Two days ago, Apple introduced a new, smaller iPad, the iPad Mini. It is my considered opinion that they screwed up, and for that I’m grateful. It means my purchase of a Nexus 7 two weeks ago was not a mistake.
So… What is it I think they got wrong? There’s the price! But, if I was looking for another expensive Apple product that integrated flawlessly with my existing hardware ecosystem, the iPad mini might be a good choice. I have a 10" iPad for that, though. The big thing that I think they got wrong is the size. It may fit in your hand well, and it may fit in a medium sized purse, or a coat pocket, but it does not fit in many sports coat, or suit jacket inside pocket, and it does not fit in my pants’ back pocket. The new iPad Mini is just too wide, and the Nexus 7 is exactly right.
This is mindblowing stuff. Apple’s new maps app, which they’ve touted with great bluster since their first announcement of its impending release as part of iOS 6, and which replaces the highly effective Google maps app, is showing horrible, ridiculous, and sometimes humorous results. In one of the examples cited in Britain’s Daily Telegraph, a reader has them listing a business which went defunct 15 years ago.
Apparently iOS 6 does do walking and transit directions, contrary to the claim I made in a previous post. They’re not gone, they’re just not immediately obvious.
Check Lifehacker for the details.
Stand by for more updates, and iOS secrets
The iPhone 5 is a relatively solid update to the 4S, but there’s not much revolutionary from a user’s point of view, except perhaps the improved battery life. Here’s a quick rundown of what is new:
- It’s thinner, longer, and lighter
- Faster Apple A6 processor
- LTE connection speed, if your carrier suports it, and tweaked wifi
- Longer screen, giving a proper 16×9 (widescreen) layout, and room for an extra row of icons on the launcher. Width of the screen remains the same.
- New connector (re-purchase all your accessories)
- New headset (EarPods)
- New aluminum case. No more glass back.
- Better camera front, and back
- Better battery life
- Prices are the same
- Oh, yeah… iOS 6
Click here for the official Apple page on the new iPhone.
iOS 6 introduces some new features to old apps, but there’s nothing really revolutionary app-wise. Here’s a quick summary:
- Maps – Apple is doing their own maps. You’ll get turn by turn navigation, guided by Siri, and ‘flyover’ view. Only driving directions, though. No walking, or public transit. 4S or later, iPad 2 or later. Google Maps will now be available as a third party app, but will not come with iOS devices any more.
- Siri – a bit smarter, and understands more about things like movies, restaurants, sports scores, and so on. 4S or later, iPad 3rd generation or later.
- Facebook – integrated with the system
- Shared Photo Streams – exactly what it sounds like
- Passbook – tracks tickets, passes, and discount cards
- Facetime – now works over carrier, but it must be allowed by the carrier. Check with your carrier.
- Phone – reply with text message, call back reminders by time, or location, do not disturb mode bsed on a set time period, set contacts you want as VIP’s, and they will still ring through.
- Mail – VIP contact’s emails go in VIP mailbox. Easier attachment of photos, and videos.
- Safari – iCloud tabs lets you synchronize your browsing from device to device. That is, browse on your computer, run out the door, and pick up exactly where you were on your phone later. Full screen landscape view. Offline reading mode for iPhone 4 or later, iPod Touch 5th gen or later.
- Accessibility – there are some ‘made for iPhone hearing aids’. 4S or later. Who knew?
- Privacy – can see network access on a per-app basis, and disable those strange apps that want a network for no good reason.
- Camera – panorama mode – 4S or later, iPod Touch 5th gen or later.
- Stores – they all had a face lift in the interest of user experience
- Find My iPhone, and Find My Friends – now requires a ‘registered’ wifi network, or a carrier connection.
Correction: Looks like I must correct myself already. Click here.
Here are a couple of links to the official, Apple information:
iOS 6’s New Features
Scroll to the bottom of this linked page to see what works on which device.
And here’s another Apple link showing availability by country:
iOS 6’s Feature Availability