The Battery-Life-and-Camera Edition Wednesday, September 22, 2021

iPhone 13 Review: Yep, Bigger Batteries Are Better, by Dieter Bohn, The Verge

I think it’s all too easy to look at the iPhone 13 and 13 Mini and not think much of the updates this year. Cameras get better every year and every company promises good battery life, after all. And compared to the massive changes we saw on the iPhone last year, the 13 looks iterative, more like an iPhone 12S than truly new models.

I won’t pretend that reading is totally wrong, but I also think it misses the point. Fancy new features are fun, but the fundamentals of battery life and camera are more important. Because if you focus on the fundamentals, your whole game gets better. And the iPhone 13 has got some good game.

iPhone 13 And 13 Mini Review: Time To Upgrade, by Lauren Goode, Wired

Some critics have said that this is an iterative year for the iPhone, and they’re not wrong. But this is what we expect from flagship smartphones now: support for 5G, super responsive displays, better battery life, desktop-grade processors, and cameras that put point-and-shoots to shame. The question for consumers is more about where they are in the upgrade cycle, and what kind of technology they can get in their pockets for a certain price. The iPhone 13 feels like a response to that question—and a good one, at that.

iPhone 13 Pro Review: A Better Display, The Best Camera, And Incredible Battery Life, by Dieter Bohn, The Verge

The iPhone 13 Pro and 13 Pro Max are phones designed for people who care about the details. The improvements over last year’s iPhones are significant but not obvious at first glance.


Upgrading the battery, camera, and screen sounds like an iterative, yearly update; they sound like the so-called “S” updates that Apple used to do for iPhones before its naming schemes became unpredictable. And it is true that the design is virtually identical to that of last year’s iPhone 12 Pros. But those assumptions — those words — don’t quite do justice to how big the changes really are.

Apple's iPhone 13 Pro Is Oddly Light On Pro Features, by Julian Chokkattu, Wired

Slightly better gaming performance, a smoother and brighter display, along with more and better cameras: those are all valid reasons to jump for the Pro. Just know that, more than ever before, you're getting quite a bit with the non-Pro iPhones. And if that means saving a few hundred bucks you can spend on the more important things in life, especially in these difficult times, I'd say that's a win.

The iPhone 13 Pro Goes To Disneyland , by Matthew Panzarino, TechCrunch

In my testing, most of Apple’s improvements actually had a visible impact on the quality of life of my trip, though in some cases not massive. Screen brightness, the longer telephoto and battery life were all bright spots.

Apple Says It Will Update iPhone 13 With Option To Disable Automatic Macro Photography Switching, by José Adorno, 9to5Mac

The problem is if you just want to get close to a subject with your iPhone 13 but don’t want to activate macro photography, this is not possible as of right now.

iOS 15 Removes Do Not Disturb Option That Silenced Notifications Only When iPhone Was Locked, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

There is no equivalent setting in Focus Mode, so there’s no longer an option to receive notifications when the ‌iPhone‌ is unlocked and silence them when it’s not in use. With Focus Mode, it’s an all or nothing experience - notifications are being received, or they’re silenced in all situations.

Also Updated

watchOS 8: The MacStories Review, by Alex Guyot, MacStories

watchOS 8 has plenty of small iterative improvements, making it the best watchOS update to date. While I’m pleased that I can say that, I still wish I could shower it with praises for some bigger, more interesting new features. While it may be a mostly mature operating system, I still think it’s far from done. Time will tell, but hopefully Apple agrees.

Apple TV Gets 16 New Nature Themed Aerial Screen Savers With tvOS 15, by AppleInsider

Like past updates, the latest Aerials includes imagery of scenic landscapes, presented in dramatic high-resolution glory motion for maximum effect.

On Security

New macOS Zero-day Bug Lets Attackers Run Commands Remotely, by Sergiu Gatlan, BleepingComputer

The bug, found by independent security researcher Park Minchan, is due to the way macOS processes inetloc files which inadvertently causes it to run any commands embedded by an attacker inside without any warnings or prompts.


Apple's Claris Launches Smart Pack To Help K-12 Schools And Libraries Reduce Administrative Demands, by Bradley Chambers, 9to5Mac

Apple subsidiary Claris has announced the release of CF Records Manager. It’s an app created to help K-12 schools and libraries meet the requirements of a new $7 billion federal program to support remote learning.

Bluebird Brings Together A Focus Timer And To-Do App To Help You Accomplish More, by Brent Dirks, AppAdvice

Combining a focus timer and to-do app, you’ll start by entering the app’s focus timer in one of three ways. You can set a timer and name the task you want to accomplish. When finished, the task will appear on a to-do list which celebrates the effort and makes it easy to start the same task again.

Google Apps Gain New Focus Mode On iOS 15, by Satsuki Then, SlashGear

With Focus mode, when users are trying to work using Google apps, notifications are made as relevant and timely as possible, meaning some notifications are muted. One example is when navigating using Google Maps. Google promises that Focus mode will still offer users notifications when they need to turn or if a change has occurred along the route.

Safari Keyword Search Hits 2.0, Comes To iOS, by Dan Moren, Six Colors

Safari Keyword Search is a little tool that allows you to define shortcuts for searching specific sites. For example, you could type “imdb George Clooney” to be taken directly to the IMDb search results for George Clooney, or “w iPhone 13” to go straight to the Wikipedia page for the iPhone 13.


Apple Is Working On iPhone Features To Help Detect Depression, Cognitive Decline, by Rolfe Winkler, Wall Street Journal

While prior academic studies have shown some evidence that people with certain mental-health conditions use their digital devices differently than others, it remains to be seen if reliable algorithms can be created to detect the conditions, according to researchers.

Proper diagnosis of mental-health conditions and brain disorders typically requires close observation by specialists, but many people have no access to such specialists. Researchers working with Apple hope their work leads to a widely available alternative.

Leaked Apple Training Videos Show How It Undermines Third- Party Repair, by Matthew Gault, Motherboard

iFixit CEO Kyle Wiens said the training videos marked a distinct change in how Apple handles independent repair. “It sounds to me like they’re coming to grips with reality,” Wiens told Motherboard. “This strikes me as the kind of thing they should have been doing all along—educating their technicians that there is competition in the market and that they need to compete on the quality and merit of their repair rather than the monopoly practices they’ve been using.”

Bottom of the Page

I didn't install any of the Apple's beta operating systems during the beta period, but I did keep up in reading about the whole Safari's redesign saga.

Then, today, I installed Safari 15 on my Big-Sur Mac.

Oh boy.

I don't know perhaps it's the newness (to me), but if Apple's goal is to reduce the chrome and make the web content stand out more, then it failed. My eyes kept being drawn to the tab-bar the entire day today.


Thanks for reading.