iPhone 11, 11 Pro and 11 Pro Max

Another September and another slew of iPhones were announced. For the second year in a row, Apple graced us with three new iPhones. Rumored for months, the new names of the iPhones are the iPhone 11, the iPhone 11 Pro and the iPhone 11 Pro Max.

Courtesy of Apple.com

iPhone 11

Last year’s iPhone XR was a hit amongst consumers. The naming scheme made it seem like an afterthought though. Last year, we also had the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max as the “premium” models. With the iPhone XR thrown in there, at a lower-cost, this was automatically seen as a budget iPhone. When in reality, it was a top-notch device.

This year’s naming line-up gives more credit to the “lower-cost” iPhone, the iPhone 11. With a new name, the iPhone 11 just seems like part of the family as it deserves.

The iPhone 11 is the upgrade from the iPhone XR. It has the same 6.1-inch LCD screen. So what’s new with the iPhone 11? A lot.

Per usual, the iPhone 11 gets the new A13 Bionic processor making it one of the fastest smartphones on the market. Also, it gets a second camera. Last year’s XR only had one camera, which was kind of a disappointment. The second camera on the iPhone 11 is an ultra-wide lens that allows you to fit more into the frame when taking the picture. To put it simply, you aren’t going to take a bad picture. Pretty much taken from the Google Pixel, the iPhone 11 gets Night Shot. This allows you to get those shots where there is little light. The difference that was shown off was amazing. Take a look below:

Courtesy of Apple.com
Courtesy of Apple.com

Another upgrade in the camera department is that you can finally take portrait photos of your pets with the iPhone 11. This was a lacking feature in last year’s XR. I am not sure if this is something people are into, but now you can take slow-motion video on the front camera…or as Apple called it…”Slow-fies”.

According to Apple, the iPhone 11 will get 17-hours of video playback on its battery. This is one hour longer than last year’s model Surprisingly though, it no longer has the best battery in an iPhone. We will talk about that later on.

The iPhone 11 has a water resistance of up to 2 meters for 30 minutes.

The price of the iPhone 11 is the biggest selling-point, in my opinion. Yes, it has lower quality components and materials than the other models discussed later, but starting at $699 is amazing in a world of $1,000 smartphones.

Here are your pricing and storage options:

64 GB – $699

128 GB – $749

256 GB – $849

Along with those storage options, the new colors are white, black, green, yellow, purple and red.

Courtesy of Apple.com

The iPhone 11 will be available for pre-order at 5am PDT or 8am EST on Friday, September 9/13 with a release date of September 20th.

iPhone 11 Pro

As with last year’s iPhone XS, the iPhone Pro is the new premium iPhone. For simple clarification, the iPhone 11 Pro is the direct upgrade from the iPhone XS. Along with the 5.8-inch sized iPhone 11 Pro, Apple also made sure big-phone lovers were served. Similar to the XS Max from 2018, the iPhone 11 Pro Max is now the big 6.5-inch iPhone.

Courtesy of Apple.com

Like the iPhone 11, the Pro gets the A13 Bionic chip, Night Shot camera feature but also has a lot different with it.

Let’s take a look at the camera first. This is the first iPhone with a third camera on the back. What does this third camera get you? It adds that ultra-wide viewing angle that the iPhone 11 gave us but also keep the telephoto lens so that you can zoom in 2x.

With up to five-more hours than the XS Max, you get the longest-lasting iPhone battery available, with the iPhone 11 Pro Max. The smaller 11 Pro also gets a nice battery upgrade gaining four-more hours than last year’s XS.

Another difference in the Pro models is that they get better water resistance with being protected up to 4 meters for 30 minutes. Also, for the first time, Apple is supplying an 18-watt charging brick in the box. Finally, we are getting a faster charger right out the gate. For the price, it is about time.

Here are your pricing and storage options for the 11 Pro/Pro Max:

64 GB – $999/$1099

256 GB – $1149/1249

512 GB – $1349/1449

With new models, come new colors. There are now four colors: midnight green, silver, space gray and gold Along with new colors, the back of the 11 Pros will be a matte-glass material.

The iPhone 11 Pro and Pro Max will be available for pre-order at 5am PDT or 8am EST on Friday, September 9/13 with a release date of September 20th.

I will follow this up with my thoughts after I let this sink in a little. But for now, here is all the basic information you need for today’s iPhone announcement.

Are you planning on getting any of the new iPhones? Let me know on twitter and Instagram!

Do You Need the New iPhone?

In less than 24 hours, Apple will be announcing their new lineup of iPhones. Every year, without a doubt, I plan on getting Apple’s latest and greatest. This year? Not so much.

Over the last two years, I really started wondering if I needed to upgrade each time Apple released something new. I don’t have that problem with my iPad. I am still using my 2014 iPad Air 2. It still gets the job done.

When I upgraded from my iPhone 7 Plus to the iPhone X, it was a huge upgrade. And I loved it. Do I regret it? No, I really don’t. But that was the year that got me thinking, “What more does the new iPhone get me”? 2018 comes around and the XS came out. Guess what? I upgraded again. So I have spent the last 10 months or so really contemplating whether or not I need to upgrade in 2019.

I have a buddy that has been using an iPhone 6 as his daily phone and he said he is going to run it until it dies. I just wish I could have that outlook on technology. I have been using an iPhone SE over the last two and a half years for my work device and it does dang-near everything I need it to do. Does it have the greatest camera? No. Is it as snappy as my iPhone XS? Sure isn’t. But I can do just about every task with that as I can with my phone that is almost four times the cost. With a baby coming shortly, I want my wife and I to have great phones for photo-taking purposes. Looking at the pictures my iPhone XS takes, there is really no reason to upgrade. The camera is fantastic.

This is also a money thing. Some people, like myself, can use the excuse that they are on the iPhone Upgrade Program. This is where you can upgrade your iPhone every year for pretty much the same monthly cost. Fantastic deal, right? It really is. Especially for those who upgrade every year, anyway. But what if we held onto that phone one extra year? After that, the phone is paid off and you have some equity in it. At that point, when the next round of iPhones come through, you can trade-in your phone and get some money off that brand-spankin’ new device.

Maybe upgrading our phones less is better for the environment? I am not smart enough to talk about the impacts smartphones have on the environment, so I won’t even try. But it is something to think about.

But this is also my thing. Tech has always been a very expensive hobby. Some people are into clothes, some people spend their money going to concerts, and some spend crazy amounts traveling. However you spend your money is up to you, but technology is my thing. Although, just because you have the money to spend, does that mean you should? That is a decision we all have to make ourselves.

I’m not saying that I won’t upgrade my iPhone this fall, but as of right now, that is the plan. I would love to have a paid-off phone going into next years 2020 iPhone.

Are you upgrading your phone this year? What device are you upgrading from? Let me know on twitter and Instagram!

mophie Juice Pack for the iPhone X – Review

I have been expecting this case for well over nine months now and finally, it has arrived.

In the past, mophie has released their Juice Pack battery case for new iPhones within three months or so of the newest iPhone’s launch. The iPhone X Juice Pack launch went a little different.

A year later, it is finally available. You may see posts that say that mophie released a product that is already discontinued, and yes, while this is true, this battery case will also fit your new iPhone Xs. So it’s not for nothing. Let’s check this thing out.

Size

I will come right out and say it, this is the best size battery case that I have used on the iPhone X/Xs. It is slimmer than any I have used before and fits in the hand perfectly. I can’t promise that it is the slimmest case on the market but compared to those that I have used, it is a welcoming size in the battery case world.

Performance

This case has a 1,720 mAh battery capacity. What that means is that it should charge your iPhone X around 63% and your iPhone Xs – 64%. Of course, this is in a perfect world. After doing that math, I really thought I would get at least 60% extra battery by charging from 20% to 80%. I did my test and in just over in an hour, with my phone connected to wifi and not being used during that time, my phone charged from 24% to 64%. 40% is all that I got out of this case. Frustrated, I completed another test. This time I got from 20% to 64%. So it wasn’t a fluke.

Compared to other cases on the market, a mere 40% is ridiculous. Unless my case is a dud, I can confidently say you will only get 40% extra charge with this case.

Charging

The Juice Pack can charge two ways, through QI wireless charging and Micro-USB. Yes, unfortunately, Micro-USB is still a thing. I thought by this time, mophie would have switched all of their cases to USB-C. I am thankful that you can charge this case wirelessly as that is how I primarily charge my iPhone these days.

The other thing to think about is if you use Apple CarPlay. Since you can’t use Apple’s lightning cable with this case, you have to rely on a Micro-USB cable in the car. Fortunately, CarPlay does work when the case is on your phone. This is a big win because the only other Apple certified battery case, from Moment, does not work with CarPlay.

Price

The mophie Juice Pack for the iPhone X is $99.99.  The case comes in black and blue.

Like Apple products, mophie is a premium brand with premium prices. I am not saying they are perfect but I have never had any quality issues with mophie in the past. They are a brand that you can trust.  How you spend your money is up to you, all I can tell you is that this case works as advertised. Is the $100 price tag a bit much? In my opinion, yes. But this has been mophie’s going price for these devices for as long as I have known about them.

Let me know if you plan on picking up this mophie Juice Pack or already have a favorite battery case!

Follow me on Instagram and twitter!

Disclosure: Some links in this post are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will make a commission if you decide to purchase after clicking the link.

 

Apple Watch Series 4 Review- The 4 S’s

Size. Style. Speed. Safety.

These are the four S’s that I think the newest Apple Watch shows off the best. I have been using the Series 4 Apple Watch for two weeks now and it is a great improvement over my two-year-old Series 2 watch. Let’s take some time, and check this guy out!

Size

New to the Series 4 Apple Watch are two new sizes. Upgraded from previous years 38mm and 42 mm, we now have 40mm and 44mm options. When Apple announced this on-stage, I was terrified that previous Apple Watch bands wouldn’t work on the new sizes. Surprisingly, all of the 38mm bands will work with the 40mm watch and likewise if you are going from a 42mm to the 44mm. This is awesome for all previous Apple Watch owners. I don’t know how long Apple will keep this trend going but for now, I am happy about it.

img_3283

If you are used to the 38mm and 40mm, going up to the respective 40mm and 44mm sizes will not be an issue. Coming from the 42mm and going to the 44mm I was thinking it may be too big. It is not. I notice no size difference on my wrist. If people have thought the older 42mm has been too big and 38mm has been too small, this might be the year you downgrade to a 40mm and get a smaller watch. The only downside to that is that you will have to buy brand new bands if you’re making that size change. The best thing I can tell you to do is to go to a local retailer and check them out for yourself. I can confidently say that going from either the smaller or larger version from a previous model to the newer respective sizes, is a safe bet.

Style

I love the look of this watch. Unless you have been used to looking at an Apple Watch every day, most people will not notice a difference and assume it is just another Apple Watch. And that is fine. But to me, this thing looks brand new.

The edges of the screen are now curved into the body of the watch and also has a bigger overall screen size. Instead of the square outline that you may have noticed on older Apple Watches, the edges of the display just flow like a waterfall right into the aluminum body and eliminating a huge portion of the black bezels.

Since the screen is bigger, you can fit more onto the larger footprint. On the new Infograph watch face, you can have up to nine complications. Previously, you could only have six complications, at the most.  While this is a welcoming feature, this is the only watch face that uses more complications. I was really hoping for more watch faces would take advantage of the larger screen. Yes, it is bigger, but now it just looks like a blown-up version of the previous Apple Watches I have owned. If you are hard of seeing, the bigger text on the screen is awesome but doesn’t add much more information.

Again, if you are relatively familiar with previous Apple Watches, you will notice that this device is significantly thinner. What boggles my mind is that it is still thicker than the original Apple Watch. But overall, this is the greatest looking Apple Watch so far, in my opinion.

Speed

Apple said that the new Series 4 S4 chip is 2x as fast as last year’s S3 chip. And boy, can you feel it! Granted, I am coming from a two-year-old watch so I knew the speed improvements would be wild. But it is so much nicer to have a watch that is immediately responsive when you want it to do something. When starting a workout, my Series 2 would take 30 seconds to a minute to start the three-second countdown. Now, it is instant. I forgot what new felt like, and this is it.

Safety

This is the most important part of my review, safety. Since the Apple Watch has been released, there have been numerous reports of the Apple Watch “saving peoples lives“. Of course, the doctors are the ones doing the life saving but the Apple Watch has become a great tool in alerting people of high heart rates when they are supposedly being inactive. Also, as an exercise tool, the Apple Watch has helped tons of people lose weight just by helping them be mindful of their activity habits. Go check out tech journalist, Jim Dalrymple’s weight loss story!

With the Series 4, Apple has stepped up their game. The Series 4 has an updated second-generation heart rate sensor to more closely monitor that ticker of yours. Later this year, Apple will be releasing an app that will let you take an electrocardiogram aka EKG or ECG. This is not to replace doctors or even a trip to the office but it is to help you stay more informed about your body and your life. I think it is about time that we can start to have these types of tests at our fingertips or our wrists.

Also coming this year, the new Series 4 will be able to detect irregular heart rate. I’m not going to into a medical lesson, because I am nowhere near qualified to speak about this kind of stuff. But I can tell you irregular heart rate is not good and should be checked out if you are diagnosed. To get a jump start and have this detected when previously it could not? Take my money.

The final safety point I want to focus on is fall detection. Yep, this thing can detect when you fall. Turned off by default for those under 65, this feature can truly be a lifesaver to those prone to falling often. If the watch detects a fall and you are unresponsive for at least 60 seconds, your watch will make an emergency call to emergency services and also message your emergency contacts with a message of your current location. Don’t worry,  the watch gives you an option to say that you are OK and will not start calling for an emergency unless you really want it to!

Verdict

Starting at $399, the Apple Watch Series 4 is quite the upgrade for most people. If you have the Series 3 from last year, I think that you could wait another year before upgrading. Apple does offer a cellular version of this watch for an additional cost. The battery life has been great and can easily get through two days.

Just like every year, this is the best Apple Watch, yet. Of course, it is. But seriously, if you have anything other than the Series 3 or just like to have the newest latest and great stuff, you will not be disappointed with the new Apple Watch Series 4.

Follow me on Instagram and twitter and let me know if you are buying the new Apple Watch!

Images are courtesy of Apple.com and The Mealy Apple.

Do I Miss Touch ID?

Screen Shot 2018-06-30 at 10.40.45 AM

Since November, I have been living with the iPhone X. If you haven’t been following along, the iPhone X is the first iPhone without a home button. Since there is no longer a home button, Apple’s fingerprint unlock feature, Touch ID, is also gone.  Because of this, Apple built in facial recognition software to unlock your phone called Face ID.

I wasn’t sure how I was going to like solely relying on Face ID because Touch ID was so fast and accurate.  When I first got the iPhone X I also had the iPhone 8 Plus, which still had Touch ID. Comparing the two, there was an obvious speed and accuracy difference between them. The 8 Plus fingerprint reader was significantly faster and easier to use.

Screen Shot 2017-09-12 at 7.38.17 PM

There are times where Face ID is annoying and I wish I could have Touch ID back. For instance, when your phone is sitting on a desk or flat surface you cannot unlock your phone unless you hover your head over the top of your phone. I know this might sound insignificant, but it is one of those things you don’t realize you’re missing until it is gone.

If you were not aware, there were two versions of Touch ID. The second version was a great improvement and opened your phone almost too quickly. But after you got used to it, it was fantastic to use over the older generation. My iPad Air 2 still has that first generation Touch ID sensor. It is too slow. In this instance, Face ID has the upper hand. And this is really the comparison we should be doing. Two first-generation products. When you put it in that context, I believe Face ID is leap and bounds ahead of the first-generation Touch ID.

In addition to Face ID, losing the home button gave us some truly great gestures and a new way to use an iPhone, that was very much needed.

Screen Shot 2018-06-30 at 10.40.16 AM

To answer my question, yes I do kind of miss Touch ID. But I can only imagine, in two to three years, where Face ID will be. I think we will get to the point where we will look back at Touch ID and laugh.

This fall, from what the rumors are telling us, all the new iPhones may come without a home button. This is the future of the lineup and I look forward to going on this journey with Apple.

Let me know your thoughts on twitter and Instagram!

Thanks for coming by!

All images courtesy of Apple.com