Next Week Apple Announces its New iPhone 6S and 6S Plus. I’m 26 years old and for the first time since since 2007, I find I’m not scouring the internet for specs or information leaks, not plugging in my headphones while wondering how many times I’ll be refreshing various Apple news searches before an update flickers across the screen.
The first MacBook was released my senior year of high school. Freshman year of college, the first iPhone hit the market, and by the time I graduated University, finding a classmate without a MacBook or iPhone seemed a Herculean task. With innovative design, powerful performance, and the ability to look cool on the internet, we millennials were easily wrapped around Apple’s finger.
Growing Up With Apple
I witnessed Apple undergo massive technological transformations at a time when I myself was undergoing massive transformations. I began school imagining I wanted to be a manager and graduated with a degree in sound design and composition. Apple evolved with me as I switched from spreadsheets to staff paper.
I went to an art school where technology was a massive component to our work. While I advanced in my curriculum and began undertaking more demanding and complex projects, Apple was developing products powerful enough to keep up with my wandering mind. I’d start any given semester with an idea for a new design but without the technology to support it. By the end of said semester, Apple would have a product capable of what I was looking for, whether that was Logic Studio Pro, the “aggregate device” feature in system preferences, or Boot Camp, which allowed me access to the archaic Windows-based CAD software my University hefted upon its students.
Apple’s Waning Generation
As a business owner I certainly have different demands from technology than I did as a student, but the amount of processing hasn’t changed. It’s the same level of dependency and yet, I am not leaving wishing I could have downloaded that image faster, located that restaurant on maps quicker, or taken that picture with better clarity.
It’s no shock we are dependent upon consumer tech. But is there a ceiling? When is an update to an existing form no longer the answer to company growth?
Is there a moment when we’re satisfied with the devices we own? When everything from taxi cabs to food delivery have been successfully shifted from the 20th century into the digital app era, is there a moment when all life monitoring from GPS to smarthome to smartcar to smartair have been integrated into a single piece of hardware?
We’ve been with the iPhone for over 8 years now. Come September 9th, the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus will come with a bunch of upgrades and features that we’ll desperately need. It will push the envelope of what a mobile device is capable of. But do we need a new iPhone? Do we need a new mobile device?
While it’s true that with each update, the iPhone improves its microphone software and voice call quality — a direct effect of the increasingly loud and noise-filled world we subject our ear drums to on a daily basis — the shape and construction of its microphone has remained untouched throughout its lifespan.
Not everything can be solved with software. Acoustic pressure waves are acoustic pressure waves and there’s no way of shrinking them before they hit a microphone’s diaphragm. The size of a microphone directly effects its recording quality. The current iPhone mic design shows a blatant lack of care. Stereo audio has been around since the 1950s, shouldn’t we have that capability on our smartphones? Part of the genius behind Apple’s innovative products is that they’ve empowered consumers to demand better visuals, better user experiences, and better connectivity. With such impressive advancements in these fields, it’s time Apple abandoned their belief that mono audio is enough. It’s time to empower consumers to demand better sound.
From One Ear To Another,