Since Apple’s official unveiling of the iPhone 14 range has not yet settled, several of the announcements caught us off guard. Although I’ll reserve my opinions on the Apple Watch Ultra for another time, I do have some thoughts on it. Instead, I’m going to discuss a few features that the iPhone 14, namely the Pro and Pro Max, “stole” from earlier Android devices.
Dynamic Island from LG V10
The debut of the Dynamic Island along with the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max was perhaps the announcement made during Apple’s “Far Out” event that sparked the most heated debate. Since the release of the iPhone X, everyone has been requesting that Apple remove the notch, and they have finally done so. Although it’s still present on the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus, it makes sense from the standpoint of Apple wanting to provide a feature that sets its non-Pro and Pro models apart.
While the Dynamic Island may appear to be a ground-breaking new feature, LG actually arrived first with the LG V10, despite the fact that this is accurate to some extent. LG introduced the “Second Screen,” which allowed users to read incoming notifications, make shortcuts for contacts, and control any music that was playing without using the primary display, in an effort to provide users a another method to interact with their alerts.
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It was one of those instances where LG tried to do something different, but the overall implementation and lack of support doomed the Second Screen from the start. The LG V20 kept the Second Screen around, providing essentially the same implementation, but it was still met with mixed results. Some V20 owners found this to be extremely convenient, while others found that “it doesn’t really add much to the experience.”
Apple’s implementation of Dynamic Island merely operates in a completely different manner as opposed to introducing a new screen. The “Island” will display “Dynamic” information, such as the song’s album art, when you start playing music and quit the app. Additionally, instead of taking up your full screen for simple notifications like when FaceID is required, it turns them into a drop-down image tied to the Island.
Although Dynamic Island isn’t an identical copy of LG’s Second Screen, it’s very obvious that there is some inspiration.
Hole-punch selfie camera
Speaking of the notch, we were aware that Apple wouldn’t use it indefinitely. It was only a matter of time before the company made the “revolutionary” decision to use a hole-punched selfie camera cutout. Apple had to alter the modules it uses because of the different sensors that are integrated into the notch, and there are actually two cuts. The selfie camera is in one, while the proximity sensor and other Face ID-related components are housed in the other.
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With the Huawei Nova 4, the first business to completely do away with the notch, Huawei introduced the hole-punch selfie camera. However, it has been more difficult to find a smartphone that doesn’t include one since then. Many of the top Android smartphones are included in this, including the Galaxy S22 series, Pixel 6, ASUS ZenFone 9, and others.
Apple is obviously falling behind the curve here, as a few phone manufacturers are starting to adopt an under-display selfie camera. Notably, the Galaxy Z Fold 4 and ZTE Axon 40 Ultra are two of the most recent models with a UDC; nevertheless, it wouldn’t be surprising to see further phones produced in the near future with such a change.
Consider how long Apple has taken to provide a feature that it ought to have done years ago. Android phones have long had the Always-On Display (AOD), which allows users to quickly and easily see the time and any unread alerts. Following the announcement of iOS 16 and the addition of lock screen widgets, the writing was already on the wall.
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Then, one of the iOS 16 Developer Beta builds kind of let the cat out of the bag when several users discovered that the UI on their iPhone lock screens was unfamiliar. In actuality, Apple was simply putting the software in place to support the Always-On Display.
In true Apple fashion, this isn’t available on all four iPhone 14 models, as the AOD is reserved solely for the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max.
Dynamic Refresh Rate
It’s still remarkable that Apple waited so long to implement quicker refresh rates and dynamic refresh rates considering how long Android users have enjoyed this privilege. ProMotion was created because we anticipated Apple would substitute “dynamic refresh rates” with some fancy marketing word. The iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max from last year were the first devices to feature this, but they could only refresh the screen between 24Hz and 120Hz.
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Apple decided it was high time to slow things down even further with the release of the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max with the Always-On Display. With its ProMotion display, the iPhone 14 Pro range can now dynamically refresh the screen all the way down to 1Hz instead of bottoming out at 24Hz. Since stale content doesn’t need to be refreshed as frequently, the obvious benefit is to prevent battery drain anytime the AOD is shown on the iPhone.
Due to the LTPO display, the OnePlus 9 Pro and Oppo Find X3 Pro were two of the first smartphones to provide dynamic refresh rates between 1Hz and 120Hz. And as you might anticipate, this has appeared on additional gadgets, like the Galaxy S22 Ultra and the current generation of iPhone 14 Pro models.
Car Crash Detection
If you were able to endure the full “Far Out” event, you might have become weary of the numerous commercials showcasing the positive effects the Apple Watch and iPhone have had on people’ lives. One new feature, though, is something that everyone should be grateful to Google for introducing with the Pixel back in 2020. As part of the March 2020 Feature Drop for owners of the Pixel 2, 3, and 4, Car Crash Detection was initially integrated to Android.
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The many motion sensors and ambient sounds on your Pixel phone were used to make this feasible. Your phone can sound an alarm in the event of a car mishap, prompting you to decide whether you require additional assistance. If no response is given, emergency services will be contacted and their location will be given by your Pixel.
Apple is adding this to all of its iPhone 14 models, but the Apple Watch Series 8 is also the first wearable to do so. Apple has updated its three-axis gyroscope and combined it with a “high g-force accelerometer” that can measure up to 256 gs of force to enable this. Once an algorithm has determined whether an accident has happened, the iPhone and/or Apple Watch will inform emergency contacts and services if no answer is received within 10 seconds.
In June 2022, it was discovered that the Car Crash Detection feature might not be exclusive to Pixel phones for much longer. Hidden code within Google’s Personal Safety app suggests that this functionality could make its way to other Android phones in a future update. But at the time of this writing, it looks like Google and Apple will be the only phone makers with this available.