In one week we got Apple’s coming out party as a services company and Huawei trying to snatch back the camera crown. Let’s break it down.
That’s more like it…
My biggest criticism of the excellent Mate 20 Pro was that Huawei abandoned the monochrome sensor. Since first introduced on the game-changing P9, Huawei (and Leica) leveraged the added details captured by the secondary sensor in strikingly unique ways. And then they thought that the tech had run its course and stripped the soul from its camera system.
The P30 and P30 Pro have been given a light touch of that magic with the all-new RYYB sub-pixel arrangement. Replacing the Green sub-pixels with two Yellow ones means that they can still replicated the colour pallette, but can now also capture more subtle lighting details because the yellow doesn’t filter out as much as green. It will be interesting to get the standard P30 to test alongside the Nokia 9 PureView in the ultimate computational photography battle, since both are also packing Time of Flight depth sensors.
Yes, there’ll be a lot made about the telephoto camera and its up to 50x zoom capability, but that’s just icing. I’m interested in the actual sponge cake. Big batteries and edge-to-edge screens round out the rest of the spec list, but there’s no real difference from the Mate 20 Pro beyond the new cameras.
The very sensible pricing is also something to get excited about, especially in the age of 20K flagships. Cellucity is listing P30 Pro at R16 000, the P30 at an incredible R11 500 and P30 Lite (shares only design language and a selfie camera with its more premium siblings) at R5 500
The all-new Apple, now with extra Oprah
As a South African it was very difficult to get excited about Apple’s latest announcements. Yes, we’re finally getting the Apple TV App and (eventually) access to the Cupertino company’s latest Apple TV+ subscription service. That was literally it.
Apple News+ is rolling out in developed countries that have a large appetite for magazine subscriptions. And I don’t forsee our banking regulations letting the credit card into the country without a fight – look how long it took Discovery to get its service off of the ground. Although, my iStore card has been rejiggered into a standard BlueBean arrangement, so maybe there is hope on the horizon.
Okay, back to Oprah and Apple TV+. Damn she can sell Apple devices. She literally stood up and said that Apple can get her into a billion pockets around the world. And that’s the big play here. If every Apple device user in the world signs up for just one of these new services and pays $1 per month, that more than makes up for the losses in iPhone sales and will make investors VERY happy.
Apple can’t wow us with hardware anymore and is now finally diversifying it’s portfolio in a meaningful way. Privacy and inclusion (as long as you can afford the buy-in) is what they’re selling in exchange for your money. Oprah and Steven Spielberg are just the marketing.