Thursday Morning News

black_volt_nike_sport_largeIf yesterday was all about the iPhone and iOS 10, then today is about the Apple Watch Series 2 and watchOS 3. John Gruber’s review of both the hardware and software starts off with the shortcomings of both, then goes on to count the ways they’re either completely eliminated or almost entirely mitigated thanks to new hardware and software. Apple knows what people do with their Apple Watch, and they’ve made sure that both are front in centre in both releases.

The Verge says in their review that the Apple Watch Series 2 is a serious fitness tracker. By adding waterproofing and GPS to the Series 2, Apple has doubled down on the activity tracking features, which turned out to be what a lot of people were using the Apple Watch for anyway, in addition to the app integrations that make tracking every workout easy.

A standalone review of watchOS 3 sweats the small changes, the tiny details that add up to a better user experience. At this point, it’s pretty fair to say that watchOS feels pretty complete; there’s really only a handful of features that I’d like that aren’t in the release, starting with completely custom watch faces and always-on watch faces.

WatchOS 3 brings about some bigger changes too, especially to launching apps and making sure the stuff you see on your wrist is as up to date as it can be, both of which were somewhat contentious issues in previous versions. The existing watch faces have been updated with some new customisations — some watch faces get complications where they had none — and there’s a few new watch faces. The talking Minnie Mouse watch face is also pretty cute.

Wired tells us about the ceramic material that’s used in the most expensive model. While it’s not $20,000 of bling on your wrist, the shiny white material certainly looks expensive, as well as proving durable in ways that metals like aluminium aren’t. Ceramic could very well find its way into the next iPhone, provided Apple can prove that it won’t crack under the everyday stresses placed on your phone.

A review of the new iPhones from Ars Technica says it’s impossible to ignore the transitionary pain that losing the headphone jack will bring. It’s also hard to ignore Apple’s best efforts in this space — after all, they are including a headphone jack adapter in every box and selling them for $12 a pop. But for all its advantages, you’ve got to really believe in a wireless future — or have already adopted one, at least partially — to be completely satisfied with the new iPhone.

The notorious Anthony Agius has published his annual analysis of the cheapest iPhone 7 and plan combos, in which you will find out the cheapest total cost of ownership for the new iPhones. If you want to get a new iPhone every year, then his breakdown of the cheapest way to get an iPhone 7 Plus 32GB will be a good starting point.

There’s enough new features in iOS 10 that you’d be completely forgiven if you stumble across a new feature in a few weeks time. But in case you want a little refresher, MacRumors runs though a few lesser-known features like incoming voicemail transcription. Speaking of which, has anyone tried that out in Australia?

Appearing on Good Morning America, Apple CEO Tim Cook shared comments about augmented reality, as well as the removal of the headphone jack in the iPhone 7 and how AirPods manage to stay in your ears.

Apple’s latest iPhone 7 ad is very abstract. It shows off the new features of the iPhone, without showing them off.

Notable Replies

  1. Erwin says:

    Lol - gangsta decryption! Sounds like a rapper.

  2. Scar68 says:

    REALLY enjoy your wrap ups Benny. Excellent writing with a great sense of style. You work is great appreciated :slight_smile:

  3. What I used to do when I did plans was to ask that ALL handset payments were put onto the first bill. Something they were always happy to do. In Anthony's Telstra example that would be $21x24 months = $504. The idea being that in the month before the bill comes in you sell off the old iPhone which should give you enough cash to cover that bill... then you're only left with the ongoing monthly costs. The theory here is that you could get a new phone every year essentially for FREE (since selling the old one covered the cost of the new one) and all you'd be paying is the plan cost...

    When it came to it a year later though, they never let me upgrade for free, there was always a cancellation fee on the basis that you were getting a subsidy on last years handset by being on a contract and by upgrading you were effectively giving up that subsidy (since you would then get a new one on the new phone!). How the hell are you talking them into letting you upgrade for free every year? That's bloody awesome and a track I'd like to get onto.

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