It is coming to the time of the year again and I for one am looking forward to getting my hands on the iPhone 5. I am not ashamed to say that I skipped on the iPhone 4S. The reason is that I had just bought a new iPhone 4 prior to the 4S?s launch (water damage) and I didn?t really care too much about using Siri. However, with memory running low due to keeping too many family videos on my iPhone. I am ready to hop on to the next iPhone buying bandwagon come September (4 months and counting).
For this post I am going to give a brief rundown on the iPhone and some of its features that have endeared itself to me and what more I will expect from the next installment of the iPhone.
For me, the 2 main draws of the iPhone are the App Store and the iOS.
The App Store
The App store single handedly propelled the iPhone past it competition. Launched with the release of iOS 2.0, on July 11, 2008 the App store allowed 3rd party developers to upload their programs to be used on the iPhone. Software had to be developed within the frameworks or Apples Software Development Kit (SDK) that guaranteed that Apple maintained boundaries in which software can be written (no malicious codes, viruses, etc etc). Developers are free to set any price for their applications to be distributed through the App Store, of which they will receive a 70% share.
The fundamental impact of the App store was that the iPhone became more than a phone. 3rd party developers allowed the iPhone to be a utility device such as a consolidated messenger service, remote control for desktop, iTunes, car alarms, CCTV systems, game center, social networking device, and much much more. Till this day, App Store dominance remains the holy grail of manufacturers keen to own their ecosystem.
The App Store is not the first of its kind, Nokia and others have tried a similar software stores but the difference is that Apps from Apple?s App store worked on the iPhone. If it didn?t it was simply the developer?s problem, not Apple?s.
For me, the iOS exemplifies Apple?s thorough planning and execution with regards to its operating system to make it easy for the user; this includes Mac users. Besides that, they have integrated loads of functions onto the operating system (i.e. Twitter, Facetime etc. etc.), the fact remains that the iOS is easy to use, so easy that toddlers (including mine) have been documented on Youtube using it.
The user interface of iOS is based on the concept of direct manipulation, using multi-touch gestures. Interface control elements consist of sliders, switches, and buttons. The response to user input is immediate and provides a fluid interface. Interaction with the OS includes gestures such as swipe, tap, pinch, and reverse pinch, all of which have specific definitions within the context of the iOS operating system and its multi-touch interface.
Apple has Patented a lot of its iOS features so that anyone else that copies it on their phones will have to face an army of lawyers (globally) and have their sale ceased (at worst) or pay Apple a share of their sales (at best).
There are detractors that want the iOS to be more flexible so there is an option to Jailbreak the iPhone and install unsanctioned software via Cydia ? the unsanctioned App store.
And lots more
Of course there are loads of other stuff like the Retina display, form factor, software features like Siri. However, these are quickly replicated by other phones. To date, the iOS and Apple?s App store are the bedrock of what Apple does well, extremely well.
Moving On ? My iPhone 5 Wish List
Any further changes to the iPhone fall into the category of software and hardware or a combination of both (i.e. near Field Communication for Mobile payments). Software features that are lacking from native iOS will generally have 3rd party software (apps) to fill the void and they usually do so quite well due to the intensive competitive/rewarding nature of the app store.
The iPhone 4S contained marginal changes from the iPhone 4 so I expect something a little more dramatic for the iPhone 5. One pleasant change could be a larger screen ? rumors have it that the iPhone 5 will have its 3.5- inch screen replaced with a 4.65-inch screen similar to that of the Samsung Galaxy Nexus.
A larger screen ? maybe. Better battery life ? definitely!
This in turn will put a bigger drain on the batteries and I am hoping that the larger chassis will also warrant a larger battery (thus incremental battery life). This is something I am really hoping (as with a lot of other iPhone users) any future installment of the iPhone will address; increasing battery life.
It is not that the iPhone?s battery life is bad, but there are just loads to do on the iPhone that drains battery life. I lost an iPhone some time ago and used a Nokia as a temporary replacement; as a result I didn?t touch the phone much except for calls and my battery lasted for 3 days ? something unheard of for iPhone users.
Hello? Is anybody there?
While I am adding things to my iPhone 5 wish list. I am hoping for a better antenna ? dropping calls seems to be a familiar trait of the iPhone that I think it should really do without. The saying goes that the iPhone is a great devices for everything else but a phone.
I don?t expect a lot from the iPhone 5. That?s because I think that the iPhone is already a great product and to better it with more shock and awe features is improbably and asking too much.
However, I do expect Apple to build on the strong and stable aspects of the iPhone 4S for the iPhone 5. I do expect the iPhone 5 that it will have major changes in relation to the 4S. In short, I am hoping that I will be surprised.