The iPhone 6 Dilemma

You may have read the title of this post and assumed I was debating whether or not I should upgrade to the iPhone 6, but that isn't the dilemma at all. I am genuinely excited about the new hardware as well as iOS 8. The dilemma is deciding which screen size to get because in all honesty, I want something in the middle. The perfect size for me would be 5.1" which happens to be the same size as the current Samsung Galaxy S5 which my wife has. I still use a wide array of Apple products so I am not ready to jump ship and convert to Android just yet... With that said I have been spending the afternoon some what (or completely) like a crazy person holding these cutouts up to my ear and manipulating them with my hands. Pretending to text, swipe, call, etc in an effort to determine which size I want. Short of going in after they are in stores and playing with one this is about the closest I can get to seeing how it would be to jump from 4" to 4.7" or 5.5".

Consumption is an obvious win for the larger device but I also think that apps like Garage Band, iMovie, Keynote, etc are going to be made infinitely better by the increased screen real estate. I am also hoping that the typing experience is enhanced with the larger screen. As far as downsides go, will the iPhone 6 Plus too big to comfortably text on with one hand? Will it fit in most cup holders? Do I need new jeans? Is Apple going to start selling larger hands if needed? So many questions!

Obviously I could answer all of the questions above by going into a store after the release date but I have a feeling that sales will sky rocket after the first day they hit stores. Because there are so many unanswered questions about the two sizes I think pre-orders will be lower than ever leaving lots of room for those who decide in the next couple of days.

Google+ Thoughts and Review

I have been using Google+ for about two weeks now and I have to say I am really impressed with the service. There are a few things that I want to highlight because in my opinion they are what make G+ great. The first is the integration with Gmail. Not only do you see a handy little notification icon in the top right but you can add/remove people from circles right from the notification box, comment on posts, mute posts and pretty much interact with everything that you are involved with on G+ right from the notification window.
Google+ Notifications   Google+ Notifications

The next "game changer" for me is Google Hangout. This is by far the best video chatting experience I have had online and aside from it not being available on some mobile platforms (yet) I have no reason to use Skype ever again. Hangout supports up to 10 people communicating via video with the ability to share links (via the chat feature), watch Youtube videos and share other content. It is the best implementation of this type of technology that I have ever used and I can already see a lot of cool ways to make use of it.

Google Hangout

I am a big fan of using lists on Twitter and without them I really couldn't consume data nearly as effectively as I do. Google+ takes this a step further with their implementation of circles. Circles serve a number of purposes: they allow you to organize people into groups as well as enabling you to target exactly who sees what content. This means you can view content posted by people in a given circle as well as share content with people in a specific circle or circles. This is great when you have a question about something specific to a given area or topic if you have a circle that is made up of people in a specific area/region or who share a similar interest you can easily target only those users. I really think the intuitive and useful nature of the way circles work is what sets G+ apart from Facebook when it comes to consuming and sharing content. Google+ Circles

I know it is a fairly new service so the novelty has not worn off for most users yet but the level of engagement that I have seen on Google+ is astounding. In the last week the #1 traffic source to my site has been Google+. This is really surprising when you consider the fact I have ~170 people following me on G+ and nearly 850 on Twitter. The G+ community is highly engaged and incredibly active.

If you want to add a redirect to your website that takes people to your G+ profile you can easily do with a quick .htaccess modification. If you visit http://104.236.173.199/+ you will be taken to my G+ profile. The implementation may vary depending on how your server is configured but all I added to .htaccess was:

redirect 301 /+ https://plus.google.com/profile_id_goes_here

My hope is that the high level of activity and interest continues on G+ and that as more people start using the service things will continue to evolve and scale. At this point the response time on G+ is exceptional and I expect Google is intentionally doing a somewhat phased rollout in order to ensure that things continue to scale and perform at a high level.

All-in-all, I am a big fan and highly recommend checking out Google+.