Most of my friends would bear with me on this one. I’m neither overtly geeky, nor do I have a habit of going in hyperbole every time a new gadget arrives on the block. I’m an average Joe, but some one who lives everyday to find truth in that adage — old habits die hard. Since the 3S, I have always struggled to explain why I use iPhones and honestly, this is the first feeble attempt in many years.
I stayed up last night for the big Apple event - waiting with a sense of anticipation that I used to have going on early dates with Rashi — now my long-suffering wife and someone who was shooed away from the room at least thrice last night while I hung on on to every word Tim Cook and Phil Schiller said.
The announcement on the Apple Watch Series 3 was interesting (allow me to paraphrase Eliot and there is a voice in my head that says ‘I grow old, I grow old, I shall wear the bottom of my trousers rolled, Shall I track my heart rate? Do I dare buy the AppleWatch3?). The Apple TV upgrades to 4K content came and went. And the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus turned out , for me at least, to be damp squibs. Sure the Plus seems like an improvement on then camera front on all existing iPhones but then, I’m perilously close to wearing plus-sized clothes and don’t want to get into the realm of plus-sized iPhones. The iPhone 8 maybe an upgrade from my current 6S but it’s just that — an upgrade and, from where I stand, not worth the hullabaloo.
But then came the Iphone X (it was a relief to know it is the iPhone ‘TEN’ and not iPhone ‘EX’) and I started wondering “do I dare, do I dare?”. A $1000-price tag ($999— almost Bata-like pricing that plays mind-games) and that’s just the one with 64GB space — the next one has 256GB and the price tag is $1149. As a first step, I bought 200 GB space on the iCloud and then contemplated how Rashi may be won over. When it comes to i-anything, she is the perfect cross-over between a Philistine and a Luddite.
I could in theory show her why it is an incredible piece of hardware with great improvements in software. Compare it to any smartphone on the stands now and it is the proverbial ‘infinity’ pool on top of the Empire State building compared to a standard rooftop on any Manhattan high-rise. It has FaceID — it comes alive when you look at it. It does away with all that I’ve held as eternal truths about the iPhone including the home button. That perhaps necessitated by the new OLED edge-to-edge display or as Apple puts it the ‘Super Retina’. I’m not yet going into the forward facing array of sensors that learn to recognise your face, the animated emojis that some of my family members with dive straight into, the pimped-up camera and the smart features like AR, some shared from that iterative improvement, the iPhone 8.
Perhaps I could try telling her that, to my mind, this is simply the best iPhone ever. But then that wouldn’t cut much ice. To the analytical android users, features make a difference as does the price - and iPhones are vanity devices which put a premium on form over function.
As my mind raced to how this new-found lust for the iPhone would be bankrolled and explained on the home-front, ironically Queen wafted through my latest acquisition — a vinyl player — singing “this could be heaven for everyone”. Heaven or hell, I want this ‘forbidden Apple’ — mic drop!
(The author Prasad Sanyal is the Group Editor, Digital, ZMCL. Opinions expressed are the personal views of the author and do not reflect the views of ZMCL.)