iPhone 7 - the morning after the night before
With Apple events usually starting at 6pm in U.K. It means we get a few hours of hype but can then sleep on it relatively soon after and re-examine things in the cold light of day.
Here's a few initial thoughts:
Does having a similar design for the third year in a row bother me? Absolutely not. As long as it is streamlined and feels decent in the hand it doesn't matter - it's what it does that counts.
While a faster processor probably won't make much of a noticeable difference in normal use (when do we really max it out?) the fact that it will have two extra, energy efficient cores will provide a nice bump in battery life - this will be noticeable.
Apple took the sting out of removing the headphone jack by including both lightning ear pods and an adapter in the box. Saying that, the move never really concerned me.
What does concern me is that Apple persists with the terrible design and quality of their Ear Pods. They don't sound particularly great and leak sound. I can only hope that the lightning variant has a better dynamic range, but I doubt it.
As for the new wireless Air Pods, I'm sure they are a great technological achievement but they are still the same core design as the Ear Pods but with a massive price tag attached.
As others have already mentioned, they may usher in a mobile experience akin to the film "Her" but I think we're probably another year or two away from anything like this.
I won't be buying them.
I'm also still not completely sold on all aspects of iOS 10 as I think the handling of font sizes is too inconsistent across different apps. This is a relatively minor complaint but annoying nonetheless.
The iPhone 7 leaks over the past few months gave us an incredibly good idea of what to expect, from the body and its revised antenna lines to the new home button and cameras. Even knowing almost exactly what the hardware was going to be like there were still a few surprises.
The A10 Fusion trademark had been uncovered but it was suspected that it might be a combined A10 CPU and M10 motion processor. Having those two low power cores to handle non-intensive tasks and thus extend battery life was a very welcome addition.
Some lament the loss of a physical home button but the way in which the solid state version ties in to the new Taptic engine is a nice touch and the extent was not predicted.
We knew the iPhone 7 Plus was getting a dual camera arrangement, and leaks within the last week even revealed that one would of them would have a telephoto lens, but seeing exactly how they work in tandem is another thing entirely.
Point and shoot
I love taking pictures on my phone and will snap all sorts of weird shots. I had a bridge camera a few years ago (there's no way we could afford a decent DSLR) but, even though it was relatively compact, it was still awkward to carry around.
The saying goes that "the best camera is the one you have with you" so, when the one you always have with you is mostly "good enough" and is far quicker and easier to use, there seems little point carrying an extra bit of kit - at least for the casual photographer.
iPhones already have excellent cameras but trying to do everything with a wide angle lens can be infuriating; smartphones have been crying out for a telephoto lens for years.
Having 2X optical zoom will be a revelation and if the digital zoom is even half as good in real world use as it seemed on stage then the experience will finally match the convenience. Add in the new depth of field functionality and there is almost no reason for most people to ever need another camera.
I can only imagine how pictures like the one below, shot on the iPhone 6S Plus, will come out.
Will I upgrade?
I am on a contract that allows me to trade in my current 6S Plus and upgrade for free so I was always going to move to the 7 Plus. I'm paying a bit extra per month for the privilege so it would be silly not to.
Saying that, the new camera excites me more than any previous hardware feature on any phone, even the move to a large screen with the Nexus 5 a few years ago.
It could be worth an upgrade all on its own.