One of the troublesome thing about taking 1000 selfie photos in New Zealand and relying on your phone for navigation, email, Instagram, and restaurant recommendations is that you constantly run out of battery power. This was particularly annoying for my iPhone 7 because the port that holds the charging cable rarely works. It only charges if you plug in the cord at the perfect angle and nothing forces it ajar.
So I decided to get an iPhone 11 when I returned to the US. I was amazed by how easy it was to activate the new phone–I pretty much just places my old phone next to the new phone, clicked a few buttons, and waited while the two devices talked to each other. I then packed up my old phone in a box that Apple sent me (they pay for old iPhones), and setup was complete!
While it’s a little bigger than I’d like–why do phone companies think we want tablets in our pockets?–and I wasn’t sure how I’d like not having a “home button” (I already don’t miss it), the iPhone 11 a nice upgrade in many subtle ways.
There are also a few not-so-subtle improvements that I’m absolutely loving, and I thought I’d share them with you. These aren’t exclusive to the iPhone 11, but they’re new to me!
- Face ID: I didn’t have a passcode on my iPhone 7 because I didn’t want to deal with the hassle of typing it every time I want to look at my phone. Face ID makes that concern completely irrelevant. Whenever I pick up my phone, there’s a little icon on the lock screen that indicates if I can swipe up to access the apps, and I’m amazed by how quickly it looks at my face and unlocks. It’s completely seamless, and it’s much more secure than my old method.
- Wireless Charging: Remember how annoyed I was by the difficulty of charging my old phone? All I have to do to charge my new phone is place it on a wireless charging point. It makes a contended sound to indicate it’s charging…and that’s it. No fiddling with a cord. No wondering if it’s still charging or not. And it charges fast. I loved the idea of wireless charging before I got this phone, and now I love it even more than I thought I would.
- Portrait Mode: I’m sure there are many hidden gems among my phones new capabilities, but my favorite I’ve discovered so far is portrait mode. It’s a photo option that focuses on an object/person/cat in the foreground and blurs the background for a more polished look. You can see Walter posing for it below. I really like the blurred background look–it’s my Skype setting too–and I hope other cameras (including my YouTube camera and Facebook live) add this feature in the future.
What’s your favorite feature of your phone?