‘And Just Like That,’ Technology Seems to Stand Still
In the ‘Sex and the City’ reboot, Carrie Bradshaw may still be on the cutting edge of fashion, but from her keyboarded BlackBerry to her dated MacBook Pro, it’s clear that she’s still toting some seriously old tech.
It’s been 23 years since we first saw Carrie Bradshaw tapping away on her Apple PowerBook G3 gazing out her Upper East Side apartment window. Needless to say, a lot has changed in the city in the last quarter of a century. Charlotte and Miranda are raising teenagers. Samantha has cut all ties with her friends, packed her bags, and moved to the UK where “sexy sirens in their 60s are still viable.” And, of course, Carrie has made the pivot from writing to podcasting.
Carrie’s relationship with tech has always been tenuous, and in And Just Like That, little has changed. She’s clutching her decrepit laptop and old phones for dear life, while everyone around her has managed to advance with technology. Let’s take a look at some of these ancient gadgets you’ll spot in the first two episodes of the Sex and the City reboot.
Apple iPhone 7
When Carrie pulls out her phone to take a photo of an unknowing passerby, we learn two things: She’s an Instagram creeper, and she uses a rose gold iPhone 7. But this isn’t just any iPhone 7, it’s one covered in stickers and tape with really weird antenna lines. The tape covers the camera flash for no apparent reason. Maybe she just doesn’t know how to turn the flash off?
Released in 2016, the iPhone 7 has a single camera and takes pictures that are comparable with midrange phones like the Samsung Galaxy A32 5G. Sure, she may get a decent shot at brunch, but good luck getting a clear group shot over dinner at Carbone.
And it’s not like she can’t afford a better phone, she simply seems oblivious to the fact that everyone around her is carrying an iPhone 12. This is a woman who lives in a multi-million dollar co-op, has a closet full of clothes and shoes that are probably worth enough to pay for the unit next door, and her husband has a thousands-of-dollars-a-month Bloomberg Terminal on his desk. She can definitely afford an upgrade.
What can we learn from this? Don’t be a creeper like Carrie and definitely don’t buy a 5-year-old phone. If you’re looking for a good deal, pick up the iPhone SE, and if you want something that will easily fit in your tiny bag, check out the iPhone 13 mini.
Although Carrie’s BlackBerry Key2 is a major player in the second episode, it makes a quick guest appearance in the debut episode, when Miranda walks her home and the pair continue to lightly drag Samantha through the mud with slights like “it feels like she is dead” and “she fired me as a friend.”
Fast forward to episode two and we see Carrie pull out her BlackBerry Key2 at 5:45 in the morning. Have she and Samantha been on the outs so long she didn’t even add her to her new phone’s address book? Nope! This appears to be Carrie’s daily driver. As she scrolls through her messages looking for Samantha, we see a series of texts sent within the day. Carrie is clearly not afraid of the green bubble and prefers a real keyboard.
Granted, the Key2 is slightly newer than the iPhone 7, but it runs Android 8.1. Do you remember Android 8.1? The most memorable thing about it was that Google finally killed off its awful blob emojis.
If Carrie is holding out for the next-generation BlackBerry that was supposed to make an appearance this year, she might be in for a world of disappointment. And while she may have another year or so left with her beloved Key2, eventually it’s going to join her PowerBook G3 in retirement. Carrie, it’s time to give in and embrace the on-screen keyboard, or if you’re dead set on physical keys, you might want to check out the Unihertz Titan Pocket.
2013 MacBook Pro
We’re not entirely sure, but we think Carrie is still rocking a 2013 MacBook Pro 15-inch. In 2021! While the 2013 MacBook Pro was a powerhouse when it was released, the base model came with 128GB of storage and just 4GB of RAM; hopefully she paid for an upgraded model. Granted, the only thing we’ve ever seen her do on her laptop is use AOL, Microsoft Word, and Safari, so she’d probably be just fine with a MacBook Air.
Maybe she hated the butterfly keyboard Apple introduced a few years later or just didn’t want to give up MagSafe charging. If so, her wait is over.
The 2021 MacBook Pro 14-inch includes MagSafe charging, its keyboard is incredible, and she could actually use it off the charger—an option she probably hasn’t had for years since there is no way her MacBook Pro’s battery could still hold a charge.
So Many iPhone 12 Models
Barely a minute passes where Carrie isn’t in the same shot as a modern iPhone. Miranda uses her iPhone 12 Pro to see how many minutes she has to wait until the bar opens and she can have her first chablis of the day. An iPhone 12 Pro comes in handy to call Miranda after Charlotte fails to support Carrie as she tries to plan her husband’s funeral. And Dr. Nya Wallace taps her iPhone 12 to the OMNY contactless terminal to pay her subway fare.
Big has enough money for an iPhone 12 Pro Max, of course. Stanford’s husband Anthony uses his iPhone 12 Pro to cruise guys on Instagram at a children’s piano recital. Harry has an iPhone 12 Pro Max as well, likely to field annoying texts from Charlotte, and while we never see Steve holding an iPhone, there’s a good chance he’s using one too since he lives with hearing loss and iPhones tend to work best with hearing aids.
When it comes to the kids, we see Lily York Goldenblatt holding an iPhone 12 Pro. Her sister Rose, a skateboarder and the “outsider” of the bunch, has a plain old iPhone 12 with an OtterBox Aneu case. And while we never see Carrie’s godson Brady with an iPhone, we can safely assume he has one and is using it to sext his girlfriend. You get the idea.
We see a lot of people just clutching their iPhones, but you rarely see people actually talk on them or even use them. Big drops his in the shower, just out of reach, and when Carrie calls Miranda in distress (instead of calling an ambulance!), Miranda’s iPhone sits on the nightstand while Steve passes her the cordless phone. In fact, the only people we see talking on their iPhones are Dr. Wallace and her partner Andre.
If you just want to hold your iPhone, any of these models are great choices. If you plan to actually use your phone though, the iPhone 13 is our top pick. The iPhone 13 Pro is great for gamers and those who want a display with a 120Hz refresh rate. Serious smartphone photographers and videographers should pick the iPhone 13 Pro Max. If you’re shopping for a kid, go for the iPhone SE or iPhone 12.
MacBook Air M1
Carrie’s new boss and podcast cohost, Che, uses a perfectly practical computer, the MacBook Air M1. Certainly Carrie saw the razor-thin laptop without a charger that sat in front of her for at least a half hour and, if I had to guess, because that show seemed just boring enough to be one of those podcasts that rambles on for at least 90 minutes. Did she think “Wow, look at that simple and lightweight laptop that’s working without a plug? Maybe I should get one instead of hauling that decade-old boat around the apartment,” or maybe she’s just the type that will drive it until the wheels fall off.
Apple Watch Series 6
Although we don’t see Carrie in the same frame as anyone with an Apple Watch, she has to know they exist, if for no other reason than the fact there’s a tray of Apple Watch straps in the Hermès boutique. And if anyone needed an Apple Watch in this series, it’s her husband. But instead of strapping on an Apple Watch to monitor his heart rate before hopping on his Peloton, we see him riding with a Piaget or some other expensive luxury watch.
Perhaps it’s because the Apple Watch still has a bit of a nerd factor, but the only people we see wearing them are Dr. Wallace and her partner.
Although we’d probably upgrade to the Apple Watch Series 7 for its bigger screen, Apple’s watch can be a lifesaver. It tracks health habits, has an EKG feature, will alert you when it notices abnormal heart rhythms, and can even let your loved ones know when you’ve fallen down.
Without giving too much away ( BuzzFeed has all the spoilers), Mr. Big becomes a Peloton devotee during the pandemic, and loves taking classes with the instructor Allegra. As Carrie heads out to a piano recital, Big decides to stay home to complete his thousandth ride, which ends with a major plot twist that changes the trajectory of the entire series. Not exactly positive product placement for Peloton.
We still think the Peloton Bike+ is excellent for working out at home, but the episode serves as a good reminder to wear a smartwatch like the Apple Watch Series 7 to monitor your heart rate, and to have a chat with your doctor before you start a strenuous exercise regimen.
Originally published at https://www.pcmag.com.