Because the iPhone XR is such a damn fire-breathing beast, I wound up with over eighty screensnaps! Even so, the entire test took just about an hour (no, I didn’t watch the entire test videos!), which was really speedy compared to past tests.
I’ve decided to turn this post into a summary, skipping steps that I screensnapped such as viewing PDFs in Mobile Safari.
This was solely a horsepower test, not a stress test of iBooks. I didn’t do any fast-paging through PDFs to see if I could crash iBooks. The main goal was to see improvements in page rendering speeds compared to prior tests. Has iOS finally reached the point where past problematic PDFs are now more or less trivial to handle?
This joint in Mobile Safari:
Internet Archive with an interesting thing:
The area highlighted in yellow is where people can read a document in the browser. I didn’t expect that to work well in Mobile Safari. It worked smoothly and swiftly for all of the Internet Archive PDFs I tried in this test.
The Crystal Palace PDF in iBooks:
Having gone in eight pages, the thumbnail view highlighted in red shows that not everything has yet been rendered. This PDF is a bear! Even so, actually paging through it went very well, with a fraction of a second to render a page when it got bad.
Castle of Frankenstein in Mobile Safari preview:
Uh-oh! What is wrong with this picture?
Some pages weren’t scanned at the correct size, which leads them to being unreadable mud when zoomed-in:
That is heartbreaking! To have this magazine once again but with the scan being all wrong.
How it should look:
Processed World PDF in iBooks:
No, I didn’t use the same issue as in past tests. This breaks Science but I wanted variety and I was curious:
It didn’t matter that I used a different issue. All of them are ripe bastards that have given iBooks seizures in the past. Just look at the red highlight to see how slowly the pages are being rendered behind the scenes.
Even so, at its worst, there was a little over one second delay to render a page. That’s one big mother of an improvement from past tests! Processed World is now readable in iBooks without frustration!
We pause to show what the tally is in the Books app Library:
And this is the book that started me down this years-long rabbit hole of PDF testing: The People of the Abyss. I’d read the hardcover from the NY Public Library and when I saw Google Books had the same edition, I wanted it!
The People of the Abyss PDF in iBooks:
Look at the red highlight. SHAZAM! All pages immediately rendered! That is breathtaking. The first time I tested this on iOS years ago was a torment to witness! And here’s the crux: This is one of the smallest PDFs!
Here comes The Monster!
The American Magazine in iBooks (full 290MB version):
Over a thousand pages in one PDF. See the red highlight for page rendering. Near-zero rendering delay when actually paging through it. I even jumped ahead a bunch of pages by tapping a thumbnail:
Zero problem. And all this was done with Mobile Safari still open:
Another Problem Child PDF ahead.
Surface Japan in iBooks:
Look at the red highlight and slow rendering speed. Despite that, no delay in paging through. This is just about miraculous!
I can’t wait to get my hands on the new iPad Pro. That will be my Absolute Final PDF test.
Now on to the perplexing YouTube video test.
First the hell with this default:
Give me the damn Desktop view I use every day:
Um…. wait a minute …
Where the hell is the Gear icon so I can select resolution?!!?
No matter what I tapped, I could not find a way to select the video resolution. I don’t know if I somehow missed it or if Google is being a bastard and discriminating against iOS users. If you know, let me know!
This is how that “4K” video looked:
Impressive interleaved with not-so-impressive. And then I decided to be mean and do a Portrait full-screen and got this mess:
Here’s a video that maxes at 1080p (on the real Desktop):
You judge. Here is what I noticed immediately (see yellow highlight boxes):
Now compare that to a rip I did of the video at 1280 x 720:
W! T! F! The iPhone XR version is egregious, atrocious, heinous, and absolute ka-ka! What is going on there?
And then I screwed up. I linked to the wrong Queen at Live Aid video (however, the screensnap in this post is from the correct video). Which turned out to be somewhat instructive anyway.
As close as I could match it on YouTube on my notebook:
Both are equally unimpressive.
Anyway, for the most part, the people who decried the iPhone XR screen for video were full of shit. Just as I suspected.
But why did the videos not look as good as I expected? I think Google is playing saboteur. The Firestorm video should have looked a hell of lot better than it did. That wasn’t full 1080p being delivered by YouTube. And I can’t fault the particular Apple Store WiFi. It has the best WiFi I’ve seen in any store. If WiFi caused cancer, my being there would start up the tumor process within minutes. That’s how generous the WiFi is!
Google is paying Apple several billion dollars to be the default search engine in iOS. Apple should double the goddammed price until Google gives iOS full citizenship rights in regards to YouTube. Give us that fucking Gear icon to select video resolution!
As for the iPhone XR itself, it’s another Apple Lust Object.
But it did in my head and made me think about what I really need in a phone. That’s a post for another time, when I’ve finally decided.
Two more things:
1) Even using the AssistiveTouch button for screensnaps (I customized it so that only screenshot would happen when tapped!), there was too much of a delay. I couldn’t get the image I wanted in videos. The screenshot always happened a second behind. That needs to be improved.
2) I think I overheard an Apple Store rep advising someone who wanted an unlocked XR to wait. That the unlocked version would have different hardware in terms of SIM.
Next weekend, the Absolute Final PDF Test on the iPad Pro 2018 (with 11″ being favored)! Damn, I better take fewer screensnaps.
iPhone XR: Sample Photos And A Video Clip
iPhone XR Test Complete
iPhone XR Quickie
iPhone Xr Weekend Test
iPhones Are Hard To Use (Other Phones Are Even Worse!)
iPhone Xr Is Now An FCC “Go!” For Sale
The Screaming Over The iPhone Xr Screen
Nano-Fondle: iPhone Xs Max, Apple Books
iPhone Xr: The One To Get?
So Is This Why The iPhone Xr Release Is Later?
The iPhone Xr. Dammit.
iPhone Xr Not Available Unlocked?
September 2018 Apple Event Post-Mortem