Critical Section


ess ee

Monday,  04/04/16  08:05 AM

Reginald ... click to enbiggenYou guys may know, I'm a "small phone" guy.  I loved my Palm Pre, it was the perfect size.  So when Apple went from the iPhone 4 form factor to the iPhone 5, I was not delighted.  I did upgrade, and for the past two years I've liked my iPhone 5S, but there was no way I wanted an iPhone 6.  (And as far as the iPhone 6 Plus, I already have an iPad :)

So the iPhone SE was designed for me; essentially an iPhone 6S in an iPhone 5S body.  I just got one and I like it.

Improvements:

  • The camera.  The picture at right of my cat Reggie is amazing; there was so much variation in light that I had a hard time seeing him by eye, yet the picture is great.  (click to enbiggen, but note that I've downsampled the resolution by 200%)
  • The battery life.  I got my phone on Friday, and powered it on Saturday morning.  I deliberately ran all day Saturday and Sunday without plugging it in, and on Sunday night I was still at 20%.
  • Apple Pay.  I'm all setup with nowhere to go; all the places I went over the weekend didn't accept it.  (The blank look on the DoIt Center cashier's face when I asked if they accepted Apple Pay was especially great.)  Still, I'm looking forward to using it and confident it will be cool.
  • "Hey Siri" without pressing the home button.  This is way cooler than you might think.  I'm not a Siri user - or at least I wasn't - but now it is so easy to try stuff that I do.  "Hey Siri, where's the nearest post office?"  Etc.  Siri still doesn't work that well, but the ability to access it just by speaking is game changing.
  • Faster.  Yep, it is.

SE closeup - flush camera, and it's awesome

That cool camera is capable of some amazing close-ups, check out the self-portrait at right, showing how the camera does not stick out.  (click to enbiggen; again, resolution downsampled by 200%)

Not so great things:

  • I was forced to upgrade to iTunes 12 in order to restore to this phone.  Okay, I get it, forward motion, but I was holding out because iTunes 12 seems like a step backward from 11.  All that Apple Music stuff that I don't care about ... everything moved around ...  Anyway IIWII.
  • As always, remembering all my accounts and passwords and re-logging into everything is a massive PITA.  Now that we have fingerprint recognition built into the phone, can't we do away with all this crap?  Seems like once I've authenticated myself with my finger, everything else should be known...
  • I still don't like the virtual keyboard.  It is so fast and the auto correction is so useful that it is almost as good as a real keyboard, but almost is not quite.  I mentally flirted with getting a Blackberry Priv for just this reason ... but I didn't pull the trigger.  (The reviews of the Priv's keyboard mostly said "this keyboard isn't as good as previous Blackberries)

SE infinityAll in all a worthy upgrade.  "Hey Siri, will the iPhone 7 be available in the 5" form factor?"

 

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