When Apple announced the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro, they announced a new line of accessories called MagSafe alongside the flagship phones. One of the MagSafe accessories is the Leather Wallet with MagSafe. This wallet has been getting heat ever since.
Things got worse when tech reviewers on YouTube started reviewing the wallet, and their videos started to appear on the world’s largest video platform and appeal to their fans. The words silly and misleading are the only two words I can describe these reviews.
All the videos are the same. Reviewers are trying to put their iPhones with the leather wallet in their pockets, and the magnetically attached leather wallet falls off. All the tech reviewers agreed on one thing: Using the Leather Wallet with Magsafe is not safe, and it will drive you mad because it would always fall off your phone every time your phone moves towards your pocket — especially if you like wearing skinny jeans.
As if no one in Apple tested the Leather Waller with Magsafe with skinny jeans before the wallet was released.
Today, I went to the Apple Store while wearing skinny jeans, and guess what? I put the phone and took it out of my pocket at least 20 times without the Leather Wallet with MagSafe falling a single time. What was I doing differently, you may ask? I wasn’t intentionally trying to make the wallet fall in pursuit of internet clicks and views.
This dilemma didn't start with the MagSafe accessories. It is a problem that I’ve seen in tech review videos for years now, but reviewers never went this low. They never forgot how to put stuff in their pockets before.
The root cause of the problem
I can’t pinpoint exactly when this problem started; however, bendgate played a huge role in it.
If you are not familiar with bendgate, the term “bendgate” refers to the 2014 iPhone 6 Plus controversy, where consumers alleged that the phone would bend in their pockets.
Unbox Therapy uploaded a YouTube video titled “iPhone 6 Plus Bend Test” in 2014. In the video, Hilsentenger used his bare hands to bend the iPhone 6 Plus. Within a couple of days, the video was watched tens of millions of times. Today, the video has been watched over 73 million times — It is the most popular video in the tech review niche.
Tech reviewers noticed the success and growth of Unbox Therapy after bendgate, and the unofficial race to be the first to highlight any tech-related controversy has begun — Even if there was no controversy to report.
It is not just a wild accusation; I have the proof too. It became popular on YouTube to ridicule Apple’s every new release. Sometimes, reviewers have valid points, yet not thought thoroughly. In other cases, it is a clear attempt to mislead the public to gather clicks and views. my examples are:
- Face ID
- The Notch
- iPhone 12 with no power brick
- Leather Wallet with MagSafe
For someone who lives in a cold country, I wouldn't say I liked the Touch ID. That thing does not work if you have gloves on. For a tech reviewer who lives in California, this might not be an issue, but gloves are essential to the overall attire for the rest of us living more towards the north.
When Apple announced Face ID, I was thrilled. Finally, a very responsive way to unlock the phone. It is so responsive that I can unlock my phone while wearing a baseball cap, sunglasses, or a winter hat. And in 2020, my phone even unlocks if I have a facemask on — It doesn't unlock if I have sunglasses and a mask on or if I have a hat and the mask on.
It even unlocks the iPhone if I have a 6-month-old beard or completely shaved.
I never had a problem with Face ID while I had multiple problems with the Touch ID. Tech reviewers insist on having Touch ID for no apparent reason whatsoever; their only argument is that other smartphones have an under the screen touch sensor.
Yes, other Apple devices have Touch ID, and they should. Those devices are not smartphones designed to be used almost every hour of every day in every weather. And there is no reason to have Touch ID and Face ID on the same device. If you don’t want to use Face ID, type your 4 digit passcode — Easy, isn't it?
Let’s be clear; the notch gives the iPhone a distinctive look. It works in favor of Apple’s unique branding strategy.
The notch houses multiple cameras, sensors, a speaker, a microphone, among others. It is necessary for Face ID to work.
Newer smartphones do not have as many sensors in the front as the iPhone; they merely include a front-facing camera. The facial recognition on these devices works via an algorithm that compares your facial features to a visual model you create while setting up the phone. It is not as secure as Face ID. Such a camera can be hidden easily. For example, Xiaomi patented an under the screen camera.
Tech reviewers hate the notch on the iPhone. The notch is a design necessity for the iPhone, and with slight innovation, Apple can easily get rid of it.
Nevertheless, the notch is not as bad as reviewers want you to think. It, in no way, interferes with video watching or general phone functions. Actually, a dot in the middle of the screen is more irritating than a notch on the side, which does not affect the smartphone's basic function.
The holy war on the notch is meaningless.
Apple knows that Siri cannot compete with Alexa or Google Assistant; they are late to the market. Therefore, Apple focused on sound quality. The HomePod’s sound quality is unbeatable.
Alexa can learn new skills from the thousands of skills available, and Google is doing amazing steps with its assistant year after year.
Siri, on the other hand, is good at basic functions. Depending on how many Apple services one uses, the Siri experience can differ completely. For example, if you use Notes, Calendar, or Apple Music on your smartphone, Siri on the HomePod will manage these Apple services for you.
Tech reviewers will use sentences like “The HomePod is the stupidest smart speaker,” and they are right. But let’s look at this objectively.
Amazon and Google are service providers while Apple isn't — They just started to venture into services. Therefore it is no secret that Alexa and Google Assistant are better than Siri. But let’s be real — and that is what the tech reviewers missed — who uses the smart speaker in their homes for more than basic functions? Functions that Siri is more than capable of handling.
We own a smart speaker for 5 years now. We only use it for music, timers, and to manage the Phillip hue lights in our living room. And there is a high chance that you are doing the same thing too if you own a smart speaker.
I don't want Siri to read my calendar for the entire house, nor do I ever want to use the drop-in function on the Echo. And if I want to tell my wife that I’m on my way home, I’ll write her a text.
Tech reviewers imagine improbable scenarios and base their review and videos around these scenarios. This is very distant from reality. The average joe will never be in such a situation.
Also, to use the HomePod, one must own an iOS device and be involved in the Apple ecosystem. whereas you can own an Echo or a Google Nest regardless of which smartphone you own — I hope they consider this in their reviews.
iPhone 12 without a power brick in the box
In January 2020, the EU lawmakers voted for new rules to establish a common charger for all mobile devices. The idea is to ensure that EU consumers are no longer obliged to buy new chargers with each new device — Basically, the EU paved the way for Apple to get rid of the power adapter.
Apple did criticize the EU plans for a common charger. But they failed to persuade the EU otherwise. Apple has to adapt.
So, my dear tech reviewers, I believe you should be aware of such laws in the EU. In fact, it is your job to know the laws that affect new tech. However, in your pursuit of clicks and views, non of you mentioned this new law, and I understand why. It is not interesting to report that Apple followed the law; it is better to report that Apple is greedy.
Leather Wallet with MagSafe
Even though reviewers want you to think that the leather wallet falls off the iPhone every time it comes close to a pocket, The reality is far from it. The wallet attaches perfectly fine and can’t be shaken off. Today I was able to insert the iPhone 12 Pro with the wallet into my skinny jeans' pocket multiple times without a single problem.
But the reviewers showed us a different story. In their videos, the wallet fell out of their pockets every time. How can you explain this?
Easy. I wasn't trying my best to make the wallet fall off. Peter McKinnon's review of the Leather Wallet with MagSafe came to the same conclusion.
One cannot imagine buying a new tech device without watching a couple of review videos first anymore. However, tech reviewers are going out of their way to create the next bendgate — even though it does not exist.
I’m not defending Apple. I acknowledge that Apple had its shares with controversies such as bendgate, death grip, and the butterfly keys fiasco. However, reporting on an actual problem is totally different than reporting on nothing for the sake of views and clicks.
My advice for the tech reviewers: learn how to put a phone correctly into your pockets, please!
Walid Al Otaibi -WAO- is a top writer in Gaming and Technology. He works at an engineering company in Germany. He comes from a multicultural background and is located in Germany since 2003. He is writing about Arab Culture, Multiculturalism, Finance, and Trending topics.