I’ve Been Vectorized

Periodically I will share some of my favorite websites, podcasts, videos, and/or blogs I follow to learn about the Apple-centric tech-o-sphere. This is one of those posts. The last time I posted about a podcast was back in October of 2016 after I discovered The Checklist. Today, I’d like to tell you about Vector.

T-Shirt, pin, and stickers with Vector logo

My new Vector T-shirt, pin, and stickers on the dining room table.

Vector is what I call a three-in-one resource by Rene Ritchie from iMore. It’s videos, a podcast, and a blog (or series of articles, if you wish) where Mr. Ritchie provides insight into the world of Apple technology with short, palatable, and entertaining morsels of online media. I say “three-in-one” because his content is provided in any of the three ways in which you want to consume it — as a blog (or article) you read, as a podcast you listen to, or as a video that you watch. I personally subscribe to the Vector channel on YouTube, but you can read, listen, or watch right on iMore.

His latest posts (as of this writing) are reviews of the Watch Series 4 and the iPhone XS and XS Max. They are a little longer than his usual five to 15 minutes, but well worth a look/listen if you are at all interested in the new hardware that Apple introduced on September 12, 2018.

So, check out Vector and let me know what you think in the comments below. As Rene would say, “Thank you so much for reading.”

Apple, you’ve got some ’splainin’ to do!

20180912-apple-event-invite

I did not get an invitation, but Apple live streamed the event, so I watched. And I’ve got some questions. Whether Apple answers them or not is up to them.

Gather round?

What’s with this title? If it is a title, why is it not set in title case, as in “Gather Round”? And, does this really mean “gather around”? If so, where’s the apostrophe for the missing “a” (i.e. Gather ’Round)? The grammar police surely started surveillance back in 1997 with your Think Different campaign. Why they let you continue to get away with abuse of the English language, I’ll never understand.

What’s in a name?

I’ll tell you what. The shaking of heads (and probably some fists), that’s what. Last year was confusing enough with iPhone X. But it looks cool and goes along with the history of Apple using a roman numeral for 10 (except for when they don’t, like for Xcode). So I got used to the name and mostly remembered to pronounce the X as “ten”. I also love using it and am looking forward to the new iPhone experience that iOS 12 will bring.

But, iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR? Seriously? Let me see if I got this right.

iPhone Xs Emoji

(In case it’s not obvious, that’s a man singer emoji — the closest thing to a tenor in the emoji character set. Don’t you just hate it when someone explains their jokes? 🙄)

My cell phone has a first name,
It’s I-P-H-O-N-E.
My cell phone has a second name,
It’s X-S-M-A-X.
Oh, I love to use it everyday,
And if you ask me why I say,
’Cause Apple people have a way with M-A-R-K-E-T-I-N-G!

What’s on your wrist?

It’s not a Capital One credit card, that’s for sure. Well, I take that back. I have an Watch Series 1 and I do have a CapOne credit card in the Apple Wallet app and can use it via ApplePay from the watch. After my iPhone X, the Watch is my favorite Apple device. The Watch Series 4 is the announcement from this week’s event that is most drool worthy for me. Will I buy one? I’m thinking it’s time to upgrade, yes.

Watch

The Long Wait is Over

After the Apple Watch was introduced in the Spring of 2015, I wrote a short post entitled “Which Watch.” Twenty months later, I finally purchased one. I did get the Space Gray 42mm aluminum with black fluoroelastomer sport band. Since I waited so long, I had a choice between the Series 1 and Series 2. Target made my choice easier due to a Black Friday discount on the Series 1.

I was originally planning on making this an unboxing photo essay, but it’s now been almost a year, so what’s the point? The introduction of the Series 3 has prompted me to come back to this draft post and wrap it up, finally!

My First Apple Watch

I did have an Apple Watch prior to the introduction of what the tech community is now calling “series 0,” however.

Original Apple Watch

Even though it thought different [differently?], it was not smart. So I was glad to upgrade to the Series 1.

Watch Series 1 Box

It has been a fun 11 months with the Watch Series 1. I use it primarily for notifications, a remote for playing audio from my iPhone 6s, and, in the last six months, walk workout fitness tracking. Having the watch has motivated me to get out and move more than I had been in many years, so I think it has been a good investment.

Watch Series 1 on Wrist

So, there you have it. I’ve incorporated the Watch into my daily routine. Now, another decision has to be made. Do I upgrade to the Series 3? And if so, do I go for LTE?

Which Watch?

Do I want an  Watch? Yes. Do I need an  Watch? Probably not. Will I buy an  Watch? At some point, yes. Which  Watch? 42mm Sport with black fluoroelastomer band.

But first I want an iPhone 6. And before that I need a new Mac.

The  Watch is getting more and more expensive. 😜

Apple gives developers a hug.

Apple gives developers a hug.

Dave Wiskus writing for Macworld:

Those of us who make software tend to see our industry through the lens of what came before us: a scrappy group of nerds banded together to start software companies and change the world. It’s easy to continue to cast ourselves as the underdogs, but the truth is that we won. Technology is cool now. People are buying computing devices and software at a rate unmatched in history. All kinds of people like this stuff, and now Apple is empowering and encouraging us to make software for all kinds of people.

As a user (not a developer), I agree with Mr. Wiskus’ take on Apple’s WWDC keynote. Last year I thought we were seeing the emerging of Tim Cook’s Apple. This year it’s beginning to blossom.

Be sure to watch the short WWDC Developer Reactions video.

The Unboxing

I’ve had a Space Gray iPhone 5s since mid-November, 2013. I have put off getting any kind of case, wanting to see how if fares naked under normal use. I did apply a screen protector film on the face (since it came at a discount from Best Buy when I purchased the phone), but that’s the only protection it’s had—up to this point.

Yesterday, I put my iPhone in one of Apple’s leather cases. I wanted the (PRODUCT) RED™ case—because I like the color red and I like that a portion of the purchase price is donated to the Global Fund to fight AIDS in Africa—but our local Best Buy only carried the black and brown ones. (Aside: there are a number of reasons I chose to purchase from Best Buy instead of directly from Apple or some other retailer, but I won’t bore you with that story.) So I ordered one for in-store pickup early last week and it came in—and I picked it up—yesterday on my way home.

As I sat down to take it out and put it on my iPhone while waiting for the Papa Murphy’s pizza to bake, I decided to be a little silly and take unboxing photos to share with all my loyal fans (I say with tongue firmly planted in cheek). So here you go world, my Apple (PRODUCT) RED™ leather iPhone 5s case unboxing and installation. Enjoy…

Remove Bust Buy Label

1. First I removed the ugly shipping label that Best Buy applied to get it to our local store.

New Case in Box

2. The front of the now pristine package.

Back of Box

3. The back side of the package.

Opening and Leather Notice

4. The rack hanger is built into the top opening of the package. To open it, a plastic strip needs to be ripped off (indicated by the arrow in the orange dot). The text below reads, “This case is made from natural aniline leather. It’s appearance will change as you use it.”

Top Open

5. After ripping off the plastic strip, the top opens easily.

Slide Out the Goods

6. Once opened, the case and cardboard backing easily slide out of the plastic package.

Take Case Off Backing

7. The leather iPhone case just pops off the cardboard backing. After which, the phone easily popped into the leather case.

Phone in Case Front

8. The front of my iPhone 5s, now in the red leather case.

Phone in Case Back

9. The back of the case protecting my iPhone 5s. Such a pretty red.

 

Two-fer: Verizon sticks it to rival carriers in the US

Two-fer: Verizon sticks it to rival carriers in the US

The offer underscores the competitive nature of the U.S. mobile market, where Verizon faces intense competition from rival AT&T, as well as stepped-up price wars prompted by T-Mobile. Yankee Group estimates AT&T and Verizon are neck-and-neck when it comes to share of domestic mobile phone lines, at roughly 33 percent each.

Two crappy customer experiences for the price of one is good business. Anything is better than paying the higher subsidies to Apple—customer be damned!

The Dark Side

If you are looking at buying Google because of the Android OS, don’t waste your time. Google is a great company, and the plethora of Android devices only serves to extend their lead when it comes to services like Google Search, Gmail, YouTube, and Google Maps. However, the company can’t police the use of Android in the way that Apple can control the iOS system. If you are looking at buying Amazon, do it because of their huge competitive advantage of low prices, fast shipping, Amazon Prime, and more. However, if you are looking for a great device company, look at Apple. The company has tight control over its hardware and software offerings, and the difference in quality apps on iOS versus Android is stark.

Chad Henage, writing for The Motley Fool shares his thoughts about switching from an iPhone to a Samsung Galaxy Note 2 — and back — in a piece entitled, My Journey to the “Dark Side”.