Steve Jobs’ last hurrah in the iPhone 5 a success
Last weekend brought the release of the last product that Steve Jobs had a hand in –the iPhone 5.
When the iPhone 4 was released in the summer of 2010, it was hailed as the best, cleanest, most beautiful smartphone on the market. So how does a company grow on “perfection?” By making it smaller and larger, at the same time.
“We don’t want to make a new phone, we want to make a much better phone,” said Jony Ive, senior vice president of design at Apple. “With this unique relationship people have with their iPhone, we take changing it really seriously.”
The changes that have been made to the iPhone 5 are subtle at first glance, but can really be felt once the user starts playing around with it.
On the surface, it is noticeable that the two glass panels present on the iPhone 4/4s models have been ditched for an aluminum “slate” backplate.
The two things that become very apparent when picking up the phone is that the screen is larger, but the iPhone is no wider than the previous generation. This was accomplished by increasing the height of the iPhone 5 to encompass a four-inch screen. The second is that the iPhone 5 is thinner than its predecessor. In fact, it is 20 percent thinner than the old iPhone 4/4s.
One thing anyone will notice around campus is that the vast majority of people that have iPhones have a case to protect them. This can make the phone larger and bulkier to handle and use. This 20 percent space-saving feature can really be felt when it has a protective case on, is a more comfortable fit and is not too chunky.
The changes are not just cosmetic; there have been performance boosts under the hood, too– a new Apple A6 processor for added performance, more internal processing memory and the inclusion of a LTE (4G) chip. For Verizon and Sprint customers, the classic CDMA (3G) and LTE (4G) chips have been combined into one, and AT&T customers will see a change from a mini-SimCard to a micro-SimCard.
A major concern for users is that the battery power has increased minutely from the iPhone 4/4s. However, Apple has addressed this issue with their new A6 processor. The iPhone 5 has been designed to be more powerful than the A5 in the previous generation, but uses a fraction of the power to do it.
The iconic white headphones that Apple created an entire marketing campaign around have been redesigned also. EarPods are a hybrid headphone design, not quite outside the ear, but not entirely inside the ear either. They plug over the ear canal in the same way as a rubber stopper does, but they also have small channels to equalize ear pressure and enable the wearer to hear noises around them.
Another major change, as with all new iPhone releases, is a new iOS. IOS 6 looks and is very similar to previous versions. This is because Apple believes in the design concept “if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.” There is nothing more frustrating for an end-user than having things changed around on them; for example, Windows 7 compared to Windows 8.
Really, the only major frustration that early iPhone 5 adopters will face is the disappearance of the previously incorporated Google Apps, the two biggest being Maps and YouTube. Apple has incorporated its own version of “Maps” that now includes turn-by-turn navigation. The YouTube app can now be found in the new Apple App Store.
Customary with all iPhones of late, there are 16GB, 32GB and 64GB versions available from $199, $299 and $399, respectively. As of last weekend, the Apple Store online has a three- to four-week shipping delay for the iPhone 5. I guess this is what happens when they sold more than two million pre-orders in the first 24 hours, a statistic the late Steve Jobs would be proud of.