"One student's opinion on Apple's unveiling of the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus and Apple Watch "

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On Tuesday, Apple fanboys, fangirls, techies and casual electronic consumers all over the world rejoiced when the tech company unveiled two larger phones – the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus – and the highly rumored and anticipated Apple Watch.

Wearable tech is all the rage these days. It’s everywhere. Nike Fuels and Fitbits light up the wrists of many college students, myself included. So when Apple convened their annual fall event to announce the next upgrades to some of their products, it came as no surprise that they finally came out with a device to rival Samsung’s – their top competitor – Galaxy Gear.

The real surprise, to me at least, was that the iPhone 6 Plus packed a whopping 5.5” screen – .8” larger than the iPhone 6, 1.5” larger than the iPhone 5s’, and .2” smaller than the gargantuan Samsung Galaxy Note 4 – following the trend of phones with increasingly larger screens.

These aren’t just phones anymore. They are pocket tablets that aren’t so pocket friendly. With their new phones, Apple stopped setting trends and started following them.

For $100 more than the still larger iPhone 6, which starts at $200 for a 16g phone on a two-year contract, everyone can have one of the largest phones on the market. Now brought to you by Apple.

Their newest phones are so big that they had to build in “Reachability” features that attempt to make these phones as thumb friendly as their early and smaller brethren – phones Steve Jobs once described as perfect for their ability to comfortably be held and used with one hand. Good luck trying to use these phones comfortably with one hand.

We all know someone with a phone like Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4, a phone big enough to block most of their face when they’re taking a call or watching a YouTube video. And soon, we’ll know plenty more when the 6 Plus launches on Sept. 19.

Apple was once a trendsetter that revolutionized phones and handheld technology forever with the advent of the iPhone. What they did others followed. The iPod, iPad and iPhone are three devices that have inspired years of other companies’ innovation and to some degree, copying.

But now it seems Apple is comfortable following the pack rather than putting its foot down like the alpha dog they once were. Are other companies making smaller tablets? ‘Introducing the iPad mini!’ Someone made a watch that works with our leading competitors’ phone? ‘Introducing the Apple Watch!’ Bigger phones are trending? We have those now, too!

The phones look great and the watch looks cool – I can’t deny that. At some point in the near future, I’ll undoubtedly own both or some variant of them.

But I miss the Apple I was excited for – the Apple that made other companies follow the trends it started. Apple was the Buzz Aldrin of technology and now, sadly, it’s starting to look like just another guy on the moon.

Come back Apple. I miss you.

email: jordan.oscar@ubspectrum.com