It’s nearly that time of the year but will Apple deliver?
iPhone 15 should be aware of Nothing 2.
Of course, almost more than any other phone, the release of Apple’s new phone always gains loads of attention. They are the masters of publicity and their September event has become known as the iPhone event.
A few years back Apple had it all its way with little in the way of competition. These days though, Apple needs to look over their shoulders as Google with its Pixel Pro range and Samsung with their S series are offering a pretty stiff test to the iPhone and not only with the phones but the events as well.
Unless all the reliable sources – Gurman, Young & Kuo are collectively off the pace this year, we pretty much know what’s coming with iPhone 15 next month.
Apple will continue to divide its range with even more clarity as more and more features find their way only to the Pro and Pro Max. Only the Pro Max will get the new Periscope camera that we’ve heard so much about and the latest A17 processor will only be used in the Pro & Pro Max.
Dynamic Island will now come to the entire range, as will the frosted glass back & USB-C charging. Even then though the 15 and 15 Plus will have a slower port than the Pro & Pro Max.
There are a few other bits – smaller bezels, a titanium chassis a larger battery and improved camera sensors but by and large, that is pretty much it.
I’m excited and looking forward to it, but it seems that Apple’s think tank is slowing down and running out of ideas while its competitors are bursting with ideas.
Carl Pei since leaving OnePlus you may have noticed, has been shaking things up a bit. I’m not saying he’s got everything right, but he’s not been afraid to break a few rules and look at things differently.
There’s a good chance that you may not have used an Android phone for a while or a Nothing phone at all, so while you know what you’re getting with iOS and iPhone 15 I thought I’d highlight some of the features that have struck me with the Nothing 2 phones OS – some good, some not so good that Apple should at least be taking a look at.
This is an area that Apple continues to shine.
Even if they made no changes to the cameras this year, those on iPhone 14 Pro are nothing short of stunning. Those on the Nothing 2 struggle at times although some decent results can be achieved – but you have to work to get them.
The selfie video camera is unpredictably glitchy at times and gives some jittery results whereas, of course, those on the iPhone are pretty amazing. The Nothing only offers a selfie video in 1080p which oddly you can shoot in either 30 or 60fps. It also gives you the option to shoot in HDR too.
In cinematic mode, Nothing makes it obvious what the ƒ stop button is all about usefully labelling bokeh – and its tiny touches like that make the Nothing feel very personal. It’s small I know, but it feels like they are trying to break down tech barriers. I also like the way that Nothing offers details for the main camera too.
With one touch on the burger menu, all details come up on the screen and are far easier to read (and use) than on the iPhone. It’s super quick and intuitive to choose from the choice of four ratios, switch on the Motion stabilisation and which camera you want to use – the 12MP or 50MP one. The main camera shoots in .6x, 1x or 2x but it makes it super simple to choose.
With iPhone getting pro results is effortless, but as I mentioned on the Nothing you certainly have to work harder and the magic only really comes when you open up the ‘expert’ panel.
There you can start to work with settings such as white balance, ISO, autofocus and exposure and if you take your time to delve into these, you can get some great results – far better than I had originally thought.
So although the iPhone does win on the camera front, iOS could take a look at the clarity of the way the Nothing displays the information and settings.
The obvious USP of the Nothing is, of course, the Glyph lights on the back. I’m not suggesting for a moment that I’d want these on an iPhone, but it shows what some uncluttered, forward-thinking can do for design which used to be a calling card for Apple of course.
The Glyphs on the phone are essentially for notifications and again, once you start playing with them, that is when you can start to have fun. Downloading the Nothing Glyph Composer app opens up a world of options.
When you open the app for the first time you’ll see there is a default setting of Dan, but tapping on that will then reveal more options. Think of these almost like chords in music. The five options have individual sounds to them which you then select to make a recording of your own. That will be saved and you can then use these as ringtones for contacts and notifications.
As I mentioned iPhone 15 will be getting a USB-C port across the entire range this year – but the Nothing 2 already has it. That change for iPhone has been long overdue but one other area that iPhone has fallen behind with is no reverse charging.
The Nothing 2 has got it and it’s super handy. It’s the first time I’ve used a device with reverse charging and it’s just perfect for a quick boost on my AirPods Pro for example when I’m away from home for the day.
The little things
I found out that with Nothing 2 you can arrange the icons way easier than iPhone.
Whereas with iPhone you can only make folders and drag the icons around, on Nothing you can also enlarge the icons and get app info too. You can change the grid layout from four to five icons – this phone aches for personalisation. You can truly make this phone as tailored to your tastes as you want.
The voice recorder has some EQ built-in as well which is another lovely, thoughtful little touch.
I’m still a very happy iPhone user and in so many ways they carry on getting many things right. But they have become a little complacent and have plumped for iterative changes of recent – certainly when it comes to their phone at any rate.
With the basic design of iPhone understandably not changing anytime soon, to avoid starting to feel stale or outdated Apple needs to take a look at the other options out there.
There is nothing wrong with looking around at what others are doing to improve your game – not doing so is a worse crime. Of course, we want Apple and iOS to remain unique and have their own identity, but Apple needs to stop resting on its laurels and give us something more exciting than thinner bezels and new colours.
Apple became great because of their exciting, innovative designs with both its hardware and software. Right now though it looks as if the glory days are taking a rest.
It’s time for Apple to wake up and take Nothing for granted.
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