iPhone 5 vs iPhone 4S: Advantages & Disadvantages

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The iPhone 5 & iPhone 4S are the two hottest Apple smartphones right now. Despite the iPhone 5 being the newer of the duo, both smartphones have their own pros and cons. So which one is best for you? Let’s highlight some of the major differences.

iPhone 5 vs iPhone 4S: biggest differences

The iPhone 5 has the latest hardware and what this means is that it has a slightly larger display and faster hardware, and LTE connectivity. These are the major differences and nothing more. They both run the same software, have equally powerful cameras and great industrial styling.

Of course the iPhone 5 has been redesigned and doesn’t resemble the iPhone 4 & 4S anymore. But this isn’t a major change and it has its downfalls. If you own an iPhone 4 or 4S you will notice how it does manage to look as good as the day you bought it, given that you do take care of it. The same cannot be said about the iPhone 5 as we found out from our test unit. Given its new aluminum styling, the black iPhone 5 is able to show signs of wear in just over a month. So we doubt that it can remain in pristine condition over a 2 year contract as did the iPhone 4S.

On the plus side, the change of materials makes the iPhone 5 look sleeker and moderns. It is also lighter. In fact it is the lightest smartphone in the world. This isn’t necessarily a good thing and depends on personal preference. I personally prefer some weight on my device as it feels more premium. The iPhone 5 feels flimsy to be honest and there have been numerous reports of units being bent when left in the back pocket. Coming from an iPhone 4S, this does take some getting used to as it was one of the reasons I disliked devices like the Samsung Galaxy S3 and even Motorola DROID RAZR. Nevertheless this seems to be the direction smartphones are going and hence the iPhone 5 is how it is.

One thing that does work in the favor of the iPhone 5 is its larger display. You’d think an extra 0.5-inches wouldn’t make such a big difference but that isn’t the case. 3.5-inches was way too small in this day and age, unless you were coming from a BlackBerry, and I am glad to see that Apple has caught on to it. It isn’t as garantuam as the 4.8-inch Samsung Galaxy S3 which is a good thing, but I would have expected at least a 4.3-inch display. Nevertheless this is one of the major reasons I would recommend the iPhone 5 over the 4S. And surprisingly this only.

The iPhone 5 does have more powerful hardware and LTE but unless you are using it there is no reason to upgrade. Games run perfectly well on the iPhone 4S and LTE coverage isn’t ideal for most users unless you’re with Verizon. Additionally, most popular apps have yet to be optimized for the 4-inch display which is very disappointing.

So if you’re in no rush to upgrade, wait for the iPhone 5S or iPhone 6. If you are, I would suggest the iPhone 4S as it come with a lower price tag, has a better fit and finish, has identical software capabilities and you would be hardpressed to tell the difference in the quality of pictures captured by their 8MP shooters. If it was just the screen that you would be upgrading for, then you would get better bang for your buck by opting for the many Android phones out there which truly do offer bigger displays.

The iPhone 4S can now be had for as low as $47 with a two-year contract via Walmart. So it comes as no surprise that is is still selling so well and is running just behind the best-seller of the year, the Samsung Galaxy S3.

Always looking for something new to learn, Mario looks at the internet as one big startup. With him at the helm, continues to head in the right direction of providing high quality and unbiased information on the latest new car models and electronics.