The launches of iOS 7, the iPhone 5S (S meaning, “This should have been the iPhone Six”), and the iPhone 5C (C meaning, “Could we call this one the iPhone 6?”) have dominated the tech news for the last week. In fact, they are quite literally the only stories in the tech news; headlines range from “iOS 7 cures all Internet Explorer viruses” to “iOS 7: This story is actually about the Xbox One but we knew you’d never click the headline unless it began with iOS 7.”
As you probably know, the iPhone 5C/S/I: Miami and iOS 7 do have a number a new features. For example, you can now unlock your phone with your fingerprint. Rumor has it that the upcoming iOS 7C will allow you to unlock your phone using your DNA-verified snot.
But what the new Apple products don’t do is perhaps more telling than what they can do. Sure, you can now take higher-resolution photos, but nobody cares if you Instagram a picture of a 6 megapixel pair of shoes or an 8 megapixel pair of shoes. No, what we really need are some teen-specific features that would vastly improve the experience of all iPhone users:
Of all demographics, teens seem to have the biggest problem with autocorrect. Perhaps it’s because we text the most. Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that most of our abbreviations resemble DNA sequences, like “gtg,” more closely than words. Or perhaps it’s simply that teenagers send off texts without re-reading them to catch any errors, and often even send off texts without reading them a first time.
The point is, autocorrect plagues teen society like no other technological invention, save maybe whatever technology creates dubstep noises. As such, I think Apple should consider adding the following feature:
Whenever autocorrect acts up, you would immediately have the option of sending a follow-up text message via a pop-up selection list. Depending on the magnitude of the autocorrect error, you could choose from messages ranging from “Sorry, Autocorrected” to “OH MY FREAKIN’ GOSH that was Autocorrect WHAT THE TARTAR SAUCE I’M GOING TO HAVE A COW I’M SO MAD I COULD EAT A HORSE OLD MCDONALD HAD A FARM EURO. I MEANT EUROPE. I MEANT E I E I O. Go die, autocorrect.”
An Effective Wake-Up Alarm
By now, if you don’t assume that all teenagers are sleep deprived you are either: a) not a teenager or b) a teenager who is so sleep deprived that you forgot what a teenager is. So, if we are to get to school on time, we obviously need a very powerful alarm clock, a parent strong enough to drop us down the stairs, or an arrangement with the local air force base to create a sonic boom at 6:20 AM every morning.
A lot of people, however, simply use their iPhone’s alarm. Generally, people set between two and eight alarms, because they know that the first one will not be enough to wake them up.
But since we know that is the case, why not create a default alarm app that is actually effective enough to wake a sleeping teenager? Sure, it might take a few (read: thirty-seven) years to develop, and a few more years (read: never) to get FDA-approval, but it would save you the hassle of having to set six alarms every morning.
Basically, it would sound your classic iPhone “bum bum bum, bum bum bum-bum-bum-bum” but it would steadily get louder and louder until it set of all nearby iPhones, which would steadily get louder and louder until they set off all nearby iPhones, until every iPhone on the planet and the six or seven that an angry Bill Gates has hurled into orbit are going off. If the combined vibration and sound of six million iPhones are not enough to wake you up, you might as well stay asleep; the planet can only withstand thirty seconds of mass-iPhone bombardment until the crust shakes apart and the atmosphere crumbles.
Sure, a shattered screen is a lot less common today than it used to be, probably because either Apple has built tougher iPhones or consumers realized that, unlike the cellphones of the ‘90s, when you had to throw them into a wall to make them work, there’s nothing you can do to make a modern phone not drop calls, so you might as well save your strength.
But, nonetheless, teenagers still commonly break their iPhone screens. Undoubtedly, this is our fault; perhaps we chose to keep it in our shallow athletic shorts pocket as we played basketball on a cement court or accidentally (or intentionally) mistook our neon-phone case for a tennis ball. Regardless of why our iPhones still break, though, Apple could save us all a lot shattered glass if they built an indestructible screen.
The question is, why haven’t they done this already? I would assume it has something to do with the fact that to make true shatterproof glass would involve increasing the thickness of the glass, ruining the design aesthetic. But do you care how pretty your iPhone is if the screen is unusable? Of course not; we’re teenagers (when do we ever sacrifice function for looks, right? Certainly not when it comes to how we wear our backpacks).
Thus, Apple should create a version of the iPhone with 5-inch bullet-proof, shatterproof, drop-proof, hammer-proof, dog-bite-proof, karate-chop-proof, trash-compactor-proof glass. As an added bonus, if anyone ever tries to shoot you in your mid-thigh for some reason, your iPhone can now deflect the bullet.
Sure, we can keep talking about how stunningly wonderful the new iPhones and operating system are (“Breaking: iOS7 wins 5 Emmys”), but let’s not forget about what technology should always strive to be:
intelligent enough to take over the human race an improvement over the previous model. I, for one, eagerly await my exponentially louder alarm.
September seems to be a month for us to propose improvements; last year at this time we brought you “Designing a Better Inside Cover for Textbook.”