I’m sitting here reading all the crying over the iPhone 4S release and wondering why.
Yes, it’s just a spec bump. People were expecting more, but I’m not exactly sure what. Lets look at the current iPhone 4.
Form factor/design, I personally love it. Yep, it’s extremely subjective. I think it makes the old iPhone 3G/3Gs look extremely outdated. Due to the form factor, there have been antenna issues (although not experienced by me).
Screen, wow, what a beautiful screen. The retina display is unmatched by any other phone out there (and I want something with as small a dot pitch on my desktop). Yes, the Samsung AMOLED screen is very nice too, but not as nice as the retina display in terms of resolution. Brightness, the iPhone 4 screen is more than bright enough (being able to read it easily in full sunlight is more than good enough).
CPU & graphics processor, more than adequate. Some things are a tad slow, but everything runs smoothly.
RAM is enough, a little more would be nice however for more caching in Safari.
Solid State Memory – I have the 32Gb model. It fits all my music, apps & photos. I don’t watch video on my phone, if you do then yes, it may be a little small.
Camera – One of the best quality cameras I’ve seen in a phone. 5MP is more than enough for most people with the exception of bragging rights. Suffers a little bit in low light, but any camera with a sensor that small will due to the nature of physics and how the sensors are made.
Now lets look at what has been improved in the iPhone 4S
Form factor – same as the iPhone 4 except now has two antenna’s and will use the one with the highest signal strength – this should fix the reception issues some people had with the iPhone 4.
Screen – same as the iPhone 4 (would be hard to change the resolution/aspect of this without breaking a lot of apps – the doubling of both width and height with the iPhone 4 was brilliant as it makes upscaling work flawlessly)
CPU & Graphics Processor – upgraded in the iPhone 4S (biggest change)
RAM – unknown (hopefully it’s been bumped to 1Gb)
Solid State Memory – new 64Gb version available, awesome for holding lots of video
Camera – 8MP (not a fan of this on such a small sensor – I get the feeling this is just to have similar numbers to other phones out there rather than trying to increase quality), back illuminated sensor (awesome, any little thing to improve low light noise helps – should gain about 1 stop of noise reduction), new f/2.4 lens (another awesome low light feature – unfortunately on a sensor this small, the depth of field will still be quite large).
So basically it’s just a spec bump and fixes a minor design flaw with the iPhone 4. Looking at what is provided, I’m sitting here wondering what you could add to it (hardware wise) beyond this. Some of what I’ve read around the internet this morning have suggested a larger screen (ok, I’ll concede this one as long as it was released in two versions – the size of the current iPhone is perfect for fitting in your hand or pocket, any larger would be an annoyance to many), curved screen (WTF?), not having the rear being made of glass (the way I see it, you’re just as likely to drop it on the front or back, so cracked glass could potentially result – so I guess that would drop the odds by 50%, but seriously, how come people are always dropping their phones?), iOS is old and stale (I’ll touch on this below) and it’s still slower than the Galaxy SII (from my experience, you don’t need as fast a processor to run iOS as you do Android to maintain smooth use – so why not save battery power with a slower CPU).
When you look at the requests, they’re all really minor. To me, it seems more like that people are complaining about it being called the iPhone 4S rather than the iPhone 5.
Ok, so lets touch on a the big iOS feature announced (the rest have been known for months)
Siri – most awesome feature I’ll never use. Only works on the iPhone 4S due to processor needs (some are speculating that the iPad 2 may be able to run it as well due to having the same CPU). Being able to ask questions of your phone in english is awesome (so rather than asking “what is the weather today?”, you’ll be able to ask “do I need to take a raincoat today?”) if it works as advertised – will be interesting to hear the results over the next few days. Why won’t I use it? To be honest, I feel a bit stupid talking to an inanimate object (unless I’m swearing at it because it didn’t do what it was supposed to).
As for iOS looking a bit old and stale. Ok, yeah, it can be a bit compared to Windows Phone 7 (which personally I find hard to use – my brain works in apps rather than tasks – so I think if I want to do something how do I do it, rather than what do I need to do), Android, yep, their little applets or whatever they call them are pretty awesome. I think they also contribute to why Android is slower than iOS.
iOS is getting a number of features that are similar to Android (notifications being the big one), and some features that should have been there since day one (such as requiring iTunes to set up and play around with media on the device – as a photographer being able to organise my photos on the device itself will be unbelievably awesome).
So what could have Apple added to the hardware to blow people away? I’m not sure. The only thing that I could think of was maybe making it touch sensitive from the back as well. Not sure how it’d be used, but I’m sure someone would come up with something.
0 Comments Posted By Sam