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Apple's latest iPhones disappoint

iPhone 11 This is a two part series about Apple's latest press conference

Before watching the Apple 2019 conference, Sept. 10, I had my expectations in check. Most of the rumors turned out to be true, but I was still underwhelmed about what Apple has to offer.

The iPhone 11 looks almost identical to the iPhone XR but with minor upgrades (if you even call them that) such as a very awkward-looking camera bump with a 12MP wide lens and a 12MP ultra-wide lens for photography enthusiasts. Night mode for low light, allows for richer and brighter photos which has been an issue on previous phones. Apple upgraded the portrait mode introduced on the XS with the feature now including pets.

Video can now be shot at 4K 60 fps on both lenses and the phone also makes the editing interface more intuitive. There’s also next generation high-dynamic range which emphasizes people more than other things, creating better focal points.

Apple consistently steals from other companies, and QuickTake is similar to Snapchat in the way you can hold the shutter button to start recording.  Apple created a new phenomenon in their creation of the “slofie,” which allows the user to record a selfie in landscape mode but in slow motion. A demonstration on Apple’s official site shows a woman standing in a wintery setting with a car drifting slowly behind her.

The body of the iPhone 11 also received some structural upgrades, such as stronger glass on both sides of the phone which doubles the water resistance. The 11 still boasts the same display capabilities as the XR with a liquid retina LCD with true tone balance which matches the white balance with the temperature of the surrounding light.

Also featured is raise and tap to wake and haptic touch, which now it seems likely to replace 3D touch completely for Apple headsets.  It does not seem like an upgrade to Apple’s flagship phone.

Battery and charging capabilities on the phone received a significant upgrade, boasting all day battery life, and Apple has finally caught up with other manufacturers and included a fast charger right out of the box.

Both this handset and the pro model have what Apple claim is “the fastest chip ever in a smartphone,” which is the A13 chip according to Apple’s official site and the demonstrations blow me away with substantial upgrades in AI, gaming, and overall efficiency.

In response to security concerns from consumers, Apple boasts, “The most secure facial authentication in a smartphone.” Apple also claims they will not store or share your face ID photo. iMessage and FaceTime data is also to be encrypted, according to the manufacturer. Maps is also not allowed to share user’s locations.

The 11 pro is extremely similar to the 11, with a few exceptions, the most notable being adding a telephoto lens. The display is an upgrade from the XS with a 5.8-inch OLED display. Even though the screen is smaller than the 11’s 6.1-inch display, users will receive better visuals. Water resistance is upgraded from 2 meters to 4 meters. The body is mostly the same as the 11, but with a matte finish on the back in surgical grade stainless steel.

The storage options included 64 GB, 256 GB, and 512 GB rather than the 11’s options with 64, 128, and 256 GB. The color options on the pro model are slimmer than the flagship’s, with midnight green, silver, space gray and gold (Apple ditched the rose in the name). Rather, the 11 has the options of purple, yellow, green, black, white and Product Red.

The price of the Pro is similar to the XS with a price of $999, compared to the 11’s $699. These upgrades do not seem substantial enough to upgrade from last year’s models — or the year before. They are also not worth the extra cash unless you use an iPhone for most of your work and photography.

The 11 max is an even harder buy, with a price of $1,099 for a 6.5-inch display and a larger battery life.

Category: Opinion