Apple announced the iPhone 11 lineup earlier this week. All three models — the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and iPhone 11 Pro Max — have a new camera system that the company is really proud of — rightfully so. The example shots (though cherry-picked) looked great, and even the example night mode photo that showed up on Twitter looks like Apple has caught up to Google’s Pixel camera.
Apple kicked off the iPhone event by talking about services. Apple Arcade is a monthly subscription service — just $5 a month for the entire family — and it gives you access to games across your Apple products. Pay each month, and game as much as you want; it launches with iOS 13 on Sept. 19. Then, there’s Apple TV Plus, launching Nov. 1. It’s also $4.99 a month, but if you buy a new iPad, iPhone, Apple TV or Mac, the first year is on Apple.
Besides sharing the stage on Tuesday, what else do the improved camera, countless mobile games, and a catalog of TV shows and movies have in common?
They all take up precious storage space on our mobile devices, and yet, every single iPhone 11 model starts with 64GB of storage.
When Apple first switched from 16GB to 32GB, then eventually to 64GB of base storage for iPhones, it felt like that amount of space would always be enough. It’s probably how original iPhone users who purchased the 2GB model felt when 8GB and 16GB models became commonplace.
But for the last month, I’ve been fighting to keep enough free space on my 64GB iPhone XS Max so that I can download updates, or even take photos. I don’t have thousands of songs from my Apple Music library downloaded, nor do I have shows from Netflix saved for offline viewing. My iMessage history takes up some space, as does my iCloud photo library — but that’s supposed to be smart and manage its own storage allotment.
Admittedly, I’d like to have more songs and podcasts downloaded for when I travel, and binge-watching a Netflix series on a flight would be nice. But, right now, it’s not even an option. And it’s all because 64GB just isn’t enough.
It’s not enough right now, and it certainly won’t be enough once I start putting the iPhone 11 Pro’s new camera to use. And then there’s Apple Arcade. If I’m going to pay $5 a month for access to video games, the last thing I want to worry about is having to manage storage on my iPhone to play those games.
Samsung just launched the Galaxy Note 10, and it starts at 256GB of storage, for the same price as the iPhone 11. That’s four times the amount of storage, again, for the same price. If you want a 256GB iPhone 11, you’re looking at an additional $150. I get that upselling is the name of the game here, but Apple can surely figure out a way to up the base storage without passing on the difference to the consumer. I’m not even saying that the iPhone 11 should start at 256GB. At the very least, Apple should double the base storage amount to 128GB.
I preordered an iPhone 11 Pro Max this morning and begrudgingly went with 256GB of storage, and I’m not happy about it. But what can I do?