The iPhone 4 set a lot of standards that were eagerly met by the competition, namely those in the Android camp. Though the iPhone 4 still reigns as one of the top selling phones in the world, it is no longer the phone to beat and in recent months it has seen its market dominance challenged by the likes of Samsung’s Galaxy S II and Motorola’s ATRIX 4G.
But with the launch of the new iPhone 4S, Apple hopes to regain the popularity that it once had with the previous iPhone. Can it deliver and is this phone worthy of an upgrade? Read on to find out.
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Specifications of the iPhone 4S:
- iOS 5 operating system platform with over 200 new features
- Instant access, sync and backup via iCloud
- Dual Core A5 Chip
- 16 GB, 32 or 64 GB internal storage
- New Siri intelligent assistant
- Instant photo streaming to all Apple devices via iCloud
- AirPlay and AirPlay Mirroring streaming
- 3.5 inch widescreen multitouch display
- 960 x 640 pixel resolution
- 800:1 contrast ratio
- Capacitive multi touch capabilities
- Retinal display is highest resolution phone screen in existence
- Proximity sensor, ambient light sensors, three-axis gyro, accelerometer
- Touch sensitive controls
- Rear facing 8 megapixel camera
- LED Flash
- Auto focus, tap to focus, face detection, geo-tagging
- 1080p HD video capture
- Front facing camera for video chatting
- Communications and Internet:
- Full web browser support
- Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity
- Onboard GPS for navigation
- Wireless-N WiFi
- Can be used globally
- Social Network integration
Design & Features
The iPhone 4S is identical to the iPhone 4 in the cosmetics department. The iPhone 4S sports the same 3.5-inch, 960 x 640 pixel resolution RETINA display with a fingerprint resistant oleophobic coating though there is no scratch resistant Gorilla Glass technology.
The rear facing camera has seen a bump in specs. Instead of 5 megapixels, it is now 8 megapixels and carries full 1080p video recording at 30fps with image stabilization in both stills and moving images. The front facing camera is still a VGA module.
On the inside is where it gets interesting as the iPhone 4S comes with a dual-core A5 processor with an, as of yet, unknown clock speed, though many are speculating it is 1GHz. Not only that, but the GPU has been enhanced and is now dual-core as well which should give users a tremendous boost in graphical performance.
The iPhone 4S is a world phone and as such carries both a CDMA and GSM radio. The CDMA radio is dual band operating on the 800MHz and 1900MHz bands while the GSM radio is quad-band sporting 850, 900, 1900 and 2100 MHz support. EV-DO Rev. A, EDGE and HSDPA are included as well. Other features include Bluetooth 4.0 support, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, A-GPS, digital compass and gyroscope. Like previous models, the iPhone 4S will be available in 16, 32, or 64 GB storage capacities.
The new Siri feature provides an intelligent virtual assistant that enables you to literally ask your iPhone a question audibly and be answered by your phone. You can ask your iPhone 4S a question such as ‘do I need an umbrella today’ or is there a ‘hamburger restaurant nearby’, and Siri will navigate to and access the app you need for finding your answers. It is by far the most unique and innovative feature on the new iPhone model, and has created quite a stir in the mobile device community.
Being a world phone, the new iPhone 4S will operate not only on the Verizon and AT&T network, but it will also be heading to Sprint (as well as last year’s iPhone 4 models). All three cellular providers will be getting the iPhone 4S simultaneously, October 15th.
With the dual-core CPU and GPU, the iPhone 4S has increased its performance significantly. Apple is claiming single and double digit improvements in such tasks as web browsing, gaming, media and multitasking.
The new iPhone 4S will ship with iOS 5 which offers, among many other features, an improved notification system, something similar to the drop down notification on Android.
Apple is claiming up to 8 hours of talk time on 3G and 14 hours on 2G. Standby time is rated at 200 hours while video playback is a full ten hours and audio playback is 40 hours. Those are some impressive numbers, and if history is any indication of the future, Apple can sure deliver on its promises, especially when it comes to battery life.
Because the screen size is no different from that of the iPhone 4, all the apps built for Apple’s previous Retina display equipped iPod Touch and iPhone 4 will work with the iPhone 4S.
The new automated and instant synchronization features operate beautifully. When you take a picture on your iPhone 4S, it is wirelessly pushed to all your Apple devices via the iCloud functionality, hence all your files, photos, and music are available on all your devices, no matter which one you are accessing. There is no more ‘syncing’ with iTunes. Synchronization occurs automatically over the air whenever your iPhone is connected to a power source. The AirPlay features allow you to stream to your AppleTV, and AirPlay mirroring allows you to stream to your HDTV. All of these iCloud and streaming functions operate smoothly and seamlessly with very user friendly commands.
Last but not least, call quality is said to be much improved and the antenna design that caused so many a drop calls has been redesigned. The phone will switch to whichever antenna is getting the better signal no matter how the phone is being held. This should be welcome news for those people who hated the fact that they needed to use a case to increase cell reception.
Is the iPhone 4S a worthy upgrade? That all depends! If you have the iPhone 4, we wouldn’t recommend it as there are not enough features that warrant a mandatory upgrade. If you have the 3GS or 3G, this is a phone that is definitely worth the upgrade. It has stellar performance, an extremely great display and a price point guaranteed not to break the bank. Just be sure to check out the competition before you decide to commit to it. Personally, we’d buy it and we’re not the only ones who have found the iPhone 4S to be a great phone.