I bought my first iPhone a few years back. Started out with the 3GS model. At the time I really didn’t have any interest in any type of smartphone. I was perfectly content with my regular old cell phone. I mean, really, I need to be able to call people and get text messages. Why on earth would I need an iPhone?
I was out with my friend one night and he had his new iPhone3GS. I have to admit that curiosity got the best of me when I saw him fiddling around with it, so I asked him if I could see it. As soon as I saw that I could get on the net, and the picture was a lot higher quality than I had imagined, I started getting the itch. I went home and told my wife “We need to look into getting iPhones”. That weekend we went down to the phone shop with the intention of just looking, then we walked out with 2 shiny new iPhones. Black for her, white for me. After having it for less than a week I knew there was no way I could ever go back to a regular cell phone.
The people at the shop kind of screwed us though. 2 weeks after we bought our 3GS models the iPhone4 came out. If she had told us they were coming out that soon we could have waited. Unfortunately though, I think it was a trick to sell the leftover 3GS’s. Did I mention that trying to return something in Japan is akin to trying to tap dance in KISS boots? So there we sat with iPhone3GS’s while everyone started walking around with the new iPhone4. The new shape really appealed to me too. I was really bummed having to be stuck with the 3GS. Now, let me say that I fully understand that there are people in this world that don’t even have access to a telephone, let alone one that lets you surf the net, so it sounds kind of petty for me to be whining about this. It probably comes off like I’m saying my 2lb steak isn’t juicy enough and my glass slippers are too tight. But, I don’t live in one of those under privileged countries, I’ve worked since I was 15 years old, and I can afford to be a little bit of a bitch if I want to. Don’t hate on me because I can afford the toys I want.
Anyway, a year passed and the iPhone4S came out. Screw the 2 year contract, I’m not missing this one. So down to the shop we went again. We were very fortunate to find out that to switch to the 4S they weren’t going to charge the 100 dollar cancellation fee for breaking your contract on the 3GS. We got a double out of that when they told us that we didn’t even have to pay off what was remaining on the 3GS phones themselves. LUCKY!!! Basically, we just started over from zero with another 2 year contract. Good enough, we went with the 4S. Now, this past year, I have enjoyed this phone. I was only half excited when I heard about the iPhone5 because I like this one so much. My only problem with the 4S is that the inner camera is that crappy VGA camera and it takes crappy video. The 5 fixed that by getting rid of the VGA crap and replacing it with a camera that shoots 720HD. It’s not 1080, but it’s sure as heck a lot better than that VGA crap. Sorry, the letters “VGA” come out of my mouth and the word “crap” just flows out behind it so naturally. VGA crap…..see!!! Anywho, I started Jonesing for the 5 so I went down to the shop and placed my order.
I wasn’t in the first wave of the orders so I was going to have to wait a few weeks. Man, that turned out to be a blessing in disguise. During the few weeks I had to wait the people that already had them were able to post online about all of it’s shortcomings. That’s one good thing about the internet, instant feedback. I don’t think the 5 was out for a day before all the problems started rolling in. Now, granted, some of the complaining sounds like people just want to complain because they can. I mean, who really cares if the back scratches easily? How many people do you know, that have an iPhone, don’t have a case for it? The scratching didn’t bother me too much. To be honest, the problem with the Apple Maps didn’t really bother me that much either. I don’t think I’ve used the maps on either of the iPhones I’ve had. But, I can understand, and sympathize, with the people that rely on them. Apple really dropped the ball on that one. I’ll tell you what hit me though, the camera. You see, my main hobby these days is making videos on YouTube. I’m not the biggest or the best out there, but I enjoy it. I make quite a few videos with my iPhone because it has the 1080HD feature on the outer camera. If the quality of the inner camera would come up then it would be the bomb. It’s hard to vlog holding the camera at arm’s length when you can’t see the monitor. You’re basically guessing that you’re in the frame, and guessing even harder as to WHERE in the frame you are. So the iPhone 5 having this 720HD inner camera sounded like it was going to be the greatest thing since sliced bread. Then the problems started rolling in. You see, Apple took it upon themselves to break a golden rule, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. Yep, for some ungodly reason they decided to put a different glass on this camera. I don’t remember what it’s called but it’s some sort of crystal. Well, what happens with this camera is this, if there is a light source anywhere near the frame, it leaves a purple streak, or purple flare around the edge. Now, Apple, in all their smugness, had the balls to release a statement saying that “You are holding the camera the wrong way” and that light flaring happens to every camera. Well, Apple, that is true, flaring does happen with every camera, but not like this. This is just horrible. Can you imagine if Canon told their users that they were holding the camera the wrong way, or not to point it towards a light source? Apple, bite the bullet and man up like you did with the maps. You screwed up. I’m not sure if this is something an update can fix or not, because I’m not really sure how it works. I suspect it would call for a recall and replace the existing glass. 5 million units sold in the first week? I doubt they’ll be recalling anything anytime soon. Nope, just blame it on the user and sweep it under the rug. As a YouTube content creator this phone is less than useless for me. My wife is into Instagram too so she’s always taking pictures so this is less than useless for her too.
The phone shop called me this past Saturday and told me our phones were in and we could come in and pick them up whenever we had time. We went in that afternoon and talked to the girl at the counter about the camera problems. She said that she hadn’t heard anything. She was nice enough to ask one of the other girls working there if I could do a few test shots with her 5. I took 5 pictures, intentionally putting the light source just out of the frame, and every single one of them had purple flaring on them. She gave us the number to Apple Care and we rang them up right there at the counter. My wife asked the girl from Apple Care “Have you had any complaints about purple flaring/spots on photos?” Her response was “(stutter stutter) Uhhm, we haven’t had that many complaints” so my wife said “But you have had complaints?” and she came back with “I think we’ve had 1 complaint”. HORSESHIT!!! You could tell by her voice that she didn’t want to talk about the camera problems and was trying to steer away from telling us that the phone was probably ringing off the hook. Apple doesn’t like to talk about it’s mistakes. So, we just decided to cancel our order on the iPhone5 and stick with the iPhone4S until our contracts run out next year. By that time the iPhone6 will be coming out and will probably have all the fixes for the iPhone5 problems. They really need to address this glass problem. Instagram is a major player out there today and taking pics with the iPhone is the main way those photos are taken. I’m sure there are a lot of instagrammers out there now bitching up a storm about this, and I don’t blame them one bit.
In my mind, I can’t help to think that if Steve Jobs was still alive that he wouldn’t have allowed these things to happen. Even if he would have this situation today still looks like Apple has lost their course without their fearless leader. There was a time when Apple owners could take pride in saying “It just works”. Well, Apple has destroyed that in one fell swoop. They’re going to have to work hard to gain that trust back.
Y’all come back, I’ll leave the light on for ya!