I am a gadget nerd. I think everyone who knows me know this about me. Given a choice between buying something I should probably buy and a new gadget, I will probably buy the gadget. Not surprisingly, most of my gadgets are from Apple.
Back in 2009, my aunt and cousin gave me the money to buy my first Macbook Pro – the one I still use at home to this day. It is an amazing, beautiful piece of hardware that has served me well over the past three years and will probably continue to serve me well into the future.
In 2010, my wife and I got our first iPod Touch, and we fell in love with it almost immediately. The ease of operation was a big selling point for Nichole, and for me – well, it was a nifty gadget.
Last spring, I sold a guitar and my iPod to buy an iPad 2 – one of the best investments I ever made. My iPad is my life. It organizes everything that was scattered and confused about me. Using just a couple of apps (Evernote being the chief one), I am able to search and access years of papers and thoughts that until now resided in several file boxes in my basement.
Last winter, Nichole got the iPhone 4S and I bought an LG Englighten, which runs on the Droid OS. I was being fiscally conservative – getting an inexpensive phone so the monthly phone payments could go toward her phone, which she needed for work. (Nichole works in a deaf program, so text messages and email is the staff’s primary means of communication during the day. Couple that with a very active schedule, and you can see why she would need one.)
While Nic was thoroughly enjoying her iPhone, I was raging at my Droid. It was fugly, and it required factory resets about every 6 weeks. This means constantly having to reinstall apps and dealing with duplicated files. The media player was garbage, and the onscreen keyboard had keys so small I couldn’t type on them. On top of that, the battery generally lasted about 4 hours unless I went in and killed all my apps about ever 20 minutes.
Then the iPhone 5 was announced. Our mobile provider had switched to the pooled data plan, and since there are nine devices on our plan (only 2 for Nic and I, we share a plan with my brother from another mother, Charlie.) I scraped together my pennies, and Charlie let me have one of his device upgrades; and at 3:01am on release day, I ordered an iPhone 5.
It arrived a week ago. I pressed a couple of buttons and voila! All my contact information, all my notes and files from my iPad were on the iPhone as well. Choirs of angels sang. It was great.
I love the iPhone 5. I really do. The experience is fantastic. The device is a miracle of technology.
But then, during Sunday service, Siri – the sometimes obnoxious assistant that resides within the iPhone 4S and 5 – started talking from my pocket. This was not good. She kept talking. I had to to turn the phone off.
She kept doing it – talking when she was supposed to. Eventually, my home button stopped working. Long story short, I spent yesterday between two visits to the Apple store and last night, walked out with a brand new iPhone 5. Turns out my initial handset had a defect, a bad connection that short circuited the home button.
The process of moving my files and stuff from the broken iPhone 5 to the new one? About ten minutes because everything was backed up on iCloud (which is finally a legitimate cloud service). All my apps took a little while longer to download, but the iCloud backup restored all the app data so once they were on the iPhone they had all the same data. I replaced the handset and did not lose a single thing.
The post-Steve Jobs Apple builds systems. This is a very different Apple from the one that made hip music players and cute little white laptops. The iPhone 4, 4S and 5 – the iPad 2 and 3 – the new iPod Touch – Siri – iCloud – even the new Thunderbolt and Lightning digital connectors – all of this is part of a system that is shifting attention away from individual devices to a comprehensive mobile solution for connectivity and sharing. Right now, they are working out the kinks; and it is a little frustrating for some of the early adopters because they are thinking on a much smaller scale than Tim Cook and his team are.
I love my iPhone 5. I love the apps being written for it. I am in love with the Cloud and its potential.
Did I mention my iPhone is LTE and so in Manchester and Nashua my cellular data connection is actually faster than my home connection?
Yeah, I like my new phone. I like what Apple is doing.