Apple has announced the a new iPhone. Named as iPhone 4S, it comes with dual-core processor, 8 megapixel camera and the voice control feature ‘Siri’.
The phone was subjected to speculations for a long time. Despite the long list of features and improvements over the iPhone 4, the new Apple device however has failed to enthuse the analysts.
Many waited holding their breath for a last minute surprise revelation from the Apple chief executive officer Tim Cook. However, unlike former Apple CEP Steve Jobs, he has nothing.
What surprised everyone is how the “confirmed reports” from noted technology focussed blogs and websites fell flat on their face. Here is the list of five features which earlier were rumored about the iPhone 5.
Practically every Android based handset manufacturer has launched a device with a 4 inch or higher screen size. In order to compete with current front runner Samsung Galaxy S II, Apple was expected to launch new iPhone with 4 inch display. To walk with the industry trends is what everyone expected Apple to do but the company prefers to stick with its own rules.
With new iPhone 4S, Apple continues to offer its “revolutionary” Retina display that has higher pixel density of 326 pixels per inch and 960×640 pixel resolution. Text as well as icons appears crisper and sharper on this Retina display. Apple continues to play safe on its Retina display built using the IPS Panel technology.
No plausible reason was cited on why Apple continued to offer a 3.5 inch Retina display in iPhone 4S. However, last year Apple suffered from shortage of Retina Displays in its supply chain and the company did not wish to see that again. Similarly was the case with iPad tablet where many were sure that Apple will introduce a 7 inch iPad with Retina Display. But that did not happen.
Slimmer and Metallic Design
A popular technology blog had a tongue in a cheek moment when iPhone 4S was shown with typically the same physical architecture as that of iPhone 4. For a layman, there would be no visible difference between the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S if both devices are put next to each other after loading iOS 5.
Web was buzzing with mock-up images of the iPhone 5’s uniquely slim and metallic design. The iPhone 5 was expected to have a slimmer profile like that of the fourth generation iPod and have tear-drop like body design. All of that was just faff-talk in the air. Indeed, a redesign was always welcome but Apple clearly doesn’t want their iPhone to look like their own portable music player — iPod Touch.
Slimmer profile would also imply different internal architecture with new Antenna system. But ceteris paribus, the iPhone 4S has just gained 3 grams of weight amounting to 140 grams compared to the iPhone 4’s weight of 137 grams.
With smaller and less power consuming chipsets coming out next year in second half, we can probably expect the next iPhone to have a different or at least slimmer profile.
Buttonless Front Panel
Many Google Android Honeycomb based tablets have been sporting buttonless front panel interface already. Also, the Android Ice Cream Sandwich is expected to bring a new league of smartphones that won’t even have capacitive buttons since the OS interface will accommodate navigational icons at the bottom.
On the basis of this trend, Apple’s new device was also expected to have front panel without buttons. However, the new iPhone 4S comes with a single button at the front which was though well accepted by the analysts.
The home button allows closing any running application or switch between applications via multi-tasking. It won’t be surprising if Apple tries something new with the next iPhone which is quite plausible. However, only the sneak peek to the iOS 6 early next year can hint whether the next iPhone will have a home button or not.
NFC & LTE expectations
Several reports last year predicted that the iPhone 4S would have the Near Field Communication (NFC) capabilities. Essentially to enable mobile payments, the NFC has several capabilities waiting to be explored. Nokia recently launched three NFC loaded devices in India and those devices will mostly be used for contents transfer in short range.
Apple is one of the leading smartphone seller and several financial institutions were expected to be seen on stage with new iPhone launch. Unfortunately there is no NFC chip inside the new iPhone 4S. May be there is but Apple does not want to talk about it as yet. What’s important right now is building the ecosystem to make best of the NFC related functions.
Along with the world mode chip presence, Apple was expected to support 4G LTE in US atleast with so many Android smartphones coming with the same. However, the major reason for not offering 4G LTE chip on the device would be carry on with the same weight and other dimensions of the iPhone. Also the roll out of 4G LTE is still in process and is not available in US entirely as yet.
To sum it up, NFC and LTE both require some backend ecosystem to exist before Apple actually adds them to their device so that users can make use of both out-of-the-box.
All potential iPhone buyers have been stalling their purchase since last three years in anticipation of a cheaper iPhone model. Four year history speaks for itself that Apple is not interested in smaller or cheaper iPhone models. Instead the company cuts the prices of predecessors and offers it at more affordable prices. Off lately, Apple was expected to announce iPhone 4S and iPhone 5 models but out of them only iPhone 4S was announced.
The Apple iPhone 4S is ground up improvement over the iPhone 4 in terms of core performance and imaging while rest things remain the same. Of course there is addition of the new Siri, the intelligent Assistant that will certainly lure several users to run behind the iPhone 4S. Apple clearly states that the Siri voice control feature is in beta stage as of now. Price of the iPhone 4S remains the same as the launch price of the iPhone 4.
It is safe to carry few out of the above five points to be included in the next iPhone smartphone or may be the one after that.