iPhone 5: Simply an incremental update; Keynote lies exposed
Its finally here, the iPhone 5. The world can rejoice now. Although it wasn’t a letdown in the same way that the 4S was, but it was hard not to feel disenchanted with Apple’s presentation and the lack of the “wow” factor. The entire event was boring. What does the iPhone 5 bring to the table that raises the bar? Nothing. People expected greatness. But instead, they got a warmed-over, beige yawn. Yesterday was one of Apple’s biggest fails. Many people are flat out disappointed with Apple’s failure to deliver something great and new. The iPhone 5 is simply an iPhone 4S XL with minor enhancements. Let’s begin:
What’s new in iPhone 5
- Dual Core Apple A6 processor (Made by Samsung; 2x faster than A5)
- 4-inch display, 1136×640 resolution
- Minor design improvement
- 4G LTE
- A bit thinner and lighter
There’s nothing new which the iPhone offers and others don’t. For an iPhone 4 user, the iPhone 5 is a huge upgrade indeed. But not for others. It has the same Retina display, albeit .5 inches taller (It’s not even HD, quirky resolution). The camera is same like in 4S. It has the same amount of RAM as in other Android handsets (less than a few). There is no quad-core processor. It doesn’t support VOLTE (Voice Over LTE). No support for wireless charging, which is a very useful feature. There is no NFC too, which is now becoming an industry-standard all over the world. The phone’s design looks almost identical to the 4S, the only difference is that it’s 0.5″ taller (which means developers will now have to re-write apps to fit the new screen resolution, and I don’t know how those apps will look on a 3.5″ iPhone 4S or older models) and the back is of a different color. There isn’t anything new which didn’t exist before. It’s the same old thing in a slightly newer piece of glass and aluminium.
Apple isn’t willing to make a bold leap on change. Every new version is only slightly better than the previous one. Look at the difference between the Nexus S and the Galaxy Nexus or the Galaxy S2 and Galaxy S3. Those are ground breaking changes.
It’s simply catch-up
LTE and 4-inch screen was something which Apple had to introduce, in order to adapt to the mobile market. The camera features, like capturing photos while recording a video and taking panoramic pics have been in Android and other phones since a year and before. It has even lost some of it’s premium feel, because it’s more lighter now. The iPhone 5’s biggest update may simply be the new processor, which is twice as fast as A5, and it could just put Apple ahead (temporarily, however) of its Android competitors. There are no gotta-have-it exclusive features in the iPhone 5. iPhone 5 should’ve been delivered last year only, instead of the 4S, and Apple should’ve released a much better phone this year. It’s the best iOS handset out there, but it’s not the best smartphone so far.
Remember what Foxconn CEO said? “iPhone 5 will put Galaxy S3 to shame” Now it’s pretty evident who will put who to shame. Galaxy S3 has solid hardware inbuilt, along with a very optimized and ultra-fast Android 4.1 operating system. Android is light years ahead of iOS and there’s simply no way the iPhone 5 can beat the Galaxy S3, not to forget Galaxy S3 has already sold 20 million plus units worldwide and is selling millions of units every month. Even the recently announced Lumia 920 is a lot better than the iPhone 5 – from specs to design to operating system.
Apple could’ve done better
The performance was simply dull this year. There was not a single shocker. They even skipped over crucial information. Sure, the battery life’s now 225 hours on standby, but why Apple didn’t comment on the length of battery life when using 4G? It probably means the battery life isn’t better than what 4S provided. Why didn’t they show the raw speed of the processor and GPU in comparison with other processors and graphics chip, like they did in iPad 3’s event? Why no information on the lightning connector’s synching speeds or whether it will charge the phone faster or not? After going through a repetitious preview of the iPhone 5, they switched to iOS6 and they paced through it so rapidly that it nearly felt bootless. It seemed like the conference is almost over, but Apple smacked a new low when they unveiled the new iTunes – a very poor move from Apple’s part. Why show the new iTunes after showing iOS6 and iPhone 5, which are Apple’s biggest new products? Why not start with iTunes instead and then build up to the iPhone? The new iPod Nano looked too much like the Lumia (maybe Nokia should sue them!). Apple miffed people even more when they displayed the new colors of the iPod Nano, which looked pretty aberrant for a company which has prided itself for it’s simple and minimalistic design. CNET correlated the colors to “skittles.” The biggest improvement in iPod touch? It’s the thinnest iPod touch ever and it now comes in 5 different colors. The new EarPods were emphasized the most and it was the most unique product on display.
Keynote Lies and Misinterpretations
This is the part which I hate the most – Apple lied and misconstrued the truth about few things during their keynote yesterday. Let me underline all those lies and misinterpretations:
1. iPad has 68% market share, compared to others (MI)
The iPad had 98% market share till the last year. Now the share has fallen from 98% to 68%, a -30% change, which means other tablets are catching up. You won’t see Apple talking about this next year. They did the exact same thing when Steve Jobs gave the 2010 keynote. Steve said iPhone had the largest market share, compared to others. Why don’t they talk about that now? Why don’t they talk about how many activations iOS device had compared to Android devices? Same thing happened when they talked about Lion vs Windows 7 adoption rate. It was cheap to upgrade to Lion ($30), whereas you had to pay $100 to get Windows 7, that’s why Lion’s adoption rate was faster, but ultimately, Windows 7 won (Windows 7 has 100x (approx 700M) more users than Lion has (6.5M)) and now Microsoft has set a cheap upgrade price for Windows 8, let’s see how that stacks up against the 7M Mountain Lion installs.
2. Average consumer installs 100 apps (MI)
Unless the consumer has a 32GB or above iPad, there’s simply no way you can do that, unless you’re downloading tiny-sized apps. You obviously store a lot of content on your iPad and that takes space too. You can hardly install 16 games on the iPad, each of which takes atleast 1 GB, so this fact is not entirely correct.
3. iPhone is the thinnest and lightest smartphone in the world (LIE)
That’s a lie straight away! ZTE Athena – 6.2mm and Galaxy Xcover – 100 gms. Looks like they didn’t bother using Google to verify their facts.
4. “iOS is the most advanced operating system in any mobile device.” (LIE)
5. “Macbook Air is top selling laptop in US” (LIE)
No proof. I did a lot of search on Google and none of the sites showed a Macbook Air or Macbook Pro as most selling, neither in US nor worldwide.
- Small Screen: The 4-inch bump isn’t great. Sure, it’s 0.5″ taller than the 4S, but is a 0.5″ bump Apple’s answer to the 4.8-inch Samsung Galaxy S3?
- No NFC: NFC is becoming a standard now. There are countless devices which support NFC but the iPhone 5 still doesn’t have NFC support.
- Design hardly changed: The iPhone 5 has a slightly new design, but it’s not a substantial upgrade. Apple simply made the device somewhat thinner, lighter, taller, and changed the back a bit.
- Outdated camera and optics: Yeah, the camera has some low-light improvements, and a better lens. But who cares? Nokia recently announced the PureView camera, which is far superior than the iPhone 5’s camera and even the Galaxy S3’s camera matches Apple’s offering. What’s the benefit of iSight over Pureview or S3 cam?
- Lightning is annoying: Instead of picking MicroUSB, Apple choose to stay cool and launched a new proprietary connector dubbed Lightning, which is very annoying. You’ll have to spend $29 to buy an old connector to Lightning converter adapter, which sucks.
- iOS6 is good but not a huge update over iOS5: iOS6 does come with few useful features, like improvements to the calling screen, Mail enhancements, etc, but I don’t think it would be a major selling point for customers, as Android can easily do it all, and offers more features and options.
- No quad-core processor: The A6 processor is indeed an improvement over A5 and A5X but dual-core processors are getting outdated now. As requirements of apps and games increases, the processor has to be bumped up significantly. Apple needed to deliver something better, and it didn’t.
- Hidden costs: $29 30-pin to Lightning adapter. You’ll need to carry that single adapter all the time with you in order to use any of your accessories with your iPhone 5. Upset yet?
- Less storage options: Apple failed to give users more storage to allow them to keep that content on their devices. The maximum you can go is 64GB.
- Resolution bump = Redesign apps: Apps built for 3.5″ screen will not display properly on the 4-inch screen of the iPhone 5, which means more headache for developers. Also, apps made for the 4-inch screen might look weird on 3.5″ displays.
The iPhone 5 is a huge improvement over the iPhone 4, and if you’re an iPhone 4 owner then I will strongly suggest to pre-order the iPhone 5 tomorrow. iPhone 5 is a great phone, with a great design indeed. It will sell many million units and Apple will earn loads of money from it. If you’re an iPhone 4S user or any other OS user, I would recommend the Galaxy S3, or the Lumia 920. The scenario’s changed now: Android is faster and better, with loads of features and device options to choose from. The experience is simply amazing. Even Windows Phone is becoming more and more popular now, and you have a assortment of Windows Phone devices to choose from, which pack a ton of features and killer specs. iPhone looks outdated now, and Apple needs to work really hard in order to come up with a radically new design for the phone and operating system both. I am looking forward to the new Nexus and Windows Phone lineup, atleast they don’t disappoint you like Apple does every year.