Next In Line: the iPhone 11


On Tuesday September 10th, Apple unveiled the new iPhone 11 among many other new products. During the press event, social media exploded with pictures, videos, and memes of the new iPhone. The new phone is set to have three different stages: iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and iPhone 11 Pro Max. The iPhone 11 starts at $699 and jumps up to $1099 for the iPhone 11 Pro Max. All three phones feature an updated camera system with the regular iPhone 11 consisting of two cameras and the iPhone 11 Pro and the iPhone 11 Pro Max consisting of three. The updated cameras come with “night mode” for low-light settings, front-facing slow motion video, and an upgraded 12 megapixel front facing lens. As stated before, the iPhone 11 Pro and the iPhone 11 Pro Max comes with a newly developed three camera system featuring an ultra wide, telephoto, and regular lens. On top of the new camera system, the iPhone 11 features a new A13 Bionic processor, new phone colors, and an increase in screen brightness.

Besides the iPhone 11, Apple announced a plethora of other new products. Among the new products is Apple’s new streaming service Apple TV Plus, the iPad 7, the Apple Watch Series 5, and Apple’s new gaming service Apple Arcade. In my opinion, I think a lot of these new products are pretty cool. I am excited to see Apple’s new streaming service, especially because it is said to be in direct competition with Disney’s new streaming service Disney+. It will be interesting to see what movies and television shows will be included in the streaming service. I am also pretty excited to see what Apple is going to do with Apple Arcade. It’s going to be hard to get a ton of people to switch/pay for their gaming service because of the already popular consoles like Xbox, Playstation, and the Nintendo Switch, however it will definitely be an easy sell for video game fanatics. It will be interesting to see the way Apple markets the product, how they develop it in the future, and how original/unique/addicting their games are. If they intend to have games like the new Mario Kart apart of the subscription, I will definitely pay the extra money to play. All in all, even though Apple didn’t release any news about a game-changing product, it is still a pretty cool update from the multinational technology company.



Is Threads the next big thing?


Recently, news has surfaced that Facebook is testing a new Instagram app titled Threads. The news surfaced after Mark Zuckerberg announced that Facebook is planning to shift users away from private messaging, among various other privacy changes. The app is designed to be used alongside Instagram and invites users to share various personal details with “close friends” including location, battery life, speed, text, video, and photo messages. The app constantly updates these various details and once users opt-in, Threads regularly updates their status for them. Users’ status updates will be showcased in a feed with a green dot showing which users are currently active. If the app is released to the public, it could be seen as a competitor to Snapchat as the picture messaging app already allows users to share their location, pictures, and videos with “close friends”.

Even though it is not currently released to the public, Threads raises various security and privacy concerns. Not only will the app give Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg a constant stream of personal data on its millions of users to analyze and mine, but it also normalizes the practice of sharing personal data. Sian Brooke, a researcher from the Oxford Internet Institute, states that, “You change your behavior if you’re constantly being looked at. If you know people see where you are, what you’re consuming, you’ll change what you’re doing, change what is normal in a group”.

In my opinion, I think the app sounds a lot like other apps that are already released and would need to have something unique that would set itself apart from other popular apps like Snapchat. Even though users would have to opt-in to the automatic updating features, I think that it restricts users’ privacy and would contribute to the normalization of sharing personal data/information. It’ll be interesting to see if the app ever gets released and what the app will “officially” contain. If Threads ever gains as much popularity as Mark Zuckerberg’s other apps, automatic personal data sharing could become the norm.