So the iPhone 5 is finally out and even though Apple claims it's the biggest thing to happen to the iPhone since the iPhone, it has left folks a little underwhelmed. We've come to expect a knockout punch, and that simply wasn't there. It is more evolutionary, than revolutionary.
4G LTE: As speculated, the iPhone 5 will come with 4G LTE for high speed Internet. The Long Term Evolution is a 4G wireless communications standard that's designed to provide up to 10 times the speeds of 3G networks for mobile devices that include smartphones, tablets, etc.
The iPhone 5 also has dual-band 3.5G HDPA+ which means those who don't have a carrier with 4G can still access high-speed Internet. Just that it won't be 4G.
Design and Body: So as predicted, the iPhone 5 has a new glass and aluminum two-tone body. Also the device is only 7.6mm unlike the iPhone 4s, which was 9.3 mm and is bulkier. The iPhone 5 also has a bigger screen, 4 inches unlike the previous 3.5 inch version. With the iPhone 5, we're seeing a bigger screen and a thinner body.
Also, the iPhone 5 is compatible with the Nano-SIM. Apple has abandoned the regular SIM card for this one.
Screen resolution: Apple has upped the screen resolution to 1136x640 pixel which comes to around 326 ppi. The iPhone 4S had 960x640 pixel resolution on a 3.5 inch screen. A bigger screen means the iPhone is now in the league of the Samsung Galaxy S III although that has a 4.8 inch screen.
Faster Processor: As predicted, the quad-core A6 chip is here. According to Engadget, Tim Cook claimed,
the chip is to be 22 percent smaller than the A5 and hence more energy-efficient, while at the same time -- he says -- doubling all-round CPU and graphics capabilities. By way of practical benefits, the Apple CEO promises the Pages app (this is Apple's word processor for mobile devices) will load up 2.1x faster than before, while Keynote attachments will hit the screen 1.7x faster.
The clock speed for the chip has not been revealed. Also everyone is still wondering whether Samsung still made these. Let's hope the A6 can compete with Galaxy S III and HTC One X and other quad-core devices.
Camera: This is one area where the pixel resolution is still the same. Apple hasn't given users a 12 megapixel version. The current version is still 8 megapixel, although Apple claims that they've 'improved' the shutter speed. Apple has also added a sapphire crystal lens cover for 'clearer pictures'.
Also there's a built-in panorama mode that will stitch shots together for one 28-megapixel photo. The rear camera doesn't seem to offer anything drastically new.
The Face Time camera or the front camera is now 1.2 megapixel from a previous VGA resolution and has 720 pixel HD video. Good upgrade for video calling.
Battery: Apple has increased the battery life for this model. The browsing time on LTE and 3G is up to 8 hours and upto 10 for Wi-Fi. It also has a standby time of 225 hours. This is a little higher than the iPhone 4S, which clocks 6 hours browsing time on 3G and 9 on Wi-Fi and has a standby time of up to 200 hours.
Connector, Headphones: As expected the accessories have undergone a drastic change. The dock connector is now called Lightning, and is an eight-pin plug. The earphones have also undergone a design overhaul. They're called Apple EarPods now and come with a better mike and remote. The design according to Apple is unlike traditional, circular earbuds, the design of the new Apple EarPods is defined by the geometry of the ear and therefore more comfortable.
What it didn't have: Near Field Communications or NFC which rivals S III and HTC One X have.
The iPhone 5 will be available in the US, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and the UK on Friday, 21 September, and customers can pre-order their iPhone 5 beginning Friday, 14 September. The basic 16GB version starts at $199 with the data plan in the US. No word on when it will come to India.