.
Android phones are hot again
Apple’s increasingly frequent releases are in stark contrast to what’s been going on in the Android camp lately. The end result with the iPhone 13 was also no different: there were hardly any significant upgrades over its predecessors. As someone who switched to the iPhone just two years ago, Android phones are calling me again.
Samsung, after many beta iterations, has managed to build a range of foldable phones that are durable and can fit into almost any other flagship phone in every aspect. More importantly, gambling on foldable screens has allowed Samsung to unlock new ways for us to power our phones, and as it continues to improve technology, it will be hard for others to catch up.
Although Google has yet to reveal its foldable phone it is rumored to have come a long way compared to when it left what it thought was a sinking ship. With Google Tensor’s in-house silicone and bold designs, Google has been a huge success in the field Pixel 6 Phones, especially in the mid-range category, after a long wait, finally seem to have built a realistic iPhone alternative for Android users. Next month, we’ll see if the Pixel 7 can maintain that momentum.
What Google is doing with software is also unprecedented. Not only is the latest version of Android 13 fun to use, but it cleverly takes advantage of a custom Pixel chip to offer a suite of handy tools for excluding elements from your photos, taking long-exposure photos and night shots, and more.
live with Samsung Galaxy Flip 4 And the Pixel 6 has been a refreshing experience over the past weeks and I’m not sure if there’s a convincing case for me to stick with an iPhone anymore. I left Android because, at the time, there were no flagships from Google or Samsung to compete with the iPhone in terms of practicality and innovation, but since then Apple has made little progress to stop me leaving.
Does Apple care about the radical anymore?
But in many ways, this was inevitable and fit the narrative many expected and took a long time to make.
You see, Apple has got the privilege of being boring at this point. It’s so advanced in many aspects like performance that it can sit right now and still progress every year. You’ve reached the iPad level with the iPhone. The iPad dominates the market so decisively that it has no competition. However, Apple updates its product lineup annually without worrying about whether there are any new root reasons for people to care or invest. She knows they will. And that’s where the iPhone is now.
However, Apple shouldn’t take this for granted for long as it did with the MacBook, as it eventually tried to force a bunch of bold ideas at once and it all backfired and the company was forced to back off.
The iPhone 14s and iPhone 14 Pros both look like a great lineup of phones and many new features Apple brings like emergency satellite communications, which will definitely come in handy for people who buy them. But among the four models, I hope Apple has gone the extra mile to sharpen its edge or even address some major complaints like inconsistent Face ID, a proprietary Lightning port, or MagSafe heating issues. The basics like the battery, screens, and performance of the iPhone 13 series were good and shouldn’t be in the spotlight. Unfortunately, there is always iPhone 15 Next year.