iPhone


5 tips for perfect winter photography on iPhone

Winter is always a great reminder to get outside and enjoy Mother Nature, but capturing those memories is certainly different from taking photos in the summer.

I was recently at Lake Louise in Alberta, soaking in the action of Canada’s favourite game, a pond hockey tournament set in the most Canadian of backdrops, while having a chance to sled with dogs in Canmore. 

While using the iPhone 11 Pro Max on this trip, the temperatures, lighting, contrast, exposure, and action, were all factors when trying to capture the perfect shot. Whether you’re a novice or a professional, here are five tips to help you capture optimize outdoor winter photos on your smartphone. 

Keep your phone warm

While your smartphone is designed to deal with some pretty cold temperatures, you want to make sure you use the right protective gear for the elements. This means having a good case to keep it insulated, or a protective and shockproof housing if you’re going to be in water, ice, or snow. 

Use the video stabilization

The triple-camera lens array on iPhone 11 Pro brings 4K video recording to a whole new level with vibrant dynamic range and cinematic-quality video stabilization. For high-action events, like sledding with dogs in Canmore, Alta., this means you can capture fluid video, while still having handy access to the shutter button to snap still photos for use on social media. 

Swipe below to view video of stabilization shot on iPhone 11 Pro Max

HDR

HDR is a setting you want to make sure you have turned on. This can be done via your camera preferences, and this ultimately helps you capture the best of high-contrast settings. This takes multiple rapid photos and stitches together the best part of each image. What you get in the end is darker shadows and more vibrant, visible brights in one shot. 

iPhone 11 Pro’s HDR can be used across front- and rear-facing cameras as appropriate. 

Lighting and exposure

Think about lighting and exposure when shooting outdoors. Daylight can be your friend, but can also overexpose your images, too. Many photographers opt to shoot in cloudy settings as variables are easy to control, but if you do find yourself in the daylight, when tapping on your photo’s subject to gain focus, make sure to double tap and slide the exposure slider up and down to gain the appropriate and desired level for the current environment.

Animate your memories with Live Photos

Finally, Live Photos are a fun way to animate your memories, especially when there’s a lot of action in your surroundings. Tap the Live Photos icon when taking your photos, and iPhone 11 Pro will capture a short clip before and after the main photo.

When viewing the shot in the Camera Roll, you can long-press to bring the moment to life where the video clips are stitched to the photo along with the audio—fun for triggering memories of the moments that happened around when the photo was taken. 

What are some of your favourite iPhone photography tips? Leave them in the comments below.


Review: iPhone XS features under-the-hood refinements, but it won’t come cheap

Like clockwork, Apple unveiled the latest iteration of their flagship smartphone, iPhone, on Sep. 12 in front of a packed audience at Steve Jobs Theater in Cupertino, Calif. Unlike previous years, however, the tech giant came out with not one, not two, but three smartphones—iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR. Tech enthusiasts applauded as CEO Tim Cook and team revealed the tech; but, is it worth the investment?

This review will focus on iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max—the devices Citytv had a chance to review ahead of the Sep. 21 launch in Canada, alongside Apple Watch Series 4. iPhone XR will go on sale later this year.

Hardware

On the exterior, iPhone X and iPhone XS are almost identical. The immersive screen remains at 5.8-inch, no home button, the same top notch you either love or hate, and IP68 water resistance up to two metres for 30 minutes—which Apple is quite proud of boasting through promotional videos. They also come in a new gold finish (in addition to space grey and silver), which I’m quite a fan of. Storage will be available in 64GB, 256GB, and 512GB configurations.

YOUTUBE/APPLE

In all three models, you’ll notice Apple has done away with the iconic home button, foreshadowing a slow death of the physical switch. As with iPhone X, there is a slight learning curve, but from personal experience, you get used to the shift in habit.

As for the larger iPhone, it seems the company has nixed the ‘Plus’ naming convention, opting for ‘Max.’ iPhone XS Max comes with a 6.5-inch screen—and it’s gigantic. Both XS and XS Max are great for media consumption, but XS Max is immersive but large for pockets—think watching YouTube videos with the new wide stereo speakers. Or my latest obsession—Ignite TV PVR downloads on the airplane.

Do you need the larger screen? No.  Is it nice to have? Yes.  Can it be a pain to carry in your pocket? Certainly, but having the option is great.

Bionic chip for bionic speeds

When migrating my data from my iPhone X, I could notice speed and power from the get-go. This iPhone houses an A12 Bionic and Neural Engine—what Apple calls ’the smartest and most powerful chip in a smartphone.’ The power is best noticed in resource-intensive applications like video editing, augmented reality, and gaming.

Coupled with iOS 12, it’ll unlock new consumer-friendly functionality, like Memoji and every selfie-taker’s new favourite feature: Smart HDR. Using the two 12-megapixel wide and telephoto lenses, Smart HDR means you can, using a slider, control F-stop or depth-of-field appearance in Portrait mode photos. This puts the power of pro photography in a consumer-grade smartphone—perfect for the ‘gram.

Battery life

In comparison to iPhone X, Apple claims iPhone XS will get you 30 minutes longer than iPhone X. iPhone XS Max will beat iPhone X by 90 minutes, according to Phil Schiller.

In real-life, I got a 12-hour day of consistent use out of iPhone XS Max.

Dual SIM support

New to any iPhone is support for two SIM cards through eSIM technology. It’s reliant on carrier adoption—however, it’s the same technology used for cellular connectivity in Apple Watch Series 4—now on all major carriers in Canada.  Traditional SIM cards will still work, but there is only one slot. The variant to be sold in China which will have two SIM trays.

This means that eventually consumers can still have two phone numbers (say, one for personal use and one for work) and receive calls and texts on one iPhone.

Pricing

In terms of pricing, iPhone XS won’t come cheap. At $1,379 CAD for iPhone XS and $1,519 CAD for the iPhone XS Max variant, these phones aren’t cheap. Carriers will subsidize—for example, Rogers is launching an Ultra tier, where for $10 a month, customers can get up to $250 off the upfront cost of ‘iconic’ devices on a term.

Additionally, later this year, Apple is launching iPhone XR, the third device announced at the Cupertino event. It features a ‘Liquid Retina’ LCD display, 12-megapixel camera, and a wide-array of colours, reminiscent of the iPhone 5C. iPhone XR rings in at just over $1,000.

Bottom line

So why would you want this device? You’re likely using an older iPhone—perhaps a 7—and it’s time for an upgrade. As a former iPhone 7 Plus user, iPhone XS Max is a nice option—albeit the hefty price tag.

If you’re an iPhone X user, there’s plenty to love about it still. iPhone XS brings a lot of new under the hood, but might not be worth $1,379.

Lastly, there’s a lot to be intrigued about iPhone XR, from the colour options to battery life. For the average consumer, it may be worth considering it when it comes out later this year. Let the games begin.

Rogers Communications is the parent company of Citytv and this website.


Live Blog: Apple’s 2013 WWDC in San Francisco

Apple is holding their annual Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco, scheduled for 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT.  From iOS 7 to the rumoured “iRadio,” we will be live-blogging CEO Tim Cook’s announcements live!

Follow the developments in the chat below starting at 12:30 p.m. ET/9:30 p.m. PT, and watch along with the chat via Apple’s live stream here.

READ THE CHAT TRANSCRIPT BELOW:


CRTC says customers can cancel wireless contract after 2 years

Phone locked on white backgroundCanada’s Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission says wireless customers will have the ability to cancel their cellphone contracts two years into their term without early termination fees — even if the term is longer — under a new code of conduct unveiled Monday.

The new code, taking effect Dec. 2, is unveiled after a set of public hearings earlier this year had customers demanding clarity of their cellphone contracts and additional charges on their monthly bill.

Also announced by the CRTC includes a overage data cap of $50 per month, and an international roaming data cap of $100 per month in an attempt to minimize surprise bills.

Customers will be able to unlock their mobile devices after 90 days, or immediately if they opt to pay the full price of the device.

The CRTC said customers will also be allowed to return their cellphone within 15 days of purchase (given they’ve stayed within usage limits) if they’re dissatisfied with the wireless provider’s service.