I used to get a new iPhone every two years. I began with iPhone 2, then 4, then 6, then 8. But I didn’t buy iPhone 10. Or 11. And I don’t see any reason to get iPhone 12.
In each of those earlier iterations, there was an impressive enough addition or update to the technology to make me want to upgrade (Siri, Touch ID, etc.). But I watched Tim Cook’s presentation earlier this month about the iPhone 12, and he spent most of the time talking up its compatibility with 5G networks and how much better the camera is.
Here’s the problem: I can’t get the former and don’t care about the latter.
Don’t get me wrong. The 5G technology sounds amazing, and I’d like to have it. The phone companies say they’re rolling out 5G across the country, but it’s not here yet. They’re starting in the cities, and I live in the suburbs — where I lose the cell signal if I walk to certain parts of my house. It’s like telling me I should buy a really fast car because there’s a road specifically designed to allow you to drive as fast as you want, but it’s in Germany.
As for the camera, I’m not doing any advanced photography, nothing ready for a gallery. In fact, the only ones who ever see the photos I take are my wife and daughter, and they’ve never once complained about the quality of the picture (unless you include operator errors, like my finger partially covering the lens). I don’t need my smartphone to have a camera that’s world-class. I just need it to capture a few moments in my life every now and then when I can emerge from my pandemic cocoon.
Cook also talked about how the new chips in iPhone 12 make it even faster, perfect for streaming video or multi-player live gaming. Yeah, but I don’t watch movies and shows on my phone because I own a television with a nice big screen. And I’m not a gamer. I think the last video game I played was Qbert at Sean Patrick’s Pub in Hartford in 1985.
If Apple comes out with an iPhone that guarantees my phone calls will always go through, no matter where I stand in my house, I’ll buy it in an instant. But until then, I’m fine over here in the corner with my iPhone 8.