Monday, June 14

Apple iPhone 5 review


At the beginning of 2013 I made the decision to move away from my beloved BlackBerry Torch and upgrade to an Apple iPhone 5. The decision was based on a variety of things; apps, the future of the manufacturer and having a better experience with a device that has become something akin to a digital passport. Not being able to upgrade the Operating System and use the PriceCheck BlackBerry app on the Torch became a problem. The other issue that became a headache was the fact that browsing the web lead to BlackBerry errors.

The iPhone 5 is without a doubt the lightest cellphone I have ever owned. You need to be careful with the device in hand as sometimes you forget that you have a cellphone in your hands. It takes a few days to get used to having a larger screen device in your hands.

The Apple iPhone 5 sports an iSight camera that can give any of the point and shoot cameras a run for their money. The camera has a very nice function called Panorama’s that gives iPhone 5 owners the ability to take a 240 degree image. Comparing this camera to the one on the Samsung Galaxy S3 almost makes me feel like I am walking back in time (they feel identical). The iPhone 5 camera  is a very useful point and shoot camera and records high quality videos as well.

The biggest change that I have experienced is the Retina display. The display on the iPhone 5 is unlike anything I have experienced. The iPhone 5 features a 4-inch display designed the right way; it’s bigger but has the same width as the iPhone 4S. So everything you’ve always done with one hand — typing on the keyboard for instance — can still be done with one hand.

The new A6 processor found in the Apple iPhone 5 is the real big feature upgrade. With the new A6 chip just about everything you do on the iPhone 5 is noticeably faster — up to twice as fast compared with the A5 chip. So apps launch, web pages load and email attachments appear almost instantly. This feature makes the device worth it. There is almost no delay when in a good operator signal area but it boils down to how much the operator has spent on towers to ensure the speed. In rural areas the performance is notably down.

There are however a few issues that can potentially be deal breakers:

  • Battery life – On one full charge I have been able to get 3 and a half hours of consistent usage. If I switch 3G on then 3 hours is the maximum amount of usage that I have been able to consistently replicate. So travelling with a charger and cables needs to become a habit.
  • Data usage – Initially it is a bit of a culture shock when you browse your data logs. Having to ensure that you are on a wireless network and not using the operator becomes something of a habit. Surely Apple could make this less painless.
  • If you use multiple email accounts on your cellphone then the iPhone is not the phone for you. The gmail app is great but if I compare the experience to that of a BlackBerry it feels like the dark ages. Why Apple have not solved this yet is rather surprising especially with the fact that the iPhones have now become a corporate device.
  • The Thunderbolt cable and connector – This is something that I think Apple should have reconsidered. The Thunderbolt is not compatible with the previous connectors and thus leads to more cables having to be carried around in your bag.

The iPhone 5 is clearly a response to the Samsung Galaxy S III and does not contain any jaw dropping features. It just works very well. The 4 potential deal breakers should be considered before upgrading to an iPhone 5.

Is there an iPhone 5S coming in March? What are your thought?

Apple iPhone 5



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