It’s the fall and you know what that means: new iPhones. Now I will admit, I’m a bit of an Apple fanboy. I use a caseless iPhone 11 Pro, watch Netflix on an Apple TV, and I’m typing this right now on a MacBook Pro. It’s not just me, most of my friends are the same (birds of a feather flock together y’know). We all huddled together on a group Zoom call and watched the iPhone event in amazement as Apple showed off their new phones. Towards the closing of the event, it dawned on me, “Why would anyone buy an Android phone now?”
Android vs iPhone is one of the great rivalries of modern history. It’s up there with Lakers vs Celtics, Jay Z vs Nas, and blue and black vs white and gold. The diehards from both sides have waged war on comment sections and group chats for years, but I think as of today it needs to end. Let’s start with Apple's announcement.
Apple chose to overhaul the design of the iPhone this year. Returning to the flat slab sides design of the 4 and 5 series will draw fans as well as detractors. Some people feel very strongly about the rounded sides we enjoyed for the past 6 years. Most won’t care, and if anything it’ll look cool to be able to stand it up vertically on a table. In all honesty, most people will just throw a hunk of plastic on their slab of beautiful navy blue ceramic glass and aerospace aluminum or stainless steel. Speaking of ceramic glass there’s a new screen on the iPhone 12. The new iPhone is also IP68 water and dust resistant, being certified to be water-resistant up to two meters of water for 30 minutes. That means shower selfies are a definite go now.
People have been waiting for years for Apple to unveil an iPhone with sapphire glass. There were issues with suppliers, getting a bright enough screen to have a good user experience, and just generally not being up to Apple’s standards. What we got this year is very interesting, rather than the bog-standard Gorilla Glass every smartphone gets, Apple has what they call a “Ceramic Shield” on the screens of the new iPhone. Tougher than any smartphone screen? 4x better drop performance? Whatever won’t make me regret going caseless. In addition to a more durable screen, the 12 has an overall better-looking screen.
A big reason people chose to upgrade from the XS and 11 Pro the past two years was due to those models having OLED screens. For those that don’t know, OLED differs from the normal LED displays in that the brightness of each pixel is independent of one another and can dim all the way down, shutting off that individual pixel. It’s one of those things you can’t really leave once you experience it, and now that the 12, 12 mini and 12 Pro all have it, the whole line up is strengthened. The iPhone 12 Pro does get brighter and does have a wider color gamut but you most likely won't really notice the difference unless you're peeping pixels.
Cameras are more or less the same from last year. The 12 and 12 Pro have kept their 2 and 3 camera line ups from last year. This means we still get the nice optical zoom and wide-angle lenses from 2019. Selfies still look a little too good and we have high-quality 4K camcorders in our pockets. What they did was put the same camera sensor from the 11 Pro in the 12 and improve the sensor in the 12 Pro. The 12 Pro now has a LiDAR sensor which should enhance night images even more. The night mode in the 11 was immaculate, so I’m looking forward to night pictures on the beach looking like it’s daytime.
The iPhone now has 5G, and no it won’t kill you or give you COVID-19. The A14 processor is the fastest thing in any phone, and according to benchmarks is faster than some desktop processors. And they’re done including headphones and chargers in the box because they’re ummm, saving the environment, I guess. What really elevated Apple’s lineup is its depth. I mean look at this.
All the way down to the $399 price point you can get a modern smartphone with a fast processor and the strongest software suite in the mobile space. An iPhone SE will do everything a 12 Pro does. Sure the screen isn’t as good, the camera isn’t as advanced, and it doesn’t have the bezeless screen, but nevertheless it's a modern iPhone. You’ll still be able to use iMessage, Facetime, and get all of your updates on time.
It’s an unavoidable truth, the Android OS is crippled. There is a major problem with OEMs shipping out phones that will get software updates for 2 years if you’re lucky, some not at all. App developers take extra weeks or months to push out updates for the Android version of their apps. It’s well documented how Snapchat is a much worse experience on Android compared to iPhones. Look, I've been there; OnePluses, Galaxies, Windows Phone, there's no comparison. Save yourself the pain and just get an iPhone, it’s too good of an experience to pass up now. Even if $399 for an SE is too much, the iPhone 7 from 2016 is still getting updates and you can easily find one used for around $200 on eBay. My friend Rob was using one just last week, and it called an Uber just as well as my 11 Pro could.
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