Apple and the disappointing new iPhones and Watch and Pay

IMG_2291

 

So Apple on the 9th September did the big reveal (well I say big reveal but more later) and I am writing this on the 14th September. Why the delay? Most bloggers and tech sites have already swamped your eyeballs with enough information to sway your opinions and impress your mates with an abundance of information relating to iPhone(s) 6 & 6 Plus, Apple Watch and Apple Pay but here I am only just about to start my write up.

Why? well Apple often is accused of having a distortion field around its products and to this I have regularly scoffed at these nay sayers and doubters, but this year from the off I was left frustrated and disappointed from the moment I tried to watch the stream on my Apple TV. To put this into context, I regularly watch the Apple events in gleeful excitement of delights to come and as I thought, as I raced home to be back in time for the 6pm (UK time) September 9th event which would not fail me either.

Failure to launch

But how wrong was I?, gone was the smooth start and professional polish of the event, I was faced with network issues and then when the picture did work  I was listening to both Tim Cook and what was quite possibly a lady speaking Cantonese over what Tim was saying. I logged out and back in, same thing, turned to the iPad and the stream and that would not work either. Seriously, what the flip was going on? Twitter was turned to as Twitter is always turned to in times of crisis and yes indeed the world too was melting down at the lack of usual Apple sheen and polish.

Patience of a saint was needed

30 minutes – NO: 40 minutes – NO: 45 minutes – NO: and then at 50 minutes the stream finally returned and wait, what! I had missed the entire iPhone launch and was now being treated to Apple Pay. But lets concentrate on the new iPhones first. As we had seen and heard for months we finally saw (officially) the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus

Apple_-_iPhone_6

But here is the thing, there is a fine line between whetting an audience’s appetite with leaks of tidbits of information and what now appears to be purposely or blatantly piss poor management in allowing the audience to be so full of information before the event that at the time of the event they become merely bored at yet another rectangle of glass and metal is presented as if its the saviour of mankind.

Long for the days of accidentally left behind phones in bars

This year was by far the worst year we have had for leaks and by leaks Apple is in full flow of flood damage as we knew size and that there were would be two varieties of size too. As the launch date neared we heard even more about the NFC chip but granted the rumour of the sapphire glass screen was a total dud. The thing is a leak was not even required to guess that this year we would get the A8 chip. Hell, in our podcasts we even talked months ago what Metal would be like with the A8 powering it.

Distortion field down

Apple_-_iPhone_6 2

So what did we actually get, yes bigger screens at 4.7″ and 5.5″ for the 6 and 6 Plus respectively. Sharper screens too and now Retina HD but if the human eye cannot perceive more than what Apple claimed when it brought out the retina screens a few years back, what is the point of Retina HD apart from shutting Samsung and their faboys up. For the record I have over the past few years thought that Samsung have had beautiful screens so I am intrigued to see what Apple can do here. It also begs the question of do we now expect the next iPad and Mac lines to come with a higher price as we are led to believe that we need to update to these screens that rival the miracles of the universe.

The camera got a boost yet is no more than the 5s and the slow mo feature is now double that from the 5s too.  So you get the point straight away that Apple did not have a revolutionary device again this year but another evolutionary step. Apple too seems to be having trouble too in describing the phone as its succinctly described as being:

  • Bigger than bigger ( what the hell does this mean apart from marketing bollocks?)
  • At its largest and thinest
  • A better display
  • Hugely powerful. Enormously efficient
  • The camera is shit hot. Ok so it does not say this but instead the more palatable “The camera that changed photos now does the same for video”
  • Faster speeds. Yawn, heard it al before.
  • Security. Right at your fingertip. Er haven’t we been here before like 12 months ago.
  • Your wallet without the wallet. Unless of course you live outside of the USA. More later
  • IOS8

That’s it! That’s the whole fucking 9 yards. I raced home for this shit expecting the next big thing. THE phone to have and the one to be proud to own. What did we get apart from a bigger, yet thinner slab? Not much really and as Android fans have been eager and justified to point out they have welcomed Apple to 2012. Yes Apple you got told over this and deservedly so too. Apple you used to innovate but here it just seems like this year you actually are playing catchup.

What also makes no bloody sense is in Apple and design we have trusted and when they moved away from the curves of the iPhone 3Gs to the more blocky 4, 5, 5s and 5c (less so) we thought they must know what they are doing, curved lines were wrong on a phone and Jony Ive must know what he is doing. But now we get bloody curves back, so were the blocky lines wrong or are we now to assume that the lines of a phone are now slaves to fashion and whatever has the eye of Mr Ive?

At this rate get ready for the introduction of a skeuomorphic iOS in around 3 years. Still what goes around comes around I suppose.

Apple Pay – No way outside of the USA

And so we come to Apple Pay where a confused world watched as Apple went on to showcase the “revolutionary” wallet that is secured that you don’t need to carry a card around. Ok, the tech behind it is very very clever, the number crunching and generating that totally protects your bank details (well until the next hack) but this came at the time of iclouds largest ever security breach so timing was piss poor, yet not Apple faults that rudie nudie pics of the stupid famous people were leaked online.

But the rest of the world laughed as unlike the USA we have had chip and pin for years and the days of signing for your purchase and having to show ID are long behind us, so what Apple was showing us was not really all that new for us here in the UK (or quite a large proportion of the world)

USA launch and the rest of the world to follow

Sadly Apple we have heard this before and I genuinely don’t believe you that Apple Pay will make it to the rest of the world. If iTunes Radio cannot make it to the UK or Europe almost 2 years after you announced it then I am sorry it’s another part that has broken your distortion field. Ok so Apple is an American company and plays heavily on that feature but if sales were just limited to the USA it would not be the multi billion $ company that it is today . Global companies need to address this very quickly that if you operate at a global level then you have to treat everyone as the same consumer and not leave some of them feeling like second class citizens.  We are  expected to pay the same for a phone or device that does less than our American counterparts. Fairness or more likely  bullshit says I.

One more thing

Oh how we laughed at Tim for bringing us in on the in joke and how quickly did we wish that Steve Jobs was there to kick people up the arse/ass as Apple were not shining in this special event so far.

The big reveal…Oh its a watch and will it be better looking than the Moto 360? Expectedly we were treated to this gorgeous and well designed video:

http://www.apple.com/watch/films/#film-design

The video looked better than the watch

What the hell? its a piss poor rectangular thing that I have slated Samsung for with their bloody awful gear designs. Ooooh its got a crown but its all very well moving a crown on a watch when its not on your wrist but NO ONE has ever tried and succeeded in winding a watch up or changing the time/date when its on your wrist and none of the examples showed it being used on a wrist.

Did I mention they failed to talk about the battery life? No and neither did Apple until around 48 hours later when they announced almost apologetically that the battery may last a day but has to be charged overnight: SHIT SHIT SHIT SHIT SHIT not impressed, disappointed by the design and when you are more impressed by the watch straps then you know a product has a problem. Still this is the first attempt and as we all know Apple is not the best at launching the product that demands to be bought. Apple Watch II may be more interesting. Think I am being too harsh then check out this video from CNET on the Top 5 reasons not to buy an Apple watch.

However, I do like the fact that the Apple Watch can be used with Apple pay except I live in the UK so I can’t but its something I like the idea of.

The iPod was a disruptive device that sadly the Apple Watch is not

What stunned me more about the Apple Watch was the quite simply failed opportunity that the threw away. Lets be clear, the iPod made Apple a big bag of cash that saved them from a whole world of hurt. The iPod was available to all and this was the genius about it. Got a mac?  it will work with that. Got a PC? it will work with that. Simply put the iPod was shit hot at dominating the market as it worked across all platforms. It’s sad then that at the time of the Apple event the iPod was put to rest and instead the Apple Watch was launched that is locked and needing an iPhone to actually work properly. If I was a an Apple shareholder I would be pissed off as this is a lost market and hinders the wider adoption of Apple Pay.

It’s amazing that in the ten years that Apple launched the iPod that worked across so many platforms and disrupted the entire music and video industry that Apple have sensationally dropped the ball when they could have disputed the financial industry and once again made another big bag of cash.

 Disappointing end of term report

Well you might have guessed that I am fed up and disappointed with Apple that this year at the “Special Event” they failed to deliver and the gremlins that affected the stream have got in and buggered up the people at Apple that are innovative and disruptive designers. They have delivered what was expected and no real OMG moments and maybe that’s what people want as at the time of writing this the iPhone 6 has broken records with 4 million pre-ordered on the first day.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/09/15/us-apple-iphone-idUSKBN0HA1A220140915

Was I going to be stupid enough and jump in and join the bandwagon and pre-order on the first day. Of course bloody not I’m not freaking mental! I waited and ordered the silver 64gb iPhone 6 on the following Sunday. Yes I may be pissed off but Apple is more than one event and Ive got a mac and an iPad and with the launch of Yosemite later this year moving to any other phone than an iPhone would be ridiculous and that’s why Apple is successful they make products that work and make your life easier.

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