iPhone 5: iSmashPhone Review

iPhone 5 Standing

We purchased our iPhone 5 at launch. This allows us to review the product as a consumer would. We took our time to review it, because having a phone for a few days or a week isn’t enough time to really get a feel for it.

When we first pulled it out of the box, our thought was the same as many others: Wow! This is so thin, and light!

After about 10 minutes of using it, things felt more natural, and we felt like we’ve had it for a long time. You adjust to the weight, now it feels like a phone. Even though it’s light, it doesn’t feel cheap because of the glass and aluminum construction.

We do have a criticism about the build. The one thing, the beveled edge feels a bit sharp. Maybe they could have made it a bit rounder. You can feel that edge. Because it is as a sharp angle, it seems that it’s doesn’t have the same anodized finish as the back and sides. It started out as black, but after a week-and-a-half we can see the aluminum. It’s regular wear and tear, it hasn’t been dropped, but the aluminum is exposed. We would go with the white if we could do it again. Even if you have a case, we see wear and tear this early. Even with it, the plastic case against the aluminum, if you get even a tiny particle of sand between the case and phone, it will scratch the heck out it. It’s made more unsightly due to the fact that the contrast between the black finish and the aluminum is high.

We like that Apple didn’t succumb to the craze of bigger is better. The change is not drastic. they increased the length of the screen. It makes the difference in games and apps.
16:9 ratio widescreen movies and they cover the full screen of the iphone. Games designed, you get more to see, especially in landscape.

For most apps, developers just increased height of the app. A lot of the major differences will be up to developers to figure out how they can make use of the extra space. We don’t see a major advantage other than you see more lines of content.

The way the display is built reduces the distance between the glass and pixels. The resolution is the same, but it feels sharper. It feels like the pixels are painted on top of the glass. You don’t see them as if they are behind the glass (Which they are). That was our “wow” moment, especially when you look at photographs. The contrast is much better.

The camera feels the same, other than low lighting, which, by the way, is software-driven. We didn’t get the purple hue, even when trying to replicate the problem.

Now it takes video in 16:9. Videos were large on 4S. Larger on 5. 1080p video in widescreen. Consider larger storage if you plan to take lots of video. At the very least, be prepared to move stuff over to a hard drive.

Apps load faster. For instance, a game that takes maybe two seconds on an iPhone 4S will load instantly on the iPhone 5. The difference does not seem major at first. You may not notice a huge change, but the second you go back to an older handset, you feel that things have slowed down considerably.

Thin is great, especially for people who wear it in their front pocket. Hipster kids in skinny jeans can use it–easy to slide in and out.

As far as call quality goes, we haven’t noticed any major differences. We rarely use it for making actual calls though. We do suppose the extra mic can help with noise cancellation.

At first, this didn’t seem like anything to cheer about. It could have been that we were using it heavily those first few days as we tested it out and played with features. Once we got used to owning it, and used it like my other phone it was on par with 4S. Charges extremely fast. put it in for about 15 min and you get like 30 percent.

Lightning Connector? We need to move forward. There are adapters for old accessories. We have charging cables everywhere, and we feel like “Oh, I only have one cable now,” but this phone holds a charge pretty well. It’s not a huge deal. Have extra cables? sell them, give them away, whatever. A bit of an annoyance? Yes. A huge drawback? Na.

New maps look great, but they obviously need work. It’s been talked about. Let’s just hope they improve from a usage standpoint.

Nothing feels all that changed in Siri aside from the obvious new features such as sports and movies. Everything else it does feels just like it did last year, including its ability to understand us.

LTE is of course much faster. It’s even faster than our wifi network.


To Upgrade or Not to Upgrade?

If you are eligible for an upgrade, or you must have LTE, do it. If not, you can wait. The resale value right now is as high is its going to be, (it will only go down from here on out) If you want a new phone, you can sell the old one. See how much an upgrade will cost you, you might be eligible for a partial upgrade, might cost might break even when you sell it–regardless of whether or not you have to pay any kind of additional fee.

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