The iPhone 5 is good, but not life-changing, and its new connector has irked many Apple devotees, as they’ll have to buy a new adapter for their accessories.
iPhone 5 reactions from around the web
The iPhone 5 was the last project Steve Jobs worked on before his death last autumn, so this launch had a special poignancy and significance. Apple does, however, have to come up with the impossible with every upgrade – new ideas, ergonomics and revolutionary features.
So does the iPhone 5 have the function to back up its undoubtedly beautiful form? The new connector is the feature getting most of the attention.
Suddenly, six years’ worth of accessories has been rendered obsolete on what seems like a design whim. That’s a lot of gadgets with no power source – docking stations, alarm clocks, remote control adaptors in-car and domestic audio and video systems – they’ll all need new cables now. Lots of tweets attacked this, and the extra expense, calling it “planned obsolescence” and “forced upgrades”.
Tech sites defended the new connector, claiming that it made space for new, better features. The new adapter, though, isn’t likely to set any hearts aflame with its looks, though.
The 4” screen didn’t get much coverage, especially as it’s one of the smaller screens on the market, and the improvements to the camera lens and the faster processor were pretty much taken for granted. A lot of commentators seemed to think that the only real change was the number, and that Apple was floundering in a fast-paced smartphone market.
The initial reactions from the leagues of Apple-o-philes on Twitter looked positive, but not overwhelmed. Twitter was swamped with comments as minute by minute the presentation rolled along.
“Great. Use the iPhone 5 for ten minutes and now my iPhone 4S feels tiny, fat, and ugly. And that’s how they get me every time,” GDGT’s Ryan Block tweeted.
Some were more sedate.
“It’s not as earth-shattering different than the iPhone 4S, to be sure. While the real benchmarks and games aren’t quite available yet, folks who haven’t used the 4S will notice a bump,” said John Biggs of TechCrunch.
Others were more cynical.
“So far it sounds like this is the first post-Steve iPhone and it shows. Apple’s turning into a normal technology company,” Ars Technica and Forbes contributor Timothy Lee tweeted.
It was also striking how a lot of the features revealed at the launch had been widely predicted – there were no great surprises. Last year’s iPhone 4S release saw some shocks (and disappointments), but the omni-leaks around the iPhone 5 had the device bang to rights. This poured water on Tim Cook’s fireworks quite a bit.
Reuters’ Matthew Keys put it succinctly in a tweet: “Short recap of the iPhone 5: Everything you read on the Internet months ago was true,”
Apple acolytes will be overjoyed with their new toy, but it will fail to attract any new recruits. Still, let’s wait to see the sales figures and then think again.