"It's truly the best iPhone we've ever made".
-Apple, at every iPhone announcement.
You can say what you want about Apple, but they’re fucking masters of talking. They could talk up a pile of dog shit while you’re drooling over it and contemplating criminal activity to get one on launch day. I was a slave to this, somehow winding up with every single iPhone by 11am on the day of its release. Maybe it’s because I’m a little older, a bit wiser, a dad or just “over it”, but this past Friday ended without the iPhone 7 in my house.
There have been times when the new iPhone actually was an improvement. The 5S had the Touch-ID, which is a major step while the 6 finally grew to be in line with the rest of the phones of this era. But some launches find you sitting at your desk by 1pm with an iPhone 6 in one hand and a 6S in the other, asking yourself why the sweet fuck you bothered walking into an AT&T store on your lunch break, let alone spending real money for this. Not that this happened to me…
This year, my iPhone escapades were much simpler. On Tuesday afternoon I started testing a new Android device; the Honor 8 by Huawei. By Wednesday morning I was desperate for an iOS device like a smack head itching for some of the devil’s nose candy. While I hadn’t seen the iPhone 7 in person, I already made some strong assumptions about it.
- No headphone jack.I’ll go into a bit more detail soon, but the bottom line is I’m not ready to give it up. I like headphones. I like plugging them in. I like having a hole to plug them into. I need my hole.
- Better camera.I don’t care. I couldn’t take a decent picture to save my life; it doesn’t matter what camera you give me. Every year they put the best camera in the iPhone. The 6S was the best. The 7 is now the best. I’m sure the next iPhone will also have the best camera.
- Faster CPU and more RAM.This doesn’t mean anything; we’re talking about a damn phone, folks.
- Home button.Early impressions from various reviewers, even those who are die-hard Apple fans, were that the new home button feels like shit.
The two biggest issues: dead Home button and no sound hole
On Friday, a co-worker of mine and I popped in a nearby Apple location to check out the goods. We both picked up the 7, tried out the home button and gave each other the same disturbing look. This was terrible. No, really. The new home button feels like what I can only imagine is the sensation you get when trying to ring a doorbell made of mud through a sticky bowl of Jell-O.
This is especially disappointing when you’ve experienced the newer Mac trackpads. They actually trick your brain into thinking you’re pressing in on a physical button, even though it’s a stationary piece. It definitely elicits a “holy shit” the first time you use one. The iPhone 7 is not that. It’s more of the Jell-O and mud thing I mentioned previously. My concern now is if all the home buttons will eventually be like this, what do I do in the future? But that’s more of a first-world/ one percent type of issue.
Next up, let’s talk about why Apple removed my audio hole. I know, I know… they said “courage”. I watched that keynote twice now. It’s pretty clear even Apple has no idea what the fuck Phil is saying anymore. But here’s the problem I have with this whole thing:
Apple: Our vision for audio has always been to use our Lightning cable.
Me: Don't remember that but okay.
Apple: Here are Lightning headphones and an adapter for old headphones.
Apple: Our vision for audio on the iPhone is wireless.
Me: Wait… you just said it was Lightning which is a wired connection.
Apple: Bluetooth is a terrible audio experience.
Me: I agree. That’s why I use wired headphones.
Apple: We made something better than Bluetooth that fixes all of the Bluetooth issues.
Me: Wow what is it?
Apple: Here are the new Bluetooth headphones with a custom chip.
Apple: They get five hours of charge.
Me: My wired headphones that plug into the headphone jack have an unlimited number of hours on a charge.
Apple: We made this and took out the headphone jack because everything should be wireless.
Me: Then why are you giving me wired shit in the box with my $1000 phone?
Apple: These wireless headphones are a great feature of the new iPhone. They also work with every iPhone, iPod, iPad and Mac.
Me: Wait, this is a totally different product. Who the fuck told you it’s a feature of the new iPhone if I can use it with everything and it’s sold separately?
Anyway, you get the picture. It’s just like the MacBook with a single USB type-c connection.
Apple: We believe the future of the notebook is wireless, which is why there’s only one port on these new Macs.
Me: Okay, but I still need to plug stuff in like hard drives, a mouse, monitors, etc.
Apple: Oh we know. If you give us an extra $80 we’ll sell you back your holes, goober.
The bottom line is that if Apple wants to move forward with something, just go for it. The people bitching on the internet about not having a headphone jack are going to do it no matter what, so who are you hanging back for? If you think the future is wireless headphones, then show me. Put them in the box. Don’t make it an upsell. Prove me wrong. Likewise with the Mac- if you believe my Mac only needs one port then show me how to use it like that and don’t offer to sell me the ports after the fact because you know you’re full of shit.
Maybe we need to get used to the new, three-year cycle now. Maybe they’re literally out of ideas to build into these phones. The bottom line is there is really no reason for this phone to exist other than the fact that it’s September and Apple needs to make grown men take the day off of work to stand in a mall.