Tech: Migration (Impressed)

In my previous post about my switch to the iPhone 12, I mentioned that it doesn’t have any new features that really impressed me over my old iPhone 7 Plus. One thing did impress me though: the switch itself, and the migration of everything from my old iPhone 7 Plus to the new one.


You power up the new phone for the first time, with the old phone nearby, and the new phone says: “hey, there’s an old phone nearby that’s also yours, wanna migrate that stuff?” – upon confirmation, it tells the old phone to show a QR code, which you scan with the new phone – and that’s it. All you need to do is wait, and everything is migrated: all installed apps, their settings, their arrangement on the home screen, the phone settings itself of course. The process is almost perfect. I just had to wait.

After the migration was complete, I swapped the SIM card from the old phone to the new phone, and was done. I say that the process is “almost perfect” because some apps afterwards wanted me to sign in again – but not all of them. That’s always fun with my password-manager generated 20-random-characters long passwords. πŸ˜› Dropbox didn’t require a new authentication, but Tresorit did, for example.Β  I don’t think that’s Apple’s problem but rather, that some apps use Apple’s “Keychain” to store authentication data, and others don’t.

One interesting exception was the Signal messenger: it offered a separate migration routine, similar to the one that Apple offers: with the app open on the new phone, you scan a code that the app on the old phone shows, in order to securely transfer the data, encrypted. It was reassuring to see both that the Signal folks had even thought of that step, and that the data was outside of Apple’s reach too (iCloud backups are encrypted in transfer, but not encrypted on Apple’s servers, as far as I know).


After charging the new phone to 100%, the charge lasted me for three days of normal (ie. non-business) usage before it dipped under 20% (which is when the phone suggests to switch to low power mode). The bigger battery is the sole reason I chose to go with the “Max” model (its dimension are almost exactly the same as the 7 Plus). This will be very welcome when I’m out working and have to rely on the phone for navigation, to make 3D tours, and as a display for the drone’s controller. One less worry.


Last not least, there’s the new ultra-wide camera module. Its focal length of 1.54mm translates to 14mm full-frame equivalent, ie. a crop factor of ~9x – meaning that the depth of field of the f/2.4 aperture equals that of a full frame lens stopped down to nearly f/22. If it wasn’t for the dynamic range and (lack of) detail quality, I guess I could actually shoot a real estate job with that camera. πŸ˜‰

The three camera modes that the app shows translate to these numbers.

  • 0.5x = 1.54mm focal length at f/2.4 (14mm ultra-wide, with DOF of f/22 equivalent; crop factor ~9x)
  • 1.0x = 5.1mm focal length at f/1.6 (26mm wide-angle, with DOF of f/8 equivalent; crop factor ~5x)
  • 2.5x = 7.5mm focal length at f/2.2 (64mm light tele, with DOF of f/18 equivalent; crop factor ~8.5x)

It’s interesting that all three camera modules have different crop factors. The “primary” 1.0x camera seems to have the biggest sensor, with a crop factor of “only” 5x.

Here’s a typical Alex-photo I guess – made with the ultra-wide module… can you tell? I have to play more with this. It is insanely wide and I have not a lot of practical experience with such a wide lens. I use my “real” 14mm prime in real estate only for rather small condos and apartments, and otherwise use my 16-35 the most. It is very unusual to me to have this focal length in a phone.

White Sage and California Sagebrush, Highland Valley Trail, Rancho Bernardo. December 2020.
White Sage and California Sagebrush, Highland Valley Trail, Rancho Bernardo. December 2020. iPhone 12 Pro Max ultra-wide camera (cropped from the camera’s native 4:3 to a 5:4 aspect ratio for aesthetic reasons;-)

…and I still miss the home button, and Touch ID, and I still try to swipe up to open the control center. Darnit, Apple.

2 thoughts on “Tech: Migration (Impressed)

  1. My phone and technical savvy are lightyears behind yours, but I will say that at first, the wide-angle of my phone threw me off. But now I like it and sometimes when I’m out with a fairly long lens, like my 60mm (a 120mm equivalent) and don’t want to change lenses, I’m glad to be able to whip that out of my back pocket and photograph a wider view. The brightness (f1.7) also helps up here, where so often the light is dim. Maybe I want to document something but it’s already getting dark. The phone is great for that. It has serious limitations, like overexposing highlights, too much contrast, etc., but I’ve learned which situations it is up to and which it fails in. The lack of home button and touch ID would drive me crazy, too. πŸ˜‰


    1. I’m using the phone a lot for those documentary purposes too but I do have to say that, using Lightroom’s camera feature and capturing raw data does make quite a difference!


Thoughts? Let me hear them.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.