The iPhone 5 is meh

The iPhone 5 is a big disappointment. After an eternity – or at least it felt that way – of building up anticipation, Apple unleashes a phone that doesn’t do much to improve the previous version, but does a lot in terms of screwing loyal customers over.

I am, of course, talking about the new connector.

The iPhone’s ridiculously low batt mileage has driven me to buying at least four chargers, one car charger, and one hybrid batt pack. All of which , if I choose to buy the iPhone 5, will now have to be replaced or – the slightly less odious alternative – fitted with adaptors, reportedly retailing at more than 20 dollars a pop.  Good job, milking me for more money, Apple!

And are the new features worth the added expense and hassle? They don’t seem to be.

A larger screen does what, for instance? I mean aside from making the phone more unwieldy and looking like an Android device. It’s thinner and lighter, you say? For real people, that only makes the phone harder to handle, unless of course the only time you take out your phone is when you’re sat at a Starbucks sipping your overpriced coffee. Try using a phone that thin and light while being jostled around on a bus, or while trying to hang-on a struggling kid in a mall with a sale on toys. As it is, a lot of people feel the need to bulk up their iPhones with clunky protectors – yes, Otter, I’m looking at you – and you’re gonna go with a phone that’s even thinner and lighter? Seriously.

Oh, what about the shared photostream? Great. Brilliant, even. Just what we need in this age of drunken texts, pervy self-shots, and all around douche-ness with cell cameras – an easier way to fuck yourself up. Thanks a bunch.

On the homefront though, has taken it upon itself to toot Apple’s horn. Reading more like a paid advert than a serious report, Spot’s iPhone article panders to the consumeristic idiocy of most people my generation and younger. Articles like this are the reason why Filipino sites like Spot are difficult to take seriously. In fact, no. It’s the reason why the entire media industry in the Philippines is hard to take seriously. Without exception, Philippine media caters to the lowest common denominator – the thirst for consumerism, the hunger for scandal and politics, and the absolute lust to be little brown — well. There is space for that rant somewhere else.

In any case, the bottom line is that the iPhone5 is meh, at best. If you have a 4S, then you have enough. If you’re looking to get a new smartphone, Samsung’s offerings are much better. And if you don’t care either way, here’s a picture of a cat.



The right stuff

Erin DiMeglio is Florida’s first female high-school quarterback! It’s amazing, it’s history-making, and it makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

But it’s also time to get over it!

The kid has skills and she should be given the opportunity to prove exactly how bad-ass those skills are, instead of being patted on the head for being a girl who can play with the boys.

In the meantime, though … WOOHOO!

Sex on the beach

Apparently, people in my neck of the woods tend to get jumpy when people decide to take a tumble on the beach This time, the beach in question is Puerto Galera – a kind of B-grade vacation spot for people who can’t afford places like Boracay.

Oh wait, the people who find the randy couple don’t seem to mind all that much. After all, how often do you really stumble upon a truly instagram-worthy moment in today’s over-documented world. I’ve seen – and posted – enough pictures of artistic cappuccino foam swirlies, thank you very much. Gimme some nice soft-filtered porn once in a while and I’ll thank you for it. :)

The people who really get upset are the ones who’ve only heard tell of the seas-side nookie – either by word-of-mouth or on tv. Either way, I suspect that at least part of their agitation has to be from the disappointment that they didn’t witness the deed themselves.


Potted Terrific

I’ve always been a major fan of improv, and improv was exactly what elevated Potted Potter from kitschy to kick-ass.

Admittedly, I didn’t have high hopes for this show. I mean, two white guys riffing on a YA book about depressive boarding school teens beset by a nose-less psycho? How funny could that be? Plenty funny as it turned out, and mainly because the act  was relentless both in poking fun at the serious bits of the book and in playing up the exciting parts. QUIDDITCH!

In truth, the act was so improvisational that it could have been born in the common room of a frat house, with all the attendant whooping, vaulting over furniture, and make-shift props. Even better, it was peppered with enough pop-culture references that even the hipsters in the crowd were cheering. That’s a big thing, btw, since I can’t imagine anything more mainstream than a piece of work that has achieved commercial success in both its major incarnations.

Of course, because of the sheer volume of material that had to be crammed into the act’s run-time – “Seven Books in Seventy Minutes!” – a lot of artistic license had to be taken. An example would be the omission of many characters, despite those characters being both pivotal and immensely entertaining in the books and films. Loony Lovegood for instance, was nowhere in sight, as were … well, I don’t want to give too much away. The deviations from the books, however detracted not a bit from the over-all entertainment delivered by the energetic players.

Bottom line, Potted Potter was a hilarious experience, well worth the effort of going to see it.

Samsung chokes on Apple

So it looks like Apple got a ruling that Samsung violated many of its patents, including those involving user interface, such as bounce back scrolling and gestures. These patent violations were found in a large number of Samsung products – some you’re familiar with, like the Galaxy Tab and the Galaxy S; and some you might not have even heard of, like the Mesmerie or the Infuse. Well, at least, I’ve never heard of them.

Of course, this ruling doesn’t spell the end of this tussle. Samsung has said that it would appeal. But in the long run, the repercussions of Samsung choking on Apple are wide ranging and, ultimately, not that beneficial for the garden variety consumer.

As CNET reported Samsung’s official statement:

 “Today’s verdict should not be viewed as a win for Apple, but as a loss for the American consumer. It will lead to fewer choices, less innovation, and potentially higher prices. It is unfortunate that patent law can be manipulated to give one company a monopoly over rectangles with rounded corners, or technology that is being improved every day by Samsung and other companies. Consumers have the right to choices, and they know what they are buying when they purchase Samsung products. This is not the final word in this case or in battles being waged in courts and tribunals around the world, some of which have already rejected many of Apple’s claims. Samsung will continue to innovate and offer choices for the consumer.”

In the meantime, it isn’t that difficult to imagine Apple’s legal eagles high-fiveing each other with their now golden hands.