Even though the iPhone 12 might not arrive until jack-o-lanterns start appearing on people’s doorsteps, we already know an awful lot about Apple’s plans. Most notably, there will reportedly be a fourth model this year joining the fray to expand the sizing options, with a new 5.4-inch model rumored to slide into the low-end slot and the flagship model expected to grow to 6.7 inches.
However, even with bigger screens and a switch away from LCD on all models, Jon Prosser reported late last month that prices aren’t going to change all that much:
- 5.4-inch iPhone 12: $649
- 6.1-inch iPhone 12: $749
- 6.1-inch iPhone 12 Pro: $999
- 6.7-inch iPhone 12 Pro Max: $1,099
Those prices mean you’re going to be getting more screen for the same amount of money with the Pro models, a better display for just $50 more than the iPhone 11, and a new lower starting price for budget-conscious buyers. On its own, that would be impressive, but the new iPhones are also all rumored to come equipped with 5G modems that will presumably support both T-Mobile’s sub-6GHz and Verizon’s mmWave networks.
Apple would be well within its rights to charge more for a 5G iPhone. Just this year, the Galaxy S20 and OnePlus 8 Pro jumped by hundreds of dollars compared to their prior LTE equivalents, with the S20 climbing to a whopping $1,600 for the highest configuration. Assuming the iPhone capacity pricing stays the same, that’s $150 more than an iPhone 11 Pro Max with the same 512GB of storage. And the 8 Pro was the first OnePlus phone to cross the thousand-dollar barrier.
So why isn’t Apple increasing its prices like its Android peers? We all know that Apple loves its 38 percent profit margins, so it’s not about to take a hit on its biggest-selling device just to be nice. Rather, a combination of timing, smarts, and Apple’s longterm strategy is about to pay off in a big way.
Ready-ish for prime time
When Samsung and others launched the first 5G phones last year, all eyes turned to Apple. But when the iPhone 11 came and went with nary a mention of 5G, it shouldn’t have been a surprise. Not only were the first 5G phones big, expensive, and subject to overheating, the networks that they connected to were unreliable and limited. Apple rarely dives into new tech before it’s viable, and when the iPhone 11 was in development, 5G was anything but.
That’s changed over the past several months. While the effects of the coronavirus pandemic have delayed the rollout, the major carriers all have decent 5G maps across the U.S., with T-Mobile (and by extension, Sprint) boasting coast-to-coast coverage and Verizon expanding to dozens of cities and larger venues. But 5G deployment still pales in comparison to LTE. So even they opt for a 5G plan, most iPhone 12 users will still be using LTE.
So Apple won’t be charging its users a premium for a service that they’re not even going to use. 5G is nice in theory and there’s something to be said for future-proofing, but Android phone makers are basically gouging their customers by adding a feature they don’t need, won’t really use, and might not even want. When the 5G iPhone launches at the same price as the 4G iPhone, the S20, OnePlus 8 Pro, and every other 5G Android phone that launches between now and then is going to seem even more overpriced than they are now.
Qualcomm’s double-dipped chips
It might seem that Samsung and OnePlus are taking advantage of their most loyal customers, but the pricing for their 5G phones aren’t entirely their fault. The top-of-the-line Android phones all use Qualcomm’s latest high-end Snapdragon processor, and this year’s 865 price has entered the stratosphere, according to phone makers.
When asked why the Poco X2 used a Snapdragon 730G chip rather than the Snapdragon 865, general manager Manmohan Chandolu had this to say: “Chipsets right now, all 800-series chipsets, are extremely expensive. And [the Snapdragon 865], being the first 5G generation, is just a lot more expensive.” And there’s a catch. While the 865 is a 5G-generation chip, there isn’t a modem integrated into it for the first time since the Snapdragon 810 in 2015. On top of that, Qualcomm has made it so the two pieces—the Snapdragon 865 and the latest x55 5G modem—need to purchased together even if the phone isn’t a 5G one.
In addition to the inherent higher price, there are also extra engineering expenses. External modems need more space for proper heat dissipation to run properly even if they’re not connected to 5G networks, so phones need to be bigger to accommodate it. And since external modems are less power efficient than integrated ones, internal parts need to be completely retooled to make room for it. Add all that up and you’re getting a phone that’s way more expensive to build.
The iPhone 12 won’t have that problem. For one, Apple makes its own system-on-chip, so it doesn’t rely on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon. For another, it’s been making iPhones with external modems for years, so it’s well aware of the power and heat needs. Even if the x55 5G modem costs more than the Intel XMM7660 in the iPhone 11, it won’t be anywhere near the exorbitant increase Android phone makers are seeing.
Apple can absorb the 5G increase easier than Android phone makers and deliver 5G to all phones at the same time without needing to up the price or relegate it to pro models. It’s a strategy of patience and proprietorship that has long served the iPhone well, but it could give Apple an even bigger advantage with 5G.
Saint John Kindergartners Head To Super Mario World – country94.ca
Two kindergarten teachers at Hazen White-St. Francis School earned an inclusive education award for turning their classroom into Super Mario World.
Ellen Higgins and Rhonda Magee based their lesson plan on the popular Nintendo video game franchise. They work with students to set individual goals, then the five-year-olds watch as their characters progress along the board as they meet their learning goals.
The pair were among 13 recipients of the National Inclusive Education Award presented by the New Brunswick Association for Community Living.
Higgins says rather than earning a reward for topping the class, the purpose of the game is to encourage students to move forward at their own speed.
“We have five-year-olds running into the class, begging to work on their goal and move up a level, which we’ve never seen before,” she said. “They truly have developed a growth mindset and are in charge of their own learning. It’s really exciting.”
The classroom has done away with prizes and stickers. Instead, the game is built to motivate children to learn, as opposed to providing a reward at the end of the class.
She says by not rewarding students there is no jealousy or hurt feelings. The children are equally excited by their friend’s progress as their own.
“With this system, everybody feels success and pride in themselves, which is paramount to viewing yourself as a lifelong learner,” said Higgins.
“They’re not relying on getting a toy, or extra recess time. They do it because they want to do it. It really creates great habits for them.”
The Saint John region was well represented among the 2020 award winners. Sheryl Titus in Quispamsis, Wanda MacDonald at Champlain Heights School, and the welding faculty at NBCC Saint John were also recognized.
Teaching at a high priority school like Hazen White, Higgins says it’s critical for teachers to ensure their students’ diverse needs are met in the classroom.
“It’s really up to teachers right now to make sure that everyone’s needs are getting met,” she said. “Involving the students in that is the best way to do it.”
Crossword for Friday, Jun. 5 – Brandon Sun
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Vancouver's Cibo Trattoria and UVA Wine and Cocktail Bar announce new head chef – Eat North
After weeks of planning and anticipation, Vancouver’s Cibo Trattoria and UVA Wine and Cocktail Bar recently announced the addition of new head chef Jesse Zuber, and are both set to reopen their doors for dine-in services today.
Chef Zuber, best known for competing on Top Chef Canada and helming the kitchens at Ayden Kitchen and Bar and Saskatoon’s Little Grouse on the Prairie, has developed new dinner, lunch, and weekend brunch menus for Cibo that embrace the restaurant’s traditional rustic Italian cuisine, while maintaining the B.C.-born chef’s affinity for seasonality and local ingredients.
“It’s a bit of an odd time to start a new position, but I’ve been so impressed with the amount of passion on display here and the breadth of talent from the front of house to the kitchen and bar,” says Zuber. “I’m so thrilled to be a part of this amazing team and we can’t wait to welcome old friends and new acquaintances back to our dining room.”
At UVA, chef Zuber and his team will provide a select menu of bites and small plates to complement the downtown Vancouver wine and cocktail bar’s award-winning cocktail list and cellar of Old- and New-World wines.
Both Cibo and UVA plan to employ stringent health and safety standards, including the use of personal protective equipment and social distancing measures.
Reservations for Cibo can be made via OpenTable or by calling the restaurant, while UVA will accept walk-ins only based on availability.
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