John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

Apple’s iPhone 5: “A New Gold Standard” in the Phone Marketplace

After months of speculation and rampant rumor, Apple unveiled the iPhone 5 Wednesday morning, and the device is pretty much as predicted — with a few unexpected additions.

As sources suggested, it is indeed a big step up from its predecessor, the iPhone 4S. Apple VP Phil Schiller boasted, “It’s a new gold standard in the smartphone space.” The device has a larger, four-inch screen, a chassis made entirely from glass and aluminum, a new “Lightning” connector, souped-up innards, and a much-improved eight-megapixel camera.

The iPhone 5 is just 7.6 millimeters thin, the thinnest iPhone yet. And at 112 grams, it’s also the lightest — 20 percent lighter than the 4S. Its four-inch screen boasts a 16:9 aspect ratio and 44 percent more color saturation. That additional screen space provides enough room for a fifth row of icons on the home screen.

It’s also a world phone, featuring support for all kinds of 3G radios, as well as support for LTE, along with two faster flavors of HSPA+. Another key feature: Faster Wi-Fi.

Inside the iPhone 5 is a significantly faster A6 processor and a new battery that exceeds the battery life of iPhone 4S, with 8 hours of 3G talk time, 3G browsing and LTE browsing. Also onboard: A trio of improved mics, a better speaker, and an eight-megapixel camera with backside illumination, f/2.4 aperture, five-element lens, 1080p video, updated FaceTime HD, Hybrid IR filter, a sapphire crystal lens cover, and an awesome panorama mode.

Finally, the iPhone 5 features an all-new dock connector. Dubbed “Lightning,” it’s 80 percent smaller than its predecessor, and is all-digital and reversible. Apple has also developed an adapter for it, to make it compatible with older cords and peripherals.

So, spec-wise, the iPhone 5 seems an impressive device. And Apple is clearly very happy with it. As Apple VP Bob Mansfield said during a video presentation at today’s event, “The level of invention here is beyond anything we’ve ever done.”

The price: $199 for 16 gigabytes, $299 for 32GB, and $399 for 64 GB. Preorders begin this Friday, Sept. 14, with the devices themselves shipping a week later, on Sept. 21.

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