iPhone 5S Weekend

Unfortunately, due to a number of factors, there has been an absence in regular updates. However, there is much new content to cover in this bumper post/update!

1. iPhone 5S

Friday 20 September 2013 was launch day for the iPhone 5S (and the 5C, but that’s not really our focus here…). I woke up at the usual 6am time, and no the way to work I dropped by Chadstone half serious about queueing up. At 6:30am, the queue was, by my estimation, ~200 strong. So, I decided to join the queue. My assessment was that given the relatively small numbers, I should safely be able to acquire an iPhone within an hour and still make it into work at the respectable time of 9:30am – 10am at the latest. At 8am, to kick off the launch activities, the Apple Store staff did a lap around the queuing public. The queue moved briskly and at 9am I entered the Apple store. Minutes later, I walked out with not one, but two Space Gray 64GB units!

OK, so I didn’t get to do much with the phone on the Friday itself – see the other sections below for more info. During the course of the day, I managed to come to an agreement where I sold my Dad’s iPhone 4S to a colleague – settlement and transfer would take place after the weekend. I also posted an advertisement on Gumtree for the second iPhone 5S – refer to other section below for further details.

Saturday morning saw me set-up the iPhone fully:

  1. iCloud backup of existing iPhone 5 (8GB required; I guess all the music data is separate from a backup given iTunes Match removes any unnecessary duplication) – this took 1 hour, so I kicked it off ~6am and went back to sleep.
  2. iPhone 5S restoration. Everything was usable within 10 min, although it took another 2-3 hours before ALL apps were fully installed and operational.

Key learning: the use of iCloud backup helped me to identify all apps purchased on previous Apple IDs – I was able to remove them and re-download against my main Apple ID. (Note to self – write-up article on Apple Identities and iCloud).

2. iOS 7

I went through the separate activity of upgrading my (then) current iOS devices to iOS7 in the early morning of Thursday 19 September (AEST time). In summary:

  1. iPhone 5:
    1. The first download failed and reported an error message.
    2. The second download attempt completed successfully.
      This was via WiFi at home and immediately after the first attempt. The install took 30 min and was literally door-to-door from home to work. I put my bags on my desk at work and literally, the phone was ready to use.
    3. No technical glitches really uncovered in the two full days of use
    4. Interestingly, I observe that the iOS 7.0.1 update is not applicable to the iPhone 5…
  2. iPad “4” (Retina DisplayLTE):
    1. The first and second download attempts were at the same time of 1A & 1B above – both failed and reported the exact same error message.
    2. A third attempt produced the interesting result whereby the iPad (Settings > General > Software Update) reported that the iOS 6 version was up-to-date and that no iOS7 update was available…
    3. During the day, whilst at work, I connected the iPad to my Macbook; the Macbook to my iPhone hotspot (for internet connectivity) and was able to complete the iOS7 update via iTunes.
  3. iPhone 4S (Dad’s former unit):
    1. Initial attempts to update the unit on Thursday night (~9pm) reported slow download speeds (up to 4 hours) when triggering the update either directly on the phone or via iTunes.
    2. This unit remains, to date, on iOS 6; given it has now been sold, I will leave this update to the new owner.
  4. iPad “3” (Dad’s unit):
    1. A similar effort was attempted on Thursday night simultaneous to 3A above.
    2. A successful update was completed on Saturday lunch-time; download times were very reasonable (20 min) so the peak loads of iOS7 updates had passed.

In upgrading the operating system software to iOS7, all third-party charging cables have stopped working…  This is annoying given it reduces our ability to keep charging all devices simultaneously…

3. iPhone Sales

As mentioned in Section 1 above, two iPhone sales are currently in progress:

  1. iPhone 4S (Dad’s former unit)
    1. The general pattern in our household is that I upgrade my technology/device and a “hand me up” transition follows, whereby my old unit becomes my Dad’s current unit; my Dad’s former unit is then sold.
    2. Verbal discussions at work on Friday resulted in an agreement whereby my colleague’s girlfriend agreed to purchase the unit for $350.
    3. Settlement and handover is scheduled for Monday. I’ve also agreed to throw in a second redundant charger.
    4. With this sale, my Dad’s iPad remains the only device utilising the 30-pin charger connector… (Maybe we should “solve” this problem?)
  2. iPhone 5S:
    1. This second unit was purchased at the Apple store launch on impulse.
    2. During the Friday daytime, I posted on Facebook a message advertising the unit for sale at $1200~1250. Some friends took note (one thinking I was over Apple and trying to sell my own unit, which I corrected)
    3. At Friday lunchtime, I quickly posted an advertisement on Gumtree. Now, in the last year, I have come to trust and view Gumtree as more reliable than eBay. I’m not sure exactly why, but generally I have found the type of people using Gumtree to be more… genuine?
    4. A number of enquiries have ensued over the weekend, but the latest one has progressed further than the others with a deposit to secure the beginnings of a sale and request the removal of the ad.
    5. Settlement/transfer is planned for the Tuesday in the city… Payment has been handled via PayPal which has worked well without issue, although they did charge a small fee.

4. iPhone 5S Video Test

Attending a wedding on Saturday 21 gave me the first opportunity to test/use the iPhone 5S camera, where I recorded the processional: Jonita & Adrian Wedding Procession. During the signing of the registry, the photo opportunity again allowed for a comparison with my friend’s iPhone 4S camera where we took the same shot. The clarity and high-definition resolution benefits were visibly clear. Some of the features explored with friends included the camera Slow Mo and “10-shots in a second” features.

5. Church / ProPresenter

In the last month, helping my church utilise ProPresenter has helped us come to a point where we can now switch and deliver triple-screen media. In the last few weeks, we have started experimenting with video footage filmed specifically for the triple-wide screen layout. Initially, scaling the dimension of the footage in Apple Final Cut Pro resulted in a sub-optimal blurry output. Our learning experience with video editing has led us to the conclusion that custom resolution videos of the required high-resolution (3840 x 1080) is possible only with Apple Motion. We have also developed a PowerPoint slide template which is three screens wide for both our church graphics designer to create our static announcement slides, as well as our Pastors to create sermon slides that fully utilise the three screens.

Sunday 15 September was an intensive workout of our systems given it was Baptisms & Testimonies Sunday. From memory we had about 5 different video clips, a slide show of photos and a live camera to juggle with. Fortunately, with ProPresenter controlling it all, the service was quite manageable.

In comparison, Sunday 22 September (just this last weekend) had a number of technical glitches. One “bug” which I have now resolved is how to get messages to appear on-screen – we had a child from Kids Church who required his father – and we couldn’t easily locate the parent. Now, we have noticed two weeks in a roll that the on-screen message wouldn’t appear… I have now worked out why and how to correct this, so we will be able to offer “Kids Church alerts” and the like in the future…

Other technical glitches involved attempting to try some advanced usage of ProPresenter.  We tried to use multiscreen cues on blank slides within the playlist to help structure and sequence the actions such that a video could be output in a full centre screen layout followed by a quick switch back to normal left/right multiscreen layout setting. Unfortunately, at the time, we set up the multiscreen cues on the same slide presentation, so the multiscreen cue last set was applied to both instances. As a result, we applied the “first” multiscreen cue and then the video played stretched across three screens wide… We also had our first announcements video play for about 10 seconds whilst the iMac audio was on mute – so we had to hit replay… Finally, the Skype video session with Andrew Chan (one of the Bali Nine on death row in Indonesia) was plagued with constant poor communication quality (at the Indonesian end) so a big chunk of the interview didn’t succeed.

On a final positive note, we have successfully operated the ProPresenter system remotely from iPads, in addition to finding the optimal way to create a sermon/slide of triple-wide screen backgrounds; each slide with an individual background image acting as a background image cue.


Thanks for reading & visiting XBOP.