Apple’s iPhone 5 offers subtle and sublime charms.
It has been more than five years since Apple first upended the world of telephony with the iPhone. With each new iteration of the handset, it becomes progressively harder to wow users. The iPhone 5 tries. It’s thinner and lighter. The screen is longer and sharper. But these sorts of enhancements are getting harder and harder to notice.
The more important changes are more useful than obvious. The iPhone 5 can surf the Web for 10 hours on a Wi-Fi network on a single battery charge. That’s enough to make most Android phone users jealous. It also runs on LTE, next-generation phone networks that often run faster than wireless ones at home. And a faster processor means programs load and run more quickly.
Moreover, the iPhone 5 runs on Apple’s latest operating system for mobile devices. Features like turn-by-turn navigation, better voice search, video calling over cellular networks and simpler tweaks, like the ability to automatically send text messages to callers when a user is already talking to someone else, aren’t as easy to grasp at first as hardware advances. But users will probably quickly become dependent upon them, as they have before.
Image: A woman stands near a poster of an Apple's iPhone 5 at a mobile phone shop in Seoul, South Korea, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012. Apple Inc. began selling the iPhone 5 in South Korea on Friday.