5 Things That Aren’t Intuitive or Necessary About iOS7

Whenever there is an Apple software update or a new phone coming out, it is all I can think about, talk about, dream about…you get the picture. So on Wednesday when they were releasing the new iOS7, it wasn’t even a question that I was going to download it as soon as I could. So I obsessively checked my software updates all morning until at 12:55 PM EST I saw I could update. Luckily within about a half hour I had the new software (I say luckily because most of my friends couldn’t download it until much later).

So I started playing around with it…seeing what was new, what was the same, and I noticed that a lot of the commands I had grown used to were a lot different. In fact, I couldn’t even figure out how to do a lot of things until I Googled it. It was surprising considering Apple is known for creating software and products that you can just figure out – it is engrained in our nature. Also, there were other parts that just are slower. For someone like me who is constantly multi-tasking and looking to get things done as quickly as possible, it was a bit disappointing. So here are some things that may help you as you learn the new iOS7 software.

#1 Closing Apps

We have all grown to love (or maybe just me) how easy it is to close apps to help your battery life. It is the same as deleting apps from your phone so it is easy. Well, I am a chronic app closer. I probably close my apps at least 10-15 times a day. So when I went to do that on iOS7, I was searching for the little x to close our the app, and it wasn’t there. So I tried touching the screens, holding them down (both which opened the apps), and I ended up needing to look up how to actually do it. Turns out, you have to swipe the screen shot of the apps toward the top of your phone screen.

Swiping Apps to Close

Swiping Apps to Close

P.S. This is my first plug for Yahoo Weather. More to come.

#2 Finding The Search Bar vs. The Notifications Bar

With the numbers of apps I have, I tend to constantly use the search box of the phone. But when I went to swipe toward the left, I couldn’t do that. So after playing around some more, I found that when I swiped down on the home screen, I was able to access it. However, there were times when I would swipe down and get the notification bar, and then there were times I would wipe down and get the search box. WHAT WAS GOING ON!?

So after some searching online, I found that if you swipe from the top of your phone down, you will get the notifications tab. I do like that it is now organized to show you calendar on one tab, all of your notifications on another, and missed notifications on a third. +1 Apple. Then when you touch anywhere else on the home screen and swipe down you can access the Search bar. Much more efficient, but still surprising that it wasn’t as obvious.

Home Screen:

Home Screen(Second Yahoo Weather plug above)

Search Bar:
Search Bar

Notifications Bar:

Notifications Bar

#3 Calendar App

I really love the calendar app. And I heard there was going to be updates and wasn’t so sure how I felt about that. Well, turns out, I’m not thrilled. I’ll get used to it, but I’m still not thrilled. The app is a bit difficult to navigate. Sure they now have the yearly, monthly, and daily view that is a more accessible, but the design and layout doesn’t seem as user friendly as it used to. For instance, I want as much space to be dedicated to showing me what’s on my calendar for the day. But the view of the week gets in the way. Oh well, I’ll manage. But some of the features are just not as user friendly as I was hoping. I will say though that I love that there is a whole tab of the notifications bar dedicated to the calendar.

Year View:

Year ViewMonth View:

Month ViewDay View:

Day View

#4 Zooming In & Out

I love flashy new features. Let’s admit it, they are exciting. But after having iOS7 for a few days, I just wish it would get to the command a bit faster.

For instance, when I unlock my phone, it takes a bit longer to do the fancy zoom feature. It reminds me of the PowerPoint animation where the words would fly in. Definitely a cool animation, but as we got older, we stopped using it because you just needed to get to the content of the presentation. The same goes for when you are opening an app. Cool zooming feature. When you close the app. Cool zoom out feature. Exciting the first few times, but after awhile, just not efficient.




#5 Folders

There’s nothing I love more than organizing my apps into folders (it’s what you get when you have a Type A personality). I also liked when Apple limited the number of apps you could have in a folder. Because let’s be serious, you aren’t really using as many apps as you have. But now when apps are in folders it takes a bit longer to get to them.

First you have to open the folder (which takes a bit longer with the whole zooming thing).

Food Screen 1

Then you have to swipe to the right if the app isn’t on the first page.

Food Screen 2

Then you open the app (and the zooming commences).

It’s just a bit more work than necessary.

Yahoo Weather App Plug

Time to divert our attention for a second to an awesome app. After looking at this post, you may have seen the Yahoo Weather app on the home screen. This app completely took me by surprise and is actually the best weather app I have seen (and definitely in my top 10 favorite apps).¬†Let’s look at the functionality…

First, easy to add locations and integration with other Yahoo products (which you see I don’t use), but definitely good to have.

Yahoo Weather App 1

Beautiful picture of Boston that shows what it is like when it is partly cloudy. When it’s rainy, there is a picture of Boston that is rainy. When it is sunny, there is a picture of Boston when it is sunny. And the pictures are never the same. Awesome.

Yahoo Weather App 2

Now of course the current weather, hourly weather, and weather for the week (available in 5 or 10 day increments).

Yahoo Weather App 3

Now some more details about the current weather, and what it will be like today and tonight. Then the map that shows the current weather (very helpful when it’s about to rain).

Yahoo Weather App 4

And finally information about rain, wind, pressure, and the sunrise & sunset. More awesome information.

Yahoo Weather App 5If you are not downloading the Yahoo Weather app now, let’s change that ūüėČ

So back to iOS7, what other changes do you think aren’t intuitive or necessary?


50 Reasons I Love My iPhone

  1. When I tell Siri I love her, she tells me “You are the wind beneath my wings.”
  2. The battery life is a champ. ¬†I don’t need to charge it all day long like I did with my Android.
  3. I can move and delete my apps effortlessly.
  4. The camera is incredible.
  5. There’s an app for that. It’s actually true.
  6. I FINALLY have access to the “iPhone only” apps.
  7. I can group my apps into categories (love this about Apple).
  8. Find my iPhone. Need I say more?
  9. It is simple connecting to wifi.
  10. The GPS is 1000x better than my old Android GPS.
  11. When I type in a contact’s name, it pops up immediately (definitely did not have that on my last phone – the delay was very long).
  12. iMessage is AWESOME.  Such an easy way to talk to other iPhone users.
  13. Auto correct is REALLY good (it even knows to capitalize the “S” in HubSpot).
  14. Pocket MBTA – it actually tells me exactly how long it will take until the next bus arrives.
  15. It’s white. I’m a sucker for white phones.
  16. It syncs with my iPad and Mac. Thank you Apple; thank you iCloud.
  17. Privacy. Every time I have to open the App Store, it asks for my password. I like that I am the only one who will be able to download apps.
  18. The QR code scanner works.
  19. All it takes to clear my apps is double clicking the home button and deleting the apps currently running.
  20. All it takes to mute my phone is clicking a button. Literally one button.
  21. You can record much longer videos.
  22. All the Apple cords are the same to charge my devices.
  23. Getting the iPhone makes me look like this: 
  24. I get to have a Timeline that looks like this: 
  25. Facetime. I absolutely love Facetime.
  26. I have a camera on both sides.
  27. My apps don’t have to “force close” constantly.
  28. Downloading more apps doesn’t make it slower.
  29. If something happens to my phone, Apple Care will give me a new phone for $49.
  30. Posting pictures right to Twitter ACTUALLY works.  (Note the pattern of things ACTUALLY working on the iPhone)
  31. The phone automatically shows my updates.
  32. Siri recognizes my location and will tell me places that are nearby.
  33. Siri knows me by name.
  34. The notifications for Twitter come immediately.
  35. Streaming videos on YouTube is quick and easy.
  36. Flixster will find movies near me by location.
  37. I will get Foursquare updates before the Android and Blackberry users.
  38. My phone’s apps are¬†sleek¬†and organized.
  39. The games I paid for on the iPad are now on my iPhone.
  40. I’m finally part of the cool kids club (by having an iPhone).
  41. Deleting emails takes a second and does not have any delay.
  42. I can put as many accounts as I want in my apps.
  43. Siri can easily bring up my schedule for each day.
  44. I can simply tell Siri to text someone, give her the message and it sends.
  45. Running one app doesn’t kill my battery.
  46. I have many choices for accessories and apps.
  47. When I have notifications and my screen is locked, I can swipe the app icon across the screen to immediately go to that app.
  48. I have a pull down on the phone of all my notifications.
  49. When I pay for an app, it is worth the money.
  50. Did I mention I’m REALLY excited about having an iPhone?
What’s your favorite part? ¬†Have any unboxing videos to share?

Super Bowl 2011 Advertisements

The entertainment during this year’s Super Bowl may have been unsuccessful, but at least the advertisements were great (well some of them)! ¬†Between Christina Aguilera forgetting the words to the National Anthem and the Black Eyed Peas having a total fail for a performance, the advertisements may have saved the Super Bowl (not including the actual game, of course). ¬†Below are my thoughts/reactions to some of the commercials that stood out (either positively or negatively).

First Quarter:

Bud Light: I usually don’t enjoy the Bud Light commercials. ¬†They are normally the same thing: Person 1 is just SO excited that they have a Bud Light, and their entire LIFE is now better. ¬†It is always the same exact thing. ¬†The first commercial was the same theme as well. ¬†BUT the second Bud Light commercial was a change from before AND for the better! ¬†Bluntly incorporating product placement into Super Bowl ads, one of the biggest opportunities for product placement was genius and funny too. ¬†Having a medieval play with random Bud Light product placements…genius…just genius.

Doritos: The first Doritos commercial was pretty elementary, but they definitely made up for it as the commercials continued. ¬†The third commercial with the chip’s crumbs bringing everything back to life was pretty entertaining, and kind of creepy when it brought the kid’s grandfather back to life. ¬†But still a bit more creative than the usual “DORITOS ARE JUST THE BEST” mentality.

Pepsi Max: Now I’m not a huge Pepsi fan (which would normally mean I wouldn’t write about it on my blog), but I have to mention the Pepsi Max commercial with the geek being made fun of by the “pretty, popular kids.” ¬†Definitely entertaining watching the kids get shown up by the geek and his cool gadgets/toys. ¬†Ya gotta love how nerdiness is the new “cool.”

Bridgestone: Kudos to Bridgestone! ¬†I think you tapped into every person’s fear of hitting “Reply All” by accident and sending an e-mail out to many people who were not supposed to read it. ¬†I’m sure everyone has done that once or twice. ¬†Granted, Gmail has an “Undo” button now, but what about those e-mails you don’t realize you sent for awhile? ¬†But anyway, Bridgestone just related to EVERY person who has ever sent an e-mail. ¬†Great job, great ad.

Go Daddy: When I first started my blog, I used Go Daddy. ¬†That year when I saw the Super Bowl commercials, I was so excited because not only did I use this service, but their commercials were so creative! ¬†That being said, that time has certainly passed with the¬†abysmal showing from them on this year’s ad.

Second Quarter:

Coca-Cola: Everyone expects the polar bear in these commercials, especially if the commercial isn’t going to be something unique. ¬†I hate to say it because I am TOTALLY brand loyal to Coke, but this commercial was lame. ¬†It was the same commercial they have ALWAYS had but with dragons, warriors, whatever they were. ¬†I was hoping for something at LEAST as creative as their “Open Happiness” campaign. ¬†I hope they bring something better a bit later.

Volkswagen: This ad was great. ¬†The little boy trying to have Star Wars powers was absolutely ADORABLE. ¬†I have nothing much to say besides good job, Volkswagen. ¬†You got everyone’s attention in a positive way. ¬†No complaints here, and I haven’t even heard any complaints on Twitter (which is even more impressive)!

Snickers: What was that? ¬†Like seriously…you went from Betty White to that? ¬†It wasn’t funny this year, and I stopped watching before I even knew it was a Snickers commercial (I only saw people tweeting that it was a Snickers commercial). ¬†Not impressed.

Chevy: If you wanted to get the attention of any advertising and PR people, well you did it.  There are no complaints from this group as Facebook is more than an addiction Рit is a way of life.  The tweets after this commercial were beyond excited as they saw the best possible scenario: driving AND having Facebook statuses read aloud.  Great job, Chevy.

Carmax: This was a commercial that definitely got an “LOL” out of me. ¬†I had never even heard of Carmax before, but it definitely made a lasting impression on me. ¬†Very catchy commercial, and definitely kept my attention the entire time. ¬†“I feel like a kid in a candy store…” ¬†Beautiful start!

Staples: When you think of Staples, you think of the “easy” button and the silly “That was easy” line. ¬†I think Staples did a really great job of showing their products while still maintaining their brand image with the easy button. ¬†Very nicely done.

Third Quarter:

Etrade: Let’s just put it this way, you can never go wrong with a talking baby. ¬†They will be funny no matter what.

Best Buy: Great line: “What’s a Bieber?” ¬†I have nothing against Justin Bieber. ¬†Personally, I think he is a great kid and very talented. ¬†BUT it was a great way to get some attention for Best Buy by making fun of him.

Groupon: I am a big fan of Groupon.  Love the company, love the deals, love just about everything.  But I think they could have been a bit more creative with these advertisements.  They seem to be making light of serious situations around the world.  And while I sort of see their point, I just think they could have been more creative.

Chrysler: Using Eminem in this commercial was perfect. ¬†“Lose Yourself” playing in the background was a great addition. ¬†The brand was prominent, everyone’s eyes were interested in Eminem (especially since his appearance in the Brisk commercial wasn’t too exciting) and Chrysler got their message across. ¬†Their cars were branded as cool, luxurious and made for a star.

BMW: Who doesn’t like game shows? ¬†And who doesn’t love FUNNY game shows? ¬†“Cram It In The Boot?” ¬†Who thinks of something like that? ¬†But it was complete genius. ¬†It was funny, got the attention of America who loves game shows and showed the purpose behind the commercial: the fact that this car has more trunk space and can really fit all your¬†possessions. ¬†Great use of strategy and humor.

NFL: This was one of the greatest ads I have ever seen.  It may not have been the funniest or best at promoting a product, but it was certainly the greatest ad of the night.  Watching all of the different shows celebrate the Super Bowl was fantastic and so nostalgic.  From the older shows like Happy Days, Full House and Seinfeld to most modern shows like Friends and Family Guy, this compilation of shows was truly top notch.

Fourth Quarter:

Bridgestone: Bridgestone has done a great job tonight. ¬†First with the Reply All and then with the beaver commercial. ¬†Great use of a cute animal to get your point across (kinda brings me back to the Geico commercials that I used to look forward to). ¬†But not only is the commercial cute and well received (at least on Twitter), but it really incorporates the car well. ¬†A lot of commercials are cute and use animals that don’t relate as much to the product they are selling, but Bridgestone is able to do both.

Verizon iPhone: I could probably write a full post on this advertisement. ¬†In fact, I will probably end up writing a post about the Verizon and AT&T ads that have been produced since the iPhone was announced on Verizon. ¬†But tonight…tonight this single ad has made my ENTIRE NIGHT. ¬†Not only does it show the¬†sleek,¬†magnificent¬†iPhone, but VERIZON BROUGHT BACK THE “CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW” GUY! ¬†That basically makes all my hopes and dreams come true. ¬†Definitely the best ad of the night. ¬†Perfect advertisement for the Verizon iPhone and PERFECT way and reason to bring back the original face of Verizon with the “Can you hear me now” actor.

And that’s that for this year’s Super Bowl ads. ¬†Congratulations to the Green Bay Packers! ¬†(And me, for picking them to win tonight!)

The Marriage of Verizon Wireless and Apple

On January 9, 2007 the iPhone was introduced on AT&T.  Four years and two days later, Verizon made the incredible announcement that the iPhone will be released on their network starting February 10.

As I said last week, I am very brand loyal especially when it comes to Verizon Wireless. ¬†Yes, I have always wanted an iPhone, but I was NEVER going to consider switching over to AT&T. ¬†Let’s be serious, there is no network that even comes close to being as reliable as Verizon. ¬†Can you hear me now? ¬†Yes, because I have Verizon. ¬†Dropped calls are unheard of on this network! ¬†But let’s get back to what happened today…

There have been rumors for months and months about the iPhone coming to Verizon (if not years). ¬†After all, the iPhone is the phone that single handedly helps AT&T compete against Verizon. ¬†When my phone broke in September (or you could say, drowned in a rain storm), I wanted to wait until the iPhone potentially came out at the beginning of the year. ¬†I even subjected myself to using a Blackberry (see #downwithblackberry) for three long months as I awaited the iPhone. ¬†So when the Wall Street Journal published “Verizon Finally Lands the iPhone” on January 8, I started to take the rumors seriously. ¬†My “Verizon Wireless” Google Alert has been posting stories about the iPhone coming to Verizon for months, but until a reputable source published the story, I was not going to believe anyone.

That’s when my world exploded, and the clues just all appeared. ¬†Fast Company published “Verizon’s iPhone Tomorrow: Everything You Need to Know” on January 10 explaining everything that was going on. ¬†To quickly summarize this article, they displayed the invitation from Verizon to the press event, stated that Gizmodo was not invited (which could possible be due to their disagreement with Apple when they leaked the iPhone 4 pictures) pointed out that Verizon’s official tweets were coming from an iPhone instead of the web and wrote about the design and plan for the Verizon iPhone. ¬†Gizmodo commented in their article “The Verizon iPhone Will Be Announced on January 11” saying they were not invited to the press event even though they are normally invited to Verizon press conferences, but they still love Verizon anyway. ¬†What great sports!

So while I was basking in the glory of all these articles, journalist¬†Jon Swartz from USA Today tweeted “Any Verizon customer who’s been waiting for a chance to buy an iPhone? Can I interview you?” ¬†My fellow Verizon supporter, Jenna Glynn, tweeted back at him saying “@jswartz652 you should talk to @RSprung! She is a Verizon SUPERFAN & tomorrow is her Christmas.” ¬†He immediately got in touch with me, interviewed me and published an article entitled “Would a Verizon iPhone be a hit?” quoting me! ¬†More excitement for my Verizon holiday!

This morning was quite exciting.  I set myself up in front of the computer with multiple websites open awaiting the 11:00 press conference starting time.  Engadget was posting live from the event.  Lowell McAdam, President and COO of Verizon, began the press conference right on time (I really adore him).  Some key highlights:

11:00 am:¬†“Okay, it looks like you’re expecting a big announcement. I don’t think we’ll disappoint. If the press write something long enough, eventually it comes true. We’re very very excited about our announcement today.”

11:05 am:¬†“This is putting us at the hub of the wheel driving this industry. Collaboration is the key to innovation. We’ve worked with partners across the industry.”

And my favorite:

11:06 am:¬†“Today we’re partnering with a giant of the industry, and that’s Apple.”

11:06 am:¬†“Late in 2010 we started offering the iPad… today, we are extremely gratified to announce that the iPhone 4 will be available early next month.”

And some quotes from Tim Cook, COO of Apple:

11:09 am:¬†“Tens of millions of customers have purchased the iPhone around the world. Customers have downloaded billions of apps. I am incredibly happy, and I can tell you all of Apple, is very very excited to bring the iPhone to Verizon’s customers.”

11:10 am: “We’re incredibly pleased to give Verizon’s customers the choice we’ve been waiting for. We’ve designed an iPhone 4 which connects to the CDMA network — and it has all the features that you’d expect. Like FaceTime. Features like Apple’s stunning Retina Display.”

11:11 am: “5 megapixel camera, HD video… the custom A4 chip. But most importantly, it provides an integrated customer experience that’s far beyond what anyone else is providing. From iOS, to iTunes, to the App Store — they’re all designed to work together.

And some quotes from Dan Mead, CEO of Verizon Wireless:

11:13 am: “We’ve built our business on building the very best network — and now our customers have a choice for the iPhone 4 on the nation’s most reliable network.”

11:17 am: “On February 3rd our existing customers will have an opportunity to pre-order… on February 10th, everyone will be able to order online, in stores, or in Apple stores.”

And right as this was announced, the beauty that you see below was updated on Verizon’s website AND Apple’s website!

And Mashable posted “It’s Official: The iPhone Is Coming to Verizon.”

Check out the Wall Street Journal’s great recap (and video) at their article “Verizon Wireless to Offer iPhone 4 in February

I’m expecting AT&T to come out with all sorts of insults about how you cannot go on the Internet while on the phone, but the truth is Verizon is the superior network. ¬†They have the more reliable service. ¬†There is a reason Apple felt the need to bring the iPhone to Verizon customers. ¬†AT&T was unable to fulfill all of the needs of the iPhone. ¬†Enter: Verizon!

And that’s that! ¬†The iPhone 4 will be on Verizon starting February 10, and my entire life is now complete!

What are your thoughts about the release?  Disclaimer: Negative comments are not welcomed on #VZWiPhone Day!

The Power of Apple

A world dominated by Apple products has come before us.  From Mac computers to iPhones to iPods, everywhere you turn someone is using an Apple product.  Whether in the classroom or on the streets, Apple products have become an integral part of every person’s life.  Every person will at some point be affected by the overwhelming influence of Apple on your everyday life.  Even Steve Jobs will find his way in your heart and your home (whether through media interest in him or his products).

AT&T’s move to sell iPhones may have been the smartest decision the company could possibly make.  Not only did revenues skyrocket, but the brand name of AT&T became more common.  Customers switched to their services just so they could have a part of this iPhone fetish.  Verizon may make this smart strategic move as well in the next year (http://atlanta.bizjournals.com/atlanta/stories/2009/04/27/daily5.html?surround=etf).  However, the potential of Apple is phenomenal.

Their techniques to promote the company are unlimited.  From the advertisement shown above in the New York Times showing the iPhone’s infinite tools to YouTube videos such as,http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZxtyxCAxGNE&feature=related, Apple takes every opportunity to demonstrate its capabilities.  Its partnerships with other phone companies are a very smart strategic move to ensure the success and increased publicity within the telecommunications industry.  Additionally, with new and improved iPhones coming out periodically, Apple secures the attention of all its major shareholders.

So what can we learn from Apple?  We cannot create its products.  We cannot compete with its popularity.  What we can benefit from is its impressive techniques to advertise and promote its products, despite its exceedingly high cost, across the country.

Advertising on YouTube

This week, I wanted to reply to one of the comments on the blog.¬† For anyone who has not seen, his question was ‚ÄúHow should people utilize YouTube for advertising – the videos themselves, or just pre-roll and post-roll in-video ads?‚Ä̬† I did a bit of research into the topic on the Internet and came up with many interesting articles discussing the topic.¬† Some people say pre-roll ads are not going to be around much longer, similar to pop-ups on the Internet.¬† Personally, I know that when pre-roll ads are played for me on the Internet, I walk away until the ad is done and then play my clip from its starting point without the ad.¬† However, many people sit through the 30 second clip awaiting their video, and the advertising technique is successful.¬† Even though many people cannot stand this type of advertising, it is definitely effective when utilized.

As for post-roll advertising, I personally do not see the effectiveness of it.  If an advertisement is played at the end of the video, people are simply going to click out of the clip (unless the advertisement does something to REALLY get their attention, but this will only happen once in a blue moon).  If advertisers are going to spend money producing these ads, I would suggest they stick with pre-roll ads.  However, from a consumers’ point of view, I would like the post-roll ad more because it gives me the choice whether or not I want to watch it.  I will not feel pressured to like their product or service because it is my choice whether or not I watch it.  With pre-roll ads, I feel a form of pressure from the advertisements that they are FORCING me to watch this clip.

However, I feel that the most effective form of advertising on YouTube is the individual video clips.  Many companies, such as Microsoft, Apple, Freecreditreport.com, Geico etc. are so creative in their advertisements.  I have looked up various advertisements on YouTube after they catch my attention on television (especially after the SuperBowl).  For example, one clip I recently looked up was Microsoft’s:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DtilWL4mnhI. Not only did it catch my attention and make me smile, but I thought it was a very effective form of advertising.  And no one can forget the Geico Gecko!  When the consumer makes the choice to watch an ad, it will have more of an effect because that consumer has an open mind and truly wants to listen.  When people are forced to watch advertisements and feel pressured, their mind is already closed off to the idea of listening to what the advertisement has to say.  Therefore, my suggestion for all of you advertisers out there: utilize the videos themselves as advertising, or if you HAVE TO, post-roll advertising.