Over the course of the last four years, Apple has released three versions of the iPhone and the fourth one is now here. So what is all the hype over this device?
Well, to start off, it is beautiful. Apple is known to deliver products that are sleek, curvy and just overall esthetically pleasing. Over the last four years of the iPhone, we went from a titanium backing to a beautifully rounded, glossy black/white backing to the new glass-covered phone.
Yes, that is right. Glass. The new phone has two glossy panels of alumiosilcate glass – the same type of glass used in the windshields of helicopters and high-speed trains. Now you ask, why? Because Apple is trying to push itself as a highly eco-friendly company, and with glass, you get a highly recyclable item. Plus, it just looks really cool.
Next on the device is their new “Retina Display.” This 960-by-640 backlit LCD display makes it the highest-resolution phone on the market. The pixel density of this display is what really makes it cool. The density is at a remarkable 326 pixels per inch – only 78 micrometers across – basically, making the human eye think that there are no distinguishable pixels. The results: sharp graphics and items that look incredibly vivid.
So what’s under the hood of this slick phone? We get the new Apple A4 proccessor, of course! Once upon a time, Apple acquired a little chip manufacturing company, and ever since, they build the chips for their own devices. This gives them a huge advantage over the competing companies, and it is probably one of the biggest reasons I am an Apple fanboy. Apple makes almost EVERY piece in there devices. What does this mean for us consumers? They don’t break as often. With your everyday Dell or HP computer, you run into problems because pieces in these machines were created independently. With Apple products, you get hardware and software created specifically to work with each other – yielding faster performance and fewer headaches.
So you would think that would be enough, right? Well, there is a lot more to the iPhone. We have a brand new 5-megapixel camera that also shoots HD video – not to mention a sweet LED flash that also works as a light when you are shooting video! The best part is, this phone has two cameras, one on the back and a nice little VGA camera on the front, which lets you use Apple’s newest component to iOS4 – Facetime.
With Facetime, you can actually video chat straight from your phone. As of right now, this can only be accomplished using a WiFi connection, and both users need to be on an iPhone 4, but still… how sweet is that?
And finally, that brings me around to the new iOS4 – Apple’s operating system for the phone. The new OS is super fast and works like a charm on the new phones. With older models of the iPhone, iOS4 does not work at full capacity, so to really get a good experience, you are gonna need to get your hands on the iPhone 4.
So what can you do with the new iOS4? Well, for starters, there are the folders. Now you can create folders and better organize your apps – which, let’s admit it, were getting a little out of hand. Next, we have multitasking! About time… Multitasking is such a big tool because now you can stay on instant messanger all day while listening to Pandora and surfing the web! iBooks is now available, and you can read books purchased from your iPad on the iPhone as well. The last thing I will mention is a big one – unified and threaded mailboxes. No more going in and out of your different mailboxes to check your mail. You can now have all your accounts point to one folder and see ALL your mail at once.
There are a lot more items that have been improved by iOS4 – too many to detail here. If you want a full list of some of the new features within iOS4, check out TrustedReviews.
The new iPhone is amazing – an intuitive and beautifully created device. That said, there are two downfalls.
First, the phone is still on AT&T. Now, if you have never had problems with AT&T, that’s not an issue for you. But if AT&T is not really your bag of chips, then getting the iPhone right now might not be the best idea. Inside the rumor mill, there is a lot of talk that AT&T will lose its exclusivity of the iPhone at the end of this year. Supposedly, there are companies overseas working on the iPhone in CDMA format, which means it could start appearing at Verizon or Sprint here in the U.S. sometime next year. Also, the GSM version could find itself eventually on T-Mobile as well.
Second, ever since the launch of the iPhone 4, there has been report after report of the iPhone losing its signal strength if you hold the left corner of it in the palm of your hand. It’s actually quite interesting why this happens. Basically, the phone interferes with itself because the outer frame of the phone creates a looping signal between multiple antennae. The top-left half of the phone’s frame extends the antenna for Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and GPS. From the bottom-left and around the rest of the phone, the antenna for the GSM and UMTS gets extended. Now, there is a little gap between the two pieces and when held just so in the left hand, what do we get? Signal goes bye-bye. The two pieces actually connect through your skin, thereby causing the signal disruption. You can see a more descriptive photo here.
Don’t these guys test this sort of thing? As of today, it looks as though Apple wants to do more testing because they just posted multiple job openings for their “antenna” division. Coincidence?
Although this is all a bummer, you will be glad to hear that even with this issue, purchasing the new Apple bumper for $29 or any other iPhone 4 case will decrease the chance of the two sides meeting and causing signal loss.
Thanks for reading my first blog post. I look forward to reading your comments and seeing pictures of your new iPhone 4!