Out with the old… kind of

Out with the old, in with the new.  The last section of the Bar Mills Bridge is now gone. (Feb 3 1:29 p.m.)

So it’s been over a month since I got the iPhone (as a Christmas present).  As someone who’s used to using an Android— a Motorola smartphone, it was interesting testing out the differences between the devices.  I’m sure there have been comparison tests before, so I guess this post will be relevant to my specific needs and environment.  This isn’t exactly a fair review, considering neither model are new, nor is this a comprehensive review.

Okay, so I still have the old phone. (Dec 25 11:51 a.m.)
Okay, so I still have the old phone. (Dec 25 11:51 a.m.)

The first thing I tested, with the iPhone— once I got through the rigmarole in getting to the home screen for the first time— was the camera.  Of course.  The camera was one of the main reasons I considered a possible upgrade.  Lucky for me, the SE carries the same rear camera as the 6s.  (Not to mention, better battery life than the 6s.)

Motorola, adjusted. (Apr 21, 2016 1:06 p.m.)
iPhone, HDR. (Jan 19 2:13 p.m.)

The gamma curve appears better with the iPhone, that the colors are more intense, meeting the brightness of the artificial lighting better.  Compared to Android, the iOS Camera with HDR usually produces better results, and sometimes even makes the resulting photo darker than the “normal” shot, whereas the Android app always renders HDR images brighter than “normal,” easily “overexposing” the images.

The spectral sensitivities of a camera are particularly important.

Motorola, unadjusted. (Jan 13 3:44 a.m.)
Motorola, unadjusted. (Jan 13 3:44 a.m.)
(Jan 13 3:45 a.m.)
Motorola, HDR, unadjusted. (Jan 13 3:45 a.m.)

This bottle makes for a good test of the spectral ranges of the lens due to the range of wavelengths the bottle returns; its color to the human eye is closer to a soft indigo, unlike the “sky blue” above.  (The envelopes in the top-left corner are also noticeably bluish, not to mention that red spot in the center.)  Incorrect spectral curves of the lens make it impossible to correct images with multiple areas of inaccurate colors.

iPhone, unadjusted (Jan 13 3:43 a.m.)
iPhone / HDR. (Jan 13 3:44 a.m.)
iPhone, HDR, unadjusted. (Jan 13 3:44 a.m.)

The five-element lens of the iPhone Sony Exmor RS camera has such accuracy to the point manual color correction isn’t necessary in most cases, at least for posting on a blog where I needn’t be spending so much time “fixing” my photos.

Blackout. (Dec 25 2:11 p.m.)
The entrance to the bathroom, mid-day. (Dec 25 2:11 p.m.)

One major area, in terms of my needs with a camera, is low-light.  The Android software apparently forces a black level in effort to reduce noise; the cost of that is not being able to take photos in the dark without the image turning out mostly black.  Low-light noise with the iPhone camera can stand out, but at least you can take photos of the stars at night.  (Venus generally comes out a blur.)

iPhone. (Jan 27 6:27 p.m.)
(Feb 10 5:29 p.m.)
Snow moon. (Feb 10 5:29 p.m.)

The built-in software isn’t great for capturing the moon.  But this can help.

Now.  On to the operating system portion of this review.

One of the earliest drawbacks I had to face was the lack of access to the phone’s storage with the PC.  This is deliberate of Apple, to prevent hacking.  But it is a disadvantage for someone used to being able to put files of any kind onto the Android, including song lyrics.  (The iOS Notes app doesn’t quite do it for me.)  You need a third party program to read anything beyond photos or apps from an iPhone; iTunes only gives you limited access to audio files and won’t let you copy files it doesn’t recognize.  Also, access to photos is one-way.  In order to modify the contents of an iPhone like a computer, you have to jailbreak it.

(Jan 27 4:50 p.m.)

Even using the iPhone as is allowed is time consuming.  It took a while to install just one app (FireFox).  I had to create an iTunes account, which was only effective by computer.  And with iTunes you must enter your password on every app installation (or once for a short period of time).  Apple is heavy on security.

One of the worst areas of the iOS operating system, compared to Android, is typing, actually.  Selecting text is a notable pain, especially since the software assumes you want to put the cursor at the end of a word.  Fixing a typo, you may have to retype most or all of a word, unless you know how to tap the right way.  To be fair, Android has its own share of problems, including those scenarios where the virtual Keyboard continuously closes, leaving you unable to type at all.

(Jan 19 2:18 p.m.)

Many of the built-in apps are dependent on internet access.  If you’re in airplane mode, you will not be able to watch videos stored on the iOS device with the TV app.  I had to force quit the Music app when it hanged after attempting to play a file from a website the app no longer had access to.  It was a lost battle getting it to play again, at first, not knowing how to force quit an app.  It’s easier figuring out how to work the Android.  I even prefer Google Play’s interface over that of the “Music” app.  But that’s just me.

In short, I’m still reluctant to carry my service over to the newer phone.

Well, that’s it for this small review.  I have more photos to share, taken with the new camera.  Until next time…

(Feb 11 4:17 p.m.)
(Feb 11 4:17 p.m.)

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