July 24, 2024

Chapter 9 – finally taking the plunge with an apple iphone

June 2024

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On the day before travelling back from Lavarone, Italy, I did a daft thing and left my Vollaphone on top of the top-box on the Guzzi (motorcycle). Of course, it fell off at the next roundabout and was promptly run over by the car behind which broke the display. This was a bit sad because a) a silly thing to do and b) I had built up a good system without google on android and had a dual-boot ubuntu touch system which was beginning to work well. To cap things off, I wrote to the volla company to get a new display and they are currently out of stock and not sure when they’ll be available. This gave me the push to perhaps give an iphone a go!

I had been eyeing up iphones for a while mainly because the camera seems to be very good and I was always a bit jealous of people’s iphone photos which were simply way better than mine with the vollaphone. My oldest daughter had been working on me for a long time to go applewards so I decided to give it a go and have now ordered a refurbished iphone 12 pro max with 256GB.

This post will be a sort of scrapbook dealing with “going iphone” from a background of android and linux-based phones and will be updated as we go. The phone should be arriving at the beginning of the current week so will take it step by step.

I think I will try to keep it simple at the start and resist the temptation to empty the app store onto my device. First things that will need doing will be basic setup, updates and integration of my nextcloud system and various emails into the iphone…

A bit of iphone history 🙂

Here we go:

to continue as it happens 🙂

29th June 2024:

Thus we have started!

“Anything worth doing, is worth doing right.”

― Hunter S Thompson

Sometime earlier this week my refurbished iphone 12 pro max arrived with a blue case and a gorilla glass protector. It is definitely a solid chunk of technology and smacks of quality even without switching it on. Having set up many different devices over the years and decades starting with self-built PCs with Windows 98 through all the variations, in recent years Linux dual-boots and laptops and in the phone-zone numerous androids, degoogled androids and linux-based mobile devices. Thus, the apprehension and joy at the prospect of setting up a new device with my usual functionality and connectivity remained within modest boundaries.

I was absolutely clear that the setting up would be slow and well-considered and certainly not rushed. Basic setup was good with all language and input options available. I first setup the nextcloud in accounts and started integrating it for calendars (CalDAV) and contacts (CardDAV). Probably the main reasons to choose the 12 pro max were the excellent camera and the screen size (due to the usual over 50 problems 🙂 ). One definite finding is that the iphone is a device with massive potential and that I am only slowly discovering its possibilities and ways of using it.

I have a central “cloud” for all devices using nextcloud which is handy and enables iphones, androids, ubuntu touch devices, linux laptops and desktops and even windows PCs to use the same file system. “No file shall be left behind.” It also is the reference file for calendar and contacts and can do more than that, for example, tasks but I haven’t done that yet. I also use Joplin for intersystem notes and this works for all except ubuntu touch.

So back to the iphone. The app store is huge and, of course, dominated by the big hitters. Some apps such as Osmand (which I greatly like) are there but don’t have the free functionality of, say, the f-droid version which is “plus” (unlimited) from day one. I suppose this is fair in that they “robin hood” the users, i.e. taking from those who have and giving to those who have less. This is fine by me and I suppose the iphone crowd is mostly better-off.

Afternoon and evening 29th June 2024:

First serious test of the camera today and I have to say the camera and software are absolutely amazing, the results are stunning and the optical zoom is exceedingly useful, particularly for better framing of portraits. Even as an iphone newbie, I can safely say that the photos are next level! Another very impressive aspect is the battery life and optimisation which gives me easily 2 to 3 days between charges (which is similar to the volla phone 22 btw 🙂 ).

7th July 2024:

Another week with the iphone and still very happy with it. I have continued setting it up in small bursts of activity and have now got the travel apps linked up AND got the nextcloud photo backup working so that it now just works in the background! My minimal banking apps are also up and running so basically most everyday apps are in and running. I haven’t installed Whatsapp yet or, in fact, any meta apps and am trying not to although not having whatsapp is a bit wearing for everyone else. I’m looking for an alternative solution here and will shout up when I’ve got it working.

The camera is still excellent and I’ll post some sample pictures maybe later after a walk in the park. Are there any gripes? Well, not really at the moment. I am missing my ubuntu touch project at the moment but that is no fault of the iphone. When I’ve repaired the vollaphone I shall hopefully get it working again and continue.

I am using OsmAnd maps+ for offline navigation so shall give that a good test soon and will report back. Ice cubes for Mastodon appears to be a bit of a battery hog so am considering switching to something else. Garmin Smartlink works but seems to like lurking in the background so will look into it to see if it’s set up properly.

to continue as it happens 🙂

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The author

2wheels, adventure, ecology, dad and husband, green, news, tech-fan, trauma- and orthopod, engineer and human. https://mstdn.social/@MarkDW

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