Schriver’s 40 Point Game Leads Comets to Overtime Win Over Buckskins

By Jake Herr

The initial blast of energy walking into Penn Manor’s game on Jan 15 was exhilarating. With everyone standing on both sides of the court cheering, the JV game was tied in overtime. Penn Manor’s JV team would go on to lose the game by a thrilling two points. Little did everyone know that the varsity game would result in a white knuckle over-time finish as well.

The Comets played differently in this game compared to games in the past. You could see in Penn Manor’s starter’s faces that they were hungry for a well-deserved win. The starters for PM were senior Ellie Barley, senior Ally Rowe, sophomore Alyssa Schriver, sophomore Sheyla Greggs and sophomore Danielle Heisey. Taking the court, the Comets came to do one thing — win.

Starting the game off, Penn Manor scored early and rapidly, leading over the Buckskins. Turning the page, Conestoga Valley freshman Amber High shut down the Comet’s scoring drive with back-to-back three point shots. High racked up a season high total of 22 points. Those 22 points were not enough to stop the Comets though.

As time dwindled, the Comets were cutting the deficit. 10, 7, 5, etc. Schriver’s shot stayed hot the whole night but especially at the end of the game and in halftime when PM needed it. Before long, the Lady Comets brought back the score to 53-53. Nobody scored, forcing the game to go into overtime.

With the prior JV game going into overtime, ticket buyers were getting a “bang for their buck” for these white-knuckle games. (Interesting fact, the Penn Manor varsity boys basketball team’s game went into overtime on the same night.)

With her total points already in the 30s, Schriver turned on the back burners to lead the Comets through the extra time. As the Buckskins kept fouling Schriver, she kept sinking her foul shots, which put PM slightly over CV little by little. CV also missed several crucial foul shots in the end of overtime, which helped the Comets sneak ahead.

Schriver racked up four three-pointers in the game. Eight of the points were from foul shots. She was the first PA Mid-State player with a 40-point game so far this season. Schriver is the leading scorer of the Lady Comets and is averaging 24.3 points a game with a total of eight three pointers in her last four games.

“While I was shooting the three pointers, I was mainly focused on my shot and form,” said Schriver about the mental side of making her shots. “With my free throws, I was trying not to think too much and just shoot because we needed them to seal the game.”

As the time ticked down and Penn Manor families got louder and louder, the Comets pulled further ahead. With a final score of 64-59, the Comets won arguably the most adrenaline-filled game they have played so far this season.

The Penn Manor Comets host the Warwick Warriors at 7:30 p.m. tonight at Penn Manor High School. The Comets beat the Warriors the last time the two teams faced off.

Boys Basketball Wins Home Opener Against Ephrata: Analysis

 

By Jake Herr

The sea of white slowly fills into the bleachers as Penn Manor’s boys basketball team prepares for their first home game of the 2015 season on Dec. 10 against the Ephrata Mounts. “White Out” was the theme of the game for Penn Manor’s student section.

It was also Penn Manor’s annual “Box Out Cancer” game to show respect for the victims who had lost their lives to the disease or who are fighting it. After a moment of silence, the starters took the floor.

As word got out that Ephrata’s  star guard, Matthew McGillen had been placed on the disabled list, Penn Manor’s chances of coming away with a win only grew higher. Penn Manor dominated the first half, racking up 31 points and only allowed Ephrata to score 16.

Charlie Fisher, Ephrata’s first year head coach, must have given the Mounts a great pep-talk during halftime. The Mounts came out strong in the second quarter, silencing Penn Manor.

Ephrata went on a 15-0 run, controlling the whole court and put the Mounts within grasp of the Comets.

Seniors Eric Snyder and Sean Borden knew they could stop the bleeding Ephrata was causing. Snyder assisted Borden for a three point basket. After this shot, the Comets went on a 7-0 run answering to the Mounts.

Senior guard Nate Brown made a large contribution to the Comets win. Brown was the team’s leading scorer with a solid 12 points.

“We were sloppy at times but we found a way to win,” said Brown. “That’s what we came to do.”

Junior Cameron Lovett was right behind Brown’s stats with 11 points.

The Comets flew ahead of Ephrata to wrap up the game with a showing of solid offense and defense. The final score was 46-41, Penn Manor.

Ephrata fell to having a 0-3 overall record so far this season.  Penn Manor capped its second win and advanced to a 2-1 record. Their current record, after another win on December 16, is 3-2 overall, 2-1 league.

Penn Manor’s JV team won large with a final score of 29-49. Sophomore Roman Ali led the team with baskets, racking up 12 points.

Consumerism Overshadows Christmas

By Maria Lopezchristmas shopping

December has arrived, and with it all the magic of the season. Christmas is known for been the holiday that brings happiness and joy between families and friends, but what type of happiness are we looking for this time of the year? Many people see Christmas as the perfect moment to buy presents and most of all receive them. People also enjoy being surrounded by plenty of food and many of us forget the real meaning of the holiday.

It all started decades ago, when the marketing started to play with our heads. Christmas songs, lights, photos with Santa, and of course, presents, are part of the Christmas spirit that make customers spend every year more money.

Did you know that in the holidays of 2013, according to “The Center for Retail Research,” the United States retail industry generated around $3 trillion, which was 19.2 percent of the retail industry total sales for the entire year? Plenty of people start their spending in September and other people even earlier.

Christmas trees are a major thing that people buy during the holidays. In 2012 there were about 33 million real Christmas trees that were sold and each one costs an average of $35.30. Just imagine how much money is there!

People spend on gifts, food, drinks, decorations and Christmas travel. On average, people spend 59.2 percent of their money on gifts, 27.9 percent on food and drinks, 9.9 percent on Christmas travels and 3 percent on decorations.

Statista.com published a survey about the estimated Christmas spending of U.S. consumers from 1999 to 2015, and the result for 2015 was an average of $840.

This consumerism has change the holiday. Every year there is more spending and the real meaning of Christmas stays in the background. Each person decides how to celebrate the season. Don’t let the marketing make you forget the real meaning of Christmas.  

Is going to a four-year university worth it?

By Matt Tulli

For seniors, this is the time of your educational career that you’ve been preparing for since kindergarten: college applications. Since 9th grade, you’ve been getting nagged by administrators to research colleges, majors, and careers, fill out résumés, complete graduation projects and everything else that comes with those repetitive class meetings. You are now entering into one of the most important, memorable and expensive times of your live.

With so many different post-secondary opportunities students are given, like technical schools and community colleges, it seems as if university is getting less and less necessary to obtain the skills that are needed for a career. Many jobs are available to people with just two-year degrees, and the student loan debt is just a fraction of what it would be at a four-year school. So, is college actually worth it?

Well, that’s a tough question to answer. It all depends on where you go to college and under what circumstances. Some students are lucky enough to have their parents pay for college, some are good enough athletes to get scholarships, some get financial aid, you name it. But let’s assume that a student is paying for his or herself and going to a four-year university.

A student going to a public, four-year, in-state college is looking at paying about $9,139 tuition per year, on top of about $9,804 for room-and-board and other fees, bringing the total to $18,943, according to topuniversities.com. And for four years, this total is $75,772. This student will have to take out a student loan of about $45,000, and this will build interest, to let’s say $55,000. So, in total, this student will be paying $85,772 for college.

So while the fun of college is happening to this guy, he could actually have been working in a career that he could have gotten right out of high-school, or at a career that he could have gotten after just two years of college. This is called opportunity cost.

Let’s estimate here and say that this student has to make $160,000 dollars more than he would have if he wouldn’t have gone to college (factoring in cost for college, opportunity cost, and inflation).

So let’s do the math: this student has to make up $160,000 of earnings in about 50 years to have college pay for itself. An average work year consists of 2,000 hours. In fifty years, this is 100,000 hours. $160,000 divided by 100,000 is $1.60. So, this guy needs to make $1.60 more per hour than he would have had he decided not to go to a four-year university.

On average, a person who doesn’t go to college makes an average of $35,030 ($17.52/hour). A college graduate makes an average of $57,655 ($28.83/hour). In these cases, college has paid for itself plus about $9.70 per hour. 
Now, I realize that these are rough estimates and that this is based on averages. There are plenty of cases where these statistics would not apply. But, for all intents and purposes, this says that college is well worth it. Also, I realize that the career field you would like to go in to requires or doesn’t require college. I’m not saying you must go to college to enjoy your career; I’m just showing that based on median tuitions, salaries, and work hours, college does indeed pay for itself.

Ignoring climate change is a very dangerous thing

By Matt Tulli

“We’re experiencing record cold temperatures here. Yeah right, global warming.” “If I still have to wear a winter coat at the end of March, I can’t believe global warming.” “Climate change is a natural occurrence, the climate of earth has changed many times over its history. It’s no big deal.”

Ugh.

Climate change (yes, ‘climate change’, referring to the total changing of earth’s climate, not just temperatures) is not a myth, as 97 percent of climate scientists would agree. Climate change can most likely be chalked up to human activities, such as the burning of fossil fuels and emitting harmful gases into the air, as most of you know. Unfortunately, though, some people still have the audacity to deny it altogether, solely based on the fact that it was absolutely freezing this winter on the East coast. To that, I would have to use one very simple fact to make you think differently: Ever since temperatures had been officially and accurately recorded, 13 of the 14 hottest years on record have occurred in the 21st century, according to the Weather Channel. The other one? That one occurred in 1998.

There are many different misconceptions about climate change, some absolutely wrong and some close to being right. The most important one is the fact that “Climate Change” and “Global Warming” are interchangeable. This is partly right, considering that average global temperatures are rising, so calling it “global warming” is technically correct. But the term “climate change” includes not only the temperatures, but also evidence of climate change like increasing ocean acidity, more intense storms, and rising sea levels, among others (rising sea levels are due to the ocean water becoming warmer, therefore expanding, not just polar ice melting).

Another inaccurate but popular response to climate change is the fact that climate trends are common in the history of the earth, and we’re just experiencing another one. Well, this one is a little bit better because it at least admits that the Earth’s climate is in fact changing. But, this idea is still inaccurate. Carbon dioxide is being put into the atmosphere at unprecedented levels. For 650,000 years prior to 1950, carbon dioxide never made up more than 300 parts per million in the atmosphere. It reached that level in 1950, and today, it’s all the way up to just more than 400 parts per million. CO2 has already been proven to trap heat, so the alarming increase of temperatures on Earth can most definitely be chalked up to the trapping of heat due to CO2 emissions.

Furthermore, there is a small chance, but still a chance that you hear the misunderstood statement that the environment puts more pollution into the air than humans. This is also true, considering natural ocean and land processes put CO2 into the air at a rate of 780 gigatons per year. However, Earth’s land and its oceans also take in about 780 gigatons of CO2 per year, so it equals out. But now, humans emit 30 gigatons of pollution per year, which throws the balance off.

If we continue to deny or push aside the problem of climate change, the Earth will experience sea level rise, more natural disasters, global temperature rise, increased oceanic acidity, and many other harmful consequences of our carelessness. I’m not trying to turn this into a political debate, but it should be known that Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz has publically stated that many alarmists on global warming, “got a problem ‘cause the science doesn’t back them up. And in particular, satellite data demonstrate for the last 17 years, there’s been zero warming. None whatsoever. It’s why — you remember how it used to be called ‘global warming’ and then magically the theory changed to ‘climate change’?” Oh Ted. Before this, he states that, “Today, the global warming alarmists are the equivalent of the flat-Earthers. It used to be [that] it is accepted scientific wisdom the Earth is flat, and this heretic named Galileo was branded a denier.”

Senator Cruz, Galileo had nothing to do with proving the theory of Earth being flat as wrong. Ninety-seven percent of climate scientists agree on the issue of climate change, and disagree with your opinion. Meanwhile, the flat-Earth idea was widely denied in Galileo’s time. In fact, in 200 B.C., Greek mathematician Eritosthanes calculated the circumference of the Earth. Circumference, as in circles.

It may not seem like that big of a problem today, but I would rather address it now than leave it up to our generation to figure out a massively devastating issue 30 years from now.

Student encourages others to consider pet adoption

 

Maisie with her new owner, "Daddy Ray." (Photo provided)

Maisie with her new owner, “Daddy Ray.” (Photo provided)

By Emily Thyrum

According to “Fast Facts: U.S. Animal Shelters”, an article from “petfinder.com”, due to a lack of pet adoption, approximately 50 percent of dogs and 70 percent of cats in shelters are “destroyed”. What is the best way to help these animals? The answer is fairly simple: to consider pet adoption yourself.

I am a volunteer for Pet Guardians, a non profit pet adoption organization in Lancaster. According to the Pet Guardians website, the organization’s mission statement is “…to seek homes for pets that belong to patients who are terminally ill. We will do our best to find safe homes for the beloved pets of elderly people or those with a life- threatening illness.”

There is no adoption fee; however, all of the new pet adopters are thoroughly screened, and Pet Guardians does a home visit to make sure it is going to be a good match for the pet.

Dr. Debra Vredenburg, the founder of Pet Guardians, emphasized the importance of her organization’s cause.

“There’s definitely a need for people to consider adopting an older pet; they still have a lot of love to give,” said Vredenburg. “The main goal is to keep that bond between the previous owner and the pet alive, and often times the new owner will take the pet to the retirement home to visit its previous owner.”

Laura, a foster for Pet Guardians, stresses the importance of foster homes as an alternative to the shelters that are not able to accept the thousands of animals a day who need a home.

“Each and every one was a wonderful cat, worthy of being saved and who just needed a temporary place until their forever home was found.”

Laura recollects the story of an older gentleman named “Daddy Ray” and an older cat named Maise. Laura was worried that Maise would not find a home because of her old age, but when the cat met “Daddy Ray”, Laura described the scene as “magical” because the cat was able to fill a “huge hole in Daddy Ray’s heart and the two became inseparable”.

“The Health Benefits of Companion Animals”, article by “Pets Are Wonderful Support”, describes the benefits of owning a pet: animals can help improve one’s cardiovascular health, stress levels, and social interactions, along with reducing one’s feelings of loneliness and depression. The article also shows that owning a pet has been found to reduce anxiety and aggression within Alzheimer’s patients, and that owning a pet has been shown to provide emotional support for females who “have suffered physical abuse”.

The article “adoption guide: Dog” by The Pedigree Adoption Drive gives some advice for making the adoption process easier. Potential owners should properly account for the costs of the animal before the adoption is finalized, including the cost of “food, leashes, collars, toys, grooming supplies, bedding, medical treatment and other things a new [pet] requires.”

The article “What to Consider Before Adopting a Pet” by Homeward Pet Adoption Center also describes the importance of considering the time required to take care of a pet, for a pet will need your assistance with “…exercise, care, and companionship every day of every year.” The article also explains why it is essential for a pet owner to accept the “special problems that a pet can cause;” pet hair and scratched up furniture are always a risk of adopting a pet.

If you first consider the responsibilities required that go along with being a pet owner, pet adoption certainly is a meaningful choice.

If you are interested in adoption from Pet Guardians, please contact ThePetGuardians@yahoo.com.

Customer loyalty is being tested with rising Nike shoe prices

These Kobe Bryant 9 Elite shoes sell for $225.

These Kobe Bryant 9 Elite shoes sell for $225.

By Matt Tulli

For this basketball season, I was lucky enough to get two pairs of basketball shoes: One for practices, and one for games. Sometimes I’ll wear my game shoes to practice but I try to keep them as clean and in good condition as possible. I asked my parents if I could get two pairs before the season started, and they agreed, in part because I told them I’d promise to take good care of them, but also because I got them both at discounted prices; one through the basketball team shoe sale, and the other with a coupon I found (well, it was for free shipping but it still counts).

I am completely grateful for the things my parents provide for me and I realize I am lucky to have been able to get these two pairs of shoes, and my parents were not struggling to afford them. I’m grateful because I realize there are families out there that are saving up and digging into their pockets to pay for basketball shoes for their sons and daughters. And in some cases, the kids themselves are required to pay for them.

This is where the problem comes in for many people with regard to these multi-billion dollar companies charging upwards of $160 dollars for a pair of shoes for aspiring basketball players, who may not even make the team this year. And even more than that, the shoes aren’t even durable enough to last a full calendar year with all the open gyms and basketball workouts coaches are holding nowadays (and I’m not blaming this on the basketball shoe manufacturers).

Although it is unclear exactly how much money it costs Nike to produce one pair of shoes (materials, labor, shipping, packaging costs), we can assume based on a study by the Portland Business Journal that one pair of regular, $100 shoes costs Nike about $28.50 to manufacture. Nike then sells these to retailers at around $50 for around a $12 to $13 profit. This is called the wholesale price. Then, the retailers mark the price up usually 100 percent.

One hundred percent.

Fifty dollars marked up 100 percent is $100.

So, it’s the retailers who are making us shell out all this money?

Well, no. You see, retailers are businesses too. They need to make money to keep their businesses going. That’s why the J.Crew Factory Store can get away with 60 percent off the entire store plus 15 percent off after Christmas. They aren’t a separate business, as the J.Crew Factory Store manufactures their goods and sells them directly to the consumer, eliminating the “middle man” of another store.

These retailers, such as Dick’s Sporting Goods, Foot Locker or Nordstrom need to make money too, for rent, marketing and profit. The manufacturers need these retailers to market and sell their products. That’s why retail stores can be so lucrative.

But, that brings up the issue of Nike.com, and why Nike can get away with selling Kobe 9 Elite shoes for $225 when they don’t have to sell it to a retailer. Well, basically, the price is always going to be the same, whether at a retail store or outlet store. If not, why would consumers spend money at retail stores instead of buying them for a cheaper price at an outlet store? The fact is, Nike really wants you to buy apparel, especially basketball shoes, straight from Nike.com, because they’re able to eliminate the “middle man”: retailers. So, instead of making the small profit of when retailers buy their products in order to resell them, they can just sell the product at the ridiculous retail price for a larger profit.

There are multiple reasons why prices of basketball shoes are going up. These include inflation (about .8 percent per year during the past decade according to inflationdata.com), demand for these popular shoes, and other smaller factors such as the cost to advertise for these shoes, and newer technologies being introduced into basketball shoes. High-end athletes are asking more and more money for these contracts: Superstar Kevin Durant recently signed a $300 million deal to stay with Nike, for example.

So, in review: While people may not like the prices of basketball shoes (myself included), it is what it is. Prices of shoes can be  justified by demand for shoes, inflation, and other aforementioned factors. If shoes are going to sell at a high price, Nike is going to continue to sell them at a high price. If nobody buys the shoes, then Nike will have to sell them at a lower price. But that doesn’t seem like it’s going to happen anytime soon.

Nike.com and Nike iD (where buyers can customize shoes to their liking) are where Nike makes most profit. When selling to a retail store such as Dick’s Sporting Goods, Nike sells the shoes to them for about 50 percent of their retail value, then are marked up by the retailers. While these retailers may seem like the main culprit, they are businesses too and must make money to stay in business; this is achieved by marking up the shoes.

Technology’s Impact on Children

by Claudia Pluck

Technology is not only changing every second of every day, but it’s also changing the way it is impacting children all at the same time. Children are learning about technology faster and faster every day and how to use the devices. Devices are made for children of all ages including toddlers now too. According to Karehka Ramey from useoftechnology.com, technology is used more by children nowadays than it ever has since the 1990s.

 Karehka also says that children use different technologies including things like television, social networks, internet, video games, smartphones and even things like the calculator. Using things like the calculator prevent children from doing things with there own brain to actually learn and process what is going on when doing different things. Some things include different math problems and in different situations when they get older like when paying their own bills.

 Slowly and slowly while learning these different forms of technology children can become lazier because they start to not use their brain and not function much by just sitting on the couch all day using technology. Using the technology too much can cause children to have weight problems which can lead to serious diseases that last for the rest of their lives. Karehka Also says technology can also restrict children from interacting which other kids and can lead to children being very lonely or depressed.

 We may start to now think that it is all because of the children, but it is not.  Karehka says that parents as the adults have the responsibility to give children a limit on how much time is enough time for children to be using the technology on a daily basis.  Laziness from technology can be prevented everyday by parents making sure their children are being active for the appropriate amount of time everyday.

 As to all of that, Karehka also says parents and children using technology need to be aware of the predators that lurk on the internet. That then being said the internet can not only affect if children are safe from these dangerous people, but can also affect the parents seeing that their children have the possibility of being stolen.

 Technology for children is not only just a negative thing but it can also be a positive thing if it is used by the children in the proper way. According to verdick.org  technology can be used to enhance learning for a child by things like building social skills and helping them learn faster. It could also help to get them to know their surroundings. In the long run technology impacts children in different ways depending on how it is used by them.

 

 

websites referred to :

1.http://www.useoftechnology.com/effects-technology-children/

2.http://verdick.org/child-development-and-the-internet/child-dev-pos

3. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/07/apps-for-babies_n_3721886.html

The Idea of Arming Teaching Will Be Shot Down, Eventually

by Matthew Tulli

A proposed Pennsylvania bill by State Sen. Don White (R-Indiana) would allow school employees, after obtaining licensing and certification, to carry concealed weapons at school. And by “school faculty”, I don’t just mean teachers. By “school faculty”, I mean teachers, principals, counselors, custodians, lunch ladies, etc.

This is obviously getting a lot of backlash from Democrats, who stand far apart from the views of many Republican Senators. Sen. Anthony Williams, D-Philadelphia, said, “It is a bad idea to place such a grave responsibility on people whose principal interest is educating children,” according to The Washington Times.

At first reading that statement seems ridiculous, and that’s exactly what it is. Obviously a reaction to recent massacres like Aurora, Colorado, Columbine High School and Sandy Hook, the solution will not be found in arming teachers. Although tragedies like this do happen, putting a gun in the hands of an individual takes a lot of trust, more than I think we are able to invest for such a rare occurrence. Instead of giving teachers weapons, we should hire more qualified, highly screened security guards, if more security is necessary.

There are many problems with the idea of allowing faculty to carry weapons. First off, the ability for schools to put a firearm in the hands of all school faculty at the over 3,290 schools in Pennsylvania sounds to me like a very dangerous proposition. The guns are being put exactly where we do not want them: in schools. It seems to contradicting the point of the the bill, which is to supposedly to protect students. What happens when a seemingly sane teacher pulls a gun on a student? Or what happens when a student gets his hands on one of these guns? This proposal brings up many more ramifications that exist now. I think it would be natural for students to feel uneasy about knowing their teachers are in possession of a deadly weapon. I’m sure that feeling would wear away within a little while, but it’s still going to sit in the back of our minds.

Secondly, Adam Lanza, the shooter at Sandy Hook Elementary used a fully-automatic military grade assault rifle to murder those 26 people. I’m not sure he would be too fazed about some teachers carrying around small pistols, considering he committed suicide after first responders arrived at the scene.

Third, with school budgets already tight, and the money spent on the certification and training programs would just make education costs tighter. Would it costs the school district to buy the weapons? Would it costs schools to train the faculty? If the answers to these questions are “yes”, it brings me back to the question: Is this really necessary?

Why do you think we have an armed officer, Mr. Hottenstein? Why do you think our doors are locked at all times? Why do you think there’s a 2-way mirror in the office? These innovations are here to keep all 2000 students and faculty safe throughout the school day in today’s dangerous world. So is putting a deadly weapon in the hands of over 125,000 teachers reasonable? My answer is no.

iDissapointment

“Eh.”

Image provided by cnet.com

That’s the first thing that came to mind after getting a first look at the iPhone 6 in May, when YouTube user and technology geek Marques Brownlee (@MKBHD) was given a “dummy” model from another person who got their hands on it. The dummy model is the model that Apple sends out to case makers so they can start designing and manufacturing cases months ahead of the release of their newest phone. He posted a video revealing the shape and size of the newest iPhone on his YouTube channel.

The iPhone 6 is like when taking a test you felt really confident about, thinking you’re getting an A, but then getting a 74. And the iPhone 6 Plus is like when on that same test you got a little smiley face on the back page for getting the two-point extra credit right.

Apple could have done so much with this newest iPhone! They could have made it waterproof. They could have given it the best camera ever put into a phone. They could have slapped on a metal back and a screen that would make the whole thing shatter proof.

But what did they do? They made it bigger. Incredible.

First off, Apple is way behind the competition in terms of innovation of their mobile phones. The Nexus 4, released in November of 2012, had the same size screen as the iPhone 6, released in September 2014. That same Nexus 4 had the same megapixel camera as the iPhone 6. Also, Apple raves about its new “Retina HD Display”, which is just over 720p, but in reality, the HTC One and Samsung Galaxy S4 had the a better resolution screen since early 2013.

In 2010, Steve Jobs claimed nobody would want a phone the size of larger Samsung phones, but Apple finally gave into the pressure and created 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch screen phones to rival other smartphones. Apple shouldn’t give in to other smartphone companies. The iPhone 6 Plus is a whopping two inches bigger than the iPhone 4 and 4S, nearly twice the size (screen sizes are measured diagonally; a 10 inch screen is twice as big as a 7 inch screen). That may not seem like much, but look at the picture below. What I’m getting to is this: I think there will eventually be a point where screen size on a phone tops out. People won’t want a phone that will barely fit into their own pockets. Honestly, I’m happy with my iPhone 4S screen size. Yeah, I’d rather see seven or eight messages at a time in a conversation instead of four or five, but I also don’t want to be making calls on an iPad. As much as I like the bigger screen, Apple obviously forced the issue here because the screen makes the front of the phone look so awkward. Apple should keep doing what they used do best and simply make new upgrades that are original to them.

All that said, do you think I’m gonna get one the first day I’m available for an upgrade? Of course I am.

But let’s look on the bright side:  First, when I pick up the phone, it is really really light. A phone that large and powerful should not be that light.

It’s also incredibly thin. At a whopping 6.9 millimeters, this phone’s thinness is amazing when considering its power. However, this comes with a few disadvantages. First, the battery in the phone is not as big as it could be. Like I said before, Apple could have made a phone with a record-setting battery or some other specs that could put it above and beyond the competition. But they chose to go the thin route. Also, the thinness may make it easy to drop, which, with the way people treat their smartphones nowadays, is probably a bad thing (but hey, if people keep needing to buy replacements, I guess that’s an economical advantage for Apple). Lastly, the thinness causes the improved camera to protrude out of the back, making it prone to be scratched, and that’s probably the last thing you want to be scratched on a phone other than the screen.

Lastly, about the iPhone 6 Plus: On September 23rd, Unbox Therapy (Lewis Hilsenteger) posted a YouTube video (that had over 50 million views as of October 3) after he got several reports of the iPhone 6 Plus bending in people’s pockets. The video consisted him explaining the reports that he got, and then he tried to bend the phone with his bare hands. Now, keep in mind, he applied as much pressure as he could for about 10 seconds, and, I have to admit, the test came back positive. The iPhone 6 did indeed bend. It was significantly bent on the side of and just below the volume buttons. It was still usable, but a consumer would probably not want their brand new device that they spent a large amount of money on to be misshapen. Now, I must ask you this: Do you really think one of the richest companies in the world would just allow their most recent and best product to bend in a pocket? I don’t think they would. And even if it would, Apple said in a statement released after the video went viral that they would be more than happy to replace it free of charge. So if you’re thinking of buying a sleek new iPhone 6 Plus, don’t be worried about it bending.

Although the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus are quality phones, in terms of innovation, Apple laid an egg. With as great a company as Apple is, I just feel like they could have put themselves into another stratosphere with their newest device, but they added features that have been around for several years now. The next generation of the iPhone is a disappointment, simple as that.

Matthew Tulli