Well, we’ve reached the end of another week and it’s time for us here at NextPit to pick our winners and losers. As you may have noticed, the line of this article has changed and I Casi will be writing this column for this week only !. And I hope I can fill the huge void that Rahul’s (temporary) absence has left!
My tech week actually ends every weekend with Rahul’s review of the past seven days. I’m a little nervous now because I can take care of his baby here today. Don’t worry friends: Rahul will be back in action here next week.
Without further ado, let me tell you that we picked Apple as our winner this week, while Loser Day goes to Xiaomi. But before we explain to you why we picked these two brands as winners and losers, let’s take a look at some of the other tech news of the week.
Samsung’s middle class: the inconspicuous A52
Lately we’ve seen a virtual flurry of successful launches from mid-range smartphones, and of course Samsung is keen to join in. So today I would like to refer you to Ben’s review of the Samsung A52 5G. Honestly, the most spectacular thing about the review is my colleague’s eloquence rather than the device itself. That certainly doesn’t make it a bad smartphone, but it’s not exciting, unfortunately.
Let’s see if the A72 does better. This model recently landed in our office and the review should be posted next week!
Security and software
We talk about the hardware aspects of our smartphones so often, but the fact remains that the software aspects of these devices are just as important. So, over the past week, we’ve been looking at how the entire update game is going for both the upcoming iOS 14.5 and last year’s Android 11. There was also an overview of Samsung’s One UI as well as a look at OnePlus’ OxygenOS.
We would like to continue spending more time on security in the future, and we have already done so in the last few days when my colleague Rubens explained to you how you can find out whether you have already been the victim of a data breach. Ben took a similar route and explained not only the term “smear” to us, but also how you can protect yourself from it.
NextPit podcasts (from now on only in German!)
Oh, and then there’s our brand new podcast where Fabi and I talk about technical topics that don’t necessarily have to be our core topics. I invite you to listen to Casa Casi for the second time this Saturday and to listen to me talking to Fabi about autonomous driving, electromobility and eating. Be warned, this is in German as of now!
We would be happy if our German-speaking readers were already looking at this podcast, and I can promise the rest of our readership that we can present you with podcast formats in Portuguese, English and French in addition to German podcasts for the future. Stay tuned!
Winner of the week: Apple – who else?
Speaking of excited, of course we were excited about the Spring Loaded event, although it was already known that we would likely see new iPads. Sure enough, there was a new iPad Pro with M1 and 5G support. We’re pretty sure we’re going to be debating whether, with such a powerful tablet with a keyboard, you even need a notebook.
Of course, there was a lot more to marvel at, including the long-lost AirTags that we’ve been waiting for two years. Fabi tells you everything you need to know about her in his article. If you want to know what Apple has to say in general, you can check out Ben’s recap of the Apple event where he also talks about the new iMacs.
I don’t know about you, but for me Apple is the winner this week, not only because of strong new products, but also because they know how to create these virtual events in an engaging way.
Loser of the week: Xiaomi and its bad timing
Trust me when I say this. We thought a lot before choosing Xiaomi as this week’s loser. Other possible options likely included Apple – what has to do with the fact that not everyone approves of the iMac’s port shortening, despite its legitimate praise? Or maybe Fitbit with its new fitness tracker “Fitbit Luxe”, which unfortunately comes with a possible cost trap?
However, our unanimous decision was Xiaomi. While the popular smartphone brand receives a lot of praise from us often and for good reason, the recent launch of the new Mi 11 Ultra has got the brand into something of a social media controversy.
Let’s explain. This brand new high-end smartphone was officially announced for the Indian market despite the country’s Covid-19 numbers soaring to record levels. The country is in total chaos and Xiaomi is accused of choosing the worst time to launch a new product. In India it is so bad that 300,000 new infected people are registered in a single day, there is currently no chance for a snowball in hell to contain the pandemic in time, and even goods like oxygen are becoming scarce.
Xiaomi was therefore caught in a social media shit storm because people accused the company of being insensitive. The tenor of the criticism: Who seriously wants to buy an expensive new smartphone now when the entire Indian nation is up to their necks in the water?
Perhaps they also suspected that the product launch was not the best idea at the time, as they had already agreed on a donation the day before, which will be used to buy more than 1000 oxygen concentrators.
We can now consider whether the shit storm is appropriate or whether there has been an overreaction in India. Personally, I don’t think Xiaomi needs to be judged for the bad timing now, but in fact, they could have thought this through better beforehand. Mainly because it would be a while before the Mi 11 Ultra actually goes on sale in India
What do you think? Can you refer to our selection of losers and winners, or would you have chosen a different company? Let us know in the comments and while you’re there leave a greeting to Rahul who will be back next week with its usual winners and losers.