iPhone 7: Old wine in a New Black Bottle

Published: Fri, 09/09/2016 - 11:45

The iphone 7 is another expensive toy from the Apple stable aimed at people who do not care too much about price tags.

Nikhil Thiyyar Delhi

One of the primary gripes that any smartphone user has is usually with the battery of the phone. It is annoying to charge the phone every four hours or, worse, carry around a power bank which looks like a life support system for your device. Not content with making phones which cost a bomb, Apple has unloaded upon its unsuspecting and affluent customers another device to charge i.e. the Apple airpods. In true Apple tradition, these wireless earphones are marketed as revolutionary, the best-ever, the fastest. As the high priests of technology, whatever Apple says is regarded as gospel. Except that it is not. 

The Cupertino-based company has been in the habit of refining existing market technologies and then launching them years later and referring to them as the acme of technological innovation. The airpods are another example of this. Wireless earphones have been around for a while. What Apple has done is remove a venerable open standard called the 3.5mm jack and replaced it with a closed proprietary standard called airpods. Those who have already invested in good quality headphones will be forced to lug around an adapter. Expect confusion and frustration to follow. If the Apple ecosystem was a closed garden prior to this, then it has taken one step closer to becoming the digital equivalent of Fort Knox. 

While 2k screens have begun to hit the market at lower price points, users who buy the iPhone 7 will have to be content with full HD screens. Also missing from the phones is the splitscreen multi-tasking feature which most Android phones have by now. The new dual lens camera, however, is positively jaw dropping. It simulates a bokeh effect, which makes an image look like it was shot by a DSLR. The 7 Plus gets dual 12MP cameras - the two lenses have different focal lengths allowing you to zoom in without losing image quality. Another feature that lets you separate foreground and background with depth of field effects is coming soon via software update.  

The iPhone is also water resistant which means, when you drop your phone into the toilet, it won’t die on you. Never mind that water-resistant phones have been around in the market for years. 

The iPhone comes in a super jet-black variant which scratches easily, defeating the purpose of introducing a new colour. The message is: here is your new phone, coddle it in wool because it is made of jet-black porcelain. 

Perhaps the biggest complaint that Indian smartphone users should have with the iPhone is that it is unaffordable. Whenever a new iPhone is released, Twitter buzzes with jokes about kidneys which need to be sold to buy the phone. That trend of inaccessibility continues. At Rs 63,000, a savvy buyer could buy a One Plus Three (unarguably the best Android phone on the market) and take a four-day trip to Bangkok. As the popular Nirma Super ad in the 1990s put it, “Par wahi safedi mujhe kam damo mein mile to koi woh kyun le.” 

Given that the market share of Apple in India’s remains a measly 2.7 percent, the launch of the Iphone 7 is unlikely to change that scenario. The iPhone was and remains an illogical toy for the elite.

The iphone 7 is another expensive toy from the Apple stable aimed at people who do not care too much about price tags
Nikhil Thiyyar Delhi

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