I bought the new iPhone 14 Pro Max the day after it went on sale in Apple stores.
I got $640 back by trading in my iPhone 13 Pro Max, but I still had to pay another $780.
I was excited about the "Dynamic Island" feature, but I should have listened to Steve Jobs' daughter.
For the past decade or so, I've been one of Apple's best customers. I've bought every new iPhone since I made the switch from a BlackBerry to the iPhone 4S.
This year has been no exception. I bought an iPhone 14 Pro Max, 256 GB, in Silver, the day after it was released on September 17. I got $640 back by trading in my iPhone 13 Pro Max, but I still had to pay $780.
After a couple of weeks of playing with my new toy, I can confidently say there are no big surprises to be found, apart from the "Dynamic Island". That's Apple's fancy name for the dead space between the selfie camera and Face ID sensor now used for "consolidating your notifications, alerts, and activities into one interactive place".
My colleague Antonio Villas-Boas can tell you all about the technical aspects of Apple's latest products, so I will concentrate on what it's been like to use.
Steve Jobs' daughter was right
Ultimately, Eve Jobs, the daughter of Apple cofounder Steve Jobs, was right when she posted a meme on Instagram that joked the iPhone 14 is eerily similar to the previous model.
It reads: "Me upgrading from iPhone 13 to iPhone 14 after Apple's announcement today," while showing a man holding up a shirt identical to the one he's wearing.
While the newest series of smartphones has several new software features, I'm disappointed that there isn't more to it.
I admit I was very excited about the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max going fullscreen - especially now the notch has gone.
I'll also concede that the Dynamic Island feature is very cool indeed. I like that you can simply press it when listening to music and it takes you back to the application. It could have been used more effectively, however.
Having had the iPhone 13 Pro Max, I can't see a difference that makes it actually worth upgrading for, apart from Dynamic Island. Maybe the smartphone has simply got as good as it's fundamentally going to get?
I always find excuses to justify splashing hundreds on a new smartphone: using my iPhone for work, documenting reporting trips, ensuring the battery lasts all day, and that it can support all the things I've got to do on it. Let's call that exactly what is is: nonsense.
Even a now-ancient iPhone 8 (from way back in, erm, 2017) could do the job. However, there's an appeal to having the latest mobile phone, and it's nothing more than a way to brag to your friends.
Apple CEO Tim Cook told someone who asked him whether Apple would adopt RCS - a messaging app developed by Google for Android mobiles - so his mom could more easily see the videos he sends her that he should buy his mom an iPhone.
It's not just an iPhone that Cook thinks everyone should own when there are also AirPods, iPads, MacBooks and the Apple Watch to buy as well. And yes, I do own all of those devices as well, of course.
While I've always said I don't think I could change from an iPhone to an Android, plenty of people have done so and somehow survived. Maybe it's time I took an iOS holiday too?