News digest №67. Chasing two hares

You can't please everyone, but you still really want to. Original solutions in the new Sony smartphone, dreams of 'fat' iPhone and the need for updates to new OS versions …

The past week turned out to be interesting, only the IFA exhibition and the company's presentation Apple are worth something. For those who have not followed the IFA events, I recommend that you familiarize yourself with the exhibition navigator.

News digest №67.  Chasing two hares IFA 2015. Exhibition navigator

You can never please everyone. No matter how talented an artist or musician may be, there will always be those who do not perceive his work at all. No matter how convenient the device is, there will always be those who will not like it. I believe that the comments on the article about the new iPhone, which by this time should already be published on the main page of MR, will be a prime example of this.

Somewhere deep down, any person really wants to please others. Moreover, almost all indiscriminately – men and women, children and adults, relatives and complete strangers. To be the smartest, bravest and most beautiful in the eyes of others is much more pleasant than looking like a fool or a clown. Someone pays more attention to this, someone less, but no one remains absolutely indifferent to the opinion of other people. Another thing is that any adult understands that it is not only completely unnecessary to please everyone and everyone, but it is impossible for nothing. And he tries to divide all opinions into important and not so important, listening to the first, and ignoring the second. The same words spoken by a loved one and a casual passer-by will be perceived in completely different ways.

Companies in this respect are not much different from people. None of them are delighted with the criticism of users on social networks or caustic articles of journalists, but they are also in no hurry to rush to redo everything or sprinkle ashes on their heads. Any product has its own target audience, the company will really try to take into account the opinion of these people. And there is a non-target audience, which, of course, would also be nice to like, but only if it does not require too much sacrifice from the company.

A classic example is updating an old device to a new OS version. At first glance, everything here seems to be unambiguous – the more updates there are and the faster they come out, the happier customers will be. Refusal from the upcoming updates will only provoke a wave of criticism on the Internet and the outflow of users to another brand. But if you dig a little deeper, it turns out that for most buyers this is not particularly important. And the release of each update for the company is not free at all – it is not only the hours of the programmers' work, but also potential problems with the operation of the updated device. Sometimes long-term support of the device is justified, sometimes not – and hysterics on the forums have practically no effect at this moment. 'Geek' Vasya can threaten a large company as much as he wants by abandoning its products forever, and at the same time taking all his friends to competitors, in most cases this is no more scary for a manufacturer than a mosquito bite for an elephant.

By the way, at the moment the picture of OS fragmentation looks like this:



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It is pointless to discuss this or that device parameter in isolation from everything else. In a protected phone, a capacious battery is a definite plus, and it doesn't matter that it will add a couple of millimeters of thickness to it. Exactly the same battery in a fashion phone can completely kill its sales – the target audience of such a device will never agree to exchange a thin and stylish device for a weekly 'brick'.


Often, what you and I think is completely stupid and illogical is a conscious choice of the manufacturer, which he makes, carefully weighing all the pros and cons. Whether he will be right in the end, it will be possible to understand only by sales, and not by moans on forums and tantrums on social networks.

Although it is still sometimes a pity that the development of the apparatus did not follow the path we would like. Especially when he has no alternatives as such.

It was once believed that iPhone works many times longer than any Android smartphones. This was partly true – the OS from Google itself was quite crude at that time, and there were simply an unimaginable number of people willing to release cheap devices on it. These smartphones had a whole bunch of problems, and the battery life was not the worst yet.

Now on this front Apple there is not much to boast about, and primarily because she herself (like most other smartphone manufacturers) does not particularly strive for this. Everything is at the level of competitors – but no more.

Meanwhile, many fans of the 'apple' company are very sad about the old days, when the thickness of the smartphone was not at the forefront. And I must admit that I understand them perfectly.


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For comparison, the first iPhone had a thickness of 11.6 mm, while iPhone 6 'thinned' to 6.9 mm. Despite the difference of half a centimeter, the battery life of the device practically did not change, which seems to be a good result. Just leave it in the company the same thickness as the first model, it would fit a battery with a capacity of 6,576 mAh instead of 1,810 mAh, which is installed in it now. It would have turned out something like this.


For me personally, this would be a very significant argument in favor of 'apple' products. However, about the same can be said about any Android flagship.

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How do you know which opinions to listen to and which not? In theory, this is determined by specialists within the company. In practice, the opinion of marketers does not always coincide with reality. It is not difficult to say that from now on the company is targeting the premium segment, but users may have a fundamentally different opinion on this matter. Having set a price for the new smartphone similar to Vertu devices, the hapless manufacturer will very quickly lose its old audience, but will not acquire a new one. In this sense, changing horses on the crossing is generally risky.

That is why I do not really like what they are trying to do at Sony, where, on the one hand, they cling to old fans with all their might, on the other hand, they try to reorient their devices to a new audience. And so far this is most like the very attempt to please everyone and everything at once, which is obviously doomed to failure. This is most noticeable on the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium smartphone, which theoretically should return the Japanese company to its former glory.

Quite standard, already slightly sore design. For those who don't follow the company's smartphones too closely, they all look the same, it is almost impossible to distinguish one device from another. At the same time, Sony emphasizes that this device is special, it surpasses all previous models by a head, this is a real technical revolution. Of course, the corporate identity is sacred, and it is not customary to update the design of devices nowadays every year, but I do not think that the owners of iPhone 6 would be very happy if from the outside it was indistinguishable from iPhone 4. Moreover, it would have a positive effect on profits Apple.


The main feature of the smartphone is considered to be the 4K screen – a truly unique solution, there are no analogues now. But will this delight ordinary store visitors? How many people will refuse to buy iPhone or Galaxy, seeing this line in the list of characteristics? Yes, people are accustomed to the fact that more is better, but they did not start reading the characteristics of the screen. It's not super bright AMOLED, which a couple of years ago went crazy even for those who did not understand the types of displays at all. This is just an incomprehensible word that does not affect reality in any way. It is impossible to understand what it means just by looking at the display; it could just as well have been replaced with any sonorous marketing term. All this is filtered out by the majority of people just on the machine; in our age of general advertising, it simply cannot survive otherwise.

Geeks, unlike ordinary buyers, are well aware of how 2K differs from 4K, and they may well appreciate all the 'coolness' of such a solution. Unfortunately, along with this they can appreciate its complete uselessness today. And the point is not even that it is redundant, it is simply practically not supported by anything. Stretching a FullHD or 2K picture into 4K won't make it better even if you study it under a microscope. Moreover, it is very likely that the smartphone itself will switch to a kind of analogue of the FullHD mode in many situations – in any case, this is the conclusion made by the journalists of GSMArena, having examined in detail the prototype that fell into their hands. The pixels in it are arranged in such a way that they can easily be grouped into larger structures that completely copy the arrangement of pixels in FullHD screens. Although so far all this is only an assumption, it is very plausible.



Of course, there are those who at first glance will see all the coolness of such a solution, will immediately recalculate all the pixels, determine their size and calculate ppi. Just like we used to distinguish between sub-pixels in AMOLED high-resolution displays, for example. Did this hysterics hinder sales of Samsung flagships? Even at a time when, if you wanted to, you could really still see something?

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The situation with the processor is exactly the same. There is the same infamous Snapdragon 810, from which everyone has already got it. What is the point in such a decision? Most buyers either did not hear anything about it at all (how many are interested in the models of mobile processors?), Or out of earshot heard something negative (thanks to Sony's predecessors, the topic of overheating of this solution appeared on the pages of specialized resources with enviable consistency). Regular readers of these same resources know perfectly well what is what, and are unlikely to become euphoric at the mention of it. There are only a few people who will buy a smartphone for the sake of a processor, and among all layers of potential buyers.


In general, the benefits of such a solution are very vague, but the problems are quite real. The prototypes that fell into the hands of journalists quickly overheated, the inscription 'the application will be closed due to overheating' caused a real shock for many. Yes, one can hope that all this will have nothing to do with commercial devices, only miracles do not happen. And if you step on the same rake for the tenth time, they will hit the forehead no less hard than the first time.

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Of course, Sony will try to come up with something. The most obvious option is to lower the processor frequency, which many other companies have come to. But, apparently, Sony decided to do it their own way and here – it looks like the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium will not only be the world's first smartphone with a 4K screen, but also the world's first phone to use thermal paste.


Perhaps this can also be considered an achievement?

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I would like to stress once again that, in my opinion, it’s not even a specific component, but the overall picture. All companies sacrifice something, no one forgets about marketing, everyone rushes to increase the quantity where it would be better to think about quality. And any announcement of any company always collects thousands of dissatisfied comments from users from all over the world, without this there is no way. But here it is simply not clear why this is happening, whom the company is trying to impress with such solutions, whom it considers the target audience of its new smartphone. Trying to chase two birds with one stone, while still not parting with any two chairs, Sony is very much at risk of being left with nothing. Maybe Apple Samsung can still fool around for a couple of years, gradually eating up the credit of buyers' trust, but for the Japanese company the time of idle life is clearly over long ago. And she still can't get away from a stormy vacation and remember who she is and what her name is. And still hopes this crazy tea party will last forever.

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