Financial Mail: I of the beholder (iOS10 review)

Screengrab of Financial Mail websiteAlmost every week of the year – and for several years running – I have written a technology or consumer product review for the Financial Mail.

I loved working for the FM when I was a full-time staffer (six or seven years ago now). I first edited the FM Campus publication, and later held the position of Financial Mail online editor. And I love contributing to them as a freelance journalist too. The “Gimme” section, as we call it, is a great space to talk about cool consumer tech and apps, useful business

The “Gimme”, as we call the weekly review article, is a great space to talk about cool consumer tech and apps, useful business software and tools, and share great new finds I come across. Often, it’s the latest smartphone from a big name manufacturer, like Samsung or Apple. Or a sleek new ultrabook  laptop, or giant curved TV. But not infrequently, it’s the “little app that could”, or occasionally something not at all “techie” – like artisanal leather handbags or handcrafted jewelry.

Just in case you’re wondering: these things come to me as review units on loan. No, I don’t keep them  🙂

You can find my reviews in the weekly magazine and on the website. Here’s an extract from a recent iOS10 review I did.


I of the beholder

Last month Apple released iOS 10 — the latest upgrade to the iPhone and iPad operating systems (10.0.2 was recently made available). iPhones from 5 up and third-generation iPads should be able to be upgraded. While there are changes to notification styles and sounds, it is apps such as Photos, Music, Maps and Messages that have changed most. There’s a bunch of new features in Messages, including animated handwriting messages, new display options, one-tap responses, predictive emojis and “invisible ink” messaging. Some of these are obviously gimmicky. But I like that Apple has been so playful in this release. In fact, “more playful” is a theme for iOS 10 — as are “more personal” and “more powerful”.

While there are changes to notification styles and sounds, it is apps such as Photos, Music, Maps and Messages that have changed most. There’s a bunch of new features in Messages, including animated handwriting messages, new display options, one-tap responses, predictive emojis and “invisible ink” messaging. Some of these are obviously gimmicky. But I like that Apple has been so playful in this release. In fact, “more playful” is a theme for iOS 10 — as are “more personal” and “more powerful”.

The “more personal” is evident in the redesigned Photo app. Alongside your albums and photo feed, there is a Memories option that groups images rather intuitively according to dates and locations. In my Memories feed, for example, it has created an album for the trip I took to Nieu Bethesda last year, not just grouping those images and videos, but even auto-generating a charming shareable video of the trip. Maps has also been overhauled, and Siri integrates with more apps than before. The new Home app is a cool space for linking and controlling the smart devices in your home, including lighting, security and appliances.

Of course, you can’t make everyone happy all the time. Many users have complained on social media about having to actually push the Home button to unlock the device with a fingerprint. Sure, it is a tiny niggle, but it does slow down the unlock process. The good news is that you can revert to the previous version, where you rest a finger on the button to unlock the phone.


For the full review, click here.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s