TECHNOLOGYBUTTON editor has been playing with the idea of switching from Android to iPhone 12 for a long time. After its introduction, however, the new Apple smartphone turns out to be a bitter disappointment – for three reasons!
Until Tuesday evening I had the hope that the iPhone 12 would be the “Next Big Thing”. It should be the iPhone that moves me to say goodbye to the Android world. My demands on the smartphone were actually not that high. At the beginning of September I also wrote that I only needed one function to make me switch. You can find the full article on TECHNOLOGYBUTTON.
But the iPhone 12 brought me back down to earth. Not only that my request for a 120 Hertz screen was not met. No, Apple has made a couple of pretty blunders with its latest iPhone generation.
1. New, old design
Tim Cook himself speaks of a new era for iPhones. Sure, the statement is mainly related to the 5G integration in the new smartphones. Nevertheless, the announcement echoes a bit if you look at the iPhone 12 from a sober perspective.
Because at first glance, the new iPhone looks exactly like its predecessor. Who already looked like his predecessor, who also looked like his predecessor, who looked like his predecessor. Since the iPhone X from 2017, Apple has not changed the general look. That wouldn’t be that bad in itself if the original design had been good enough. But still to come onto the market in 2020 with a huge notch (screen indentation). That just seems too old-fashioned to me.
After all, the case should be smaller and flatter. This was achieved, among other things, by the fact that the edges are now flat instead of round. In itself, this is not an improvement, but a change. You could even see it as a step backwards. After all, Apple must have had a reason to abandon the angular design of the iPhone 4, 4s, 5, 5s and SE in favor of the rounded edges starting with the iPhone 6.
2. Apple reduces the accessories to the absolute minimum
Apple plans to become climate neutral by 2030. That means: recycled materials, less packaging – and fewer accessories. That Apple no longer puts EarPods in the box, everyone can live with that, I think. The demands on music quality have become higher and if you buy an iPhone for 800 euros, you usually have something left for a smart pair of headphones.
However, I see the waiver of a power supply in the scope of delivery as problematic. Apple argues that virtually everyone already has tons of USB chargers at home. That may be true, but the company is hiding two important facts. First, the iPhone has a 20 watt fast charge function. However, this is only possible with a correspondingly powerful power supply unit. So if you don’t have a specific charger for the iPhone 11, a newer iPad or a MacBook, you probably won’t be able to charge the iPhone 12 quickly. Second, with the iPhone 12, Apple supplies a USB-C to Lightning cable. Most USB chargers, however, still have a USB-A output. In order to use the cable, it is therefore imperative to buy a suitable charger. Of course, Apple offers this directly as an accessory for a mere 24,
Therefore, to all iPhone 12 buyers who do not yet have an iPhone and a power supply unit with a USB-C output at home: Don’t forget to order a suitable charger!
3. Is Apple giving up catching up?
Last year I called the iPhone 11 a “facelift” because there were hardly any new functions that were worth talking about. With the iPhone 12 I can only repeat this criticism. The only innovation that I think has really taken a lot of engineering from Apple is 5G. But since I live in a country that is known for its notoriously poor network coverage and quality, at least this year and next I am not giving much attention to the new wireless standard.
I had high hopes for what the iPhone 12 would be able to do. No more notch, Touch ID under the screen or in the side button. A completely new screen with a 120 Hertz refresh rate. In short, all things that have been around for a long time in Android smartphones. Last year, Apple was still playing catch-up and donated an additional ultra-wide-angle camera to the iPhone 11 to catch up with Android. The iPhone 12, on the other hand, is stagnating.
Instead, Apple only gave us what we expect to come back every year anyway. Better cameras, more power, faster this and better that. And the rest? MagSafe? I only see it as a strategy to sell even more and above all more expensive accessories. LiDAR? Nice, but depth of field works very well with software alone. An additional sensor will hardly change that. A four times stronger display glass with the pretentious name “Ceramic Shield”? Apple Marketing.
Only with the new Dolby Vision HDR function for videos can Apple really convince me as a video enthusiast. This function is made possible by the impressive computing power of the A14 bionic chip in the iPhone 12. Not only can videos be shot with Dolby Vision HDR, but they can also be edited immediately. Up until now, both filming and editing required expensive equipment. The iPhone 12 is therefore again an excellent choice for filmmakers. For someone like me, however, who has more demands, the smartphone is still not an option due to its limitations.
A failure in three sizes
I was ready to leave Android behind in favor of the iPhone 12. The iPhone is still the go-to device for performance fanatics and video enthusiasts – I count myself to both. But Android smartphones are not far away in these areas and offer a lot more that the iPhone cannot.
Ultimately, everyone has to know for themselves which smartphone is the right one for themselves – and after all, Apple offers more sizes than ever. However, I am of the opinion that a company like Apple cannot rest on its laurels, but rather has to move the industry forward. But as long as iPhone owners buy a new iPhone year after year, there is probably no reason to do so. Apple buyers should therefore take a look at the Android world. You don’t have to buy one right away. But at least it sharpens the sense of what you are missing out on when you buy an iPhone.