On this edition of the Friday Debate, we discuss the main event of the week in the tech world, the launch of the new iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c. Love them or hate them, Apple has a huge influence on the mobile industry and directly or not, on Android. So, how are the new iPhones changing the game? Do they change anything at all? Did anything impress you in particular at the launch event on Tuesday? Where’s Android now that Apple showed its cards?
Join us in the discussion, vote in our poll, and sound off in the comments!
Apple’s announcement this week left me simultaneously thrilled and disappointed. Thrilled because the move to 64-bit computing is a huge advance and Apple are even ahead of ARM itself in terms of developing silicon that implements the ARMv8 instruction set, kudos to Apple.
But the iPhone 5S is literally what it says on the tin, a faster version of the iPhone 5. In a market where Apple’s rival are selling millions of smartphones in a huge variety of form factors, all Apple can do is release a phone that is a little faster than last year’s model and expect it to satisfy its consumers until late 2014!
As for the iPhone 5C it is only is a $100 or so less (depending on the country) than the iPhone 5S. But it still costs $549. The Nexus 4, which is far superior to the 5C costs just $199 at the moment. Who would buy an iPhone 5C for more than twice the money for only half the phone. OK, the Nexus 4 doesn’t have LTE but there are loads of Android phones which do and are still cheaper than the iPhone 5C (including the Galaxy Note 2, HTC One mini and Galaxy S3 to name but a few). Disappointing all round.
Also it seems Wall Street isn’t happy either, just look at Apple’s share price. Are Apple living in a little bubble where it thinks that consumers will buys its products no matter what it releases?
The Apple announcement of the iPhone 5S, and the new, colorful, iPhone 5C, didn’t feature anything more than what we’d expected would happen anyway.
As far as the iPhone 5S is concerned, there’s nothing more I have to say about the move to 64-bit computing, that hasn’t been debated about by everybody, everywhere, already. While not particularly useful right away, this shift is more about future-proofing the device, and Apple has to be given props for that. The fingerprint scanner/unlock feature, if accurate, should be really helpful, and save people the trouble of having to type in a pass code every time they want to unlock their device. Overall, the iPhone 5S, seemingly just a faster version of the iPhone 5, met expectations. Of course, how high those expectations actually were, is another issue.
The iPhone 5C on the other hand, is a whole other story. The idea may have been good – a cheaper iPhone version “for the masses,” that replaces the iPhone 5. Except, the 5C isn’t cheap by any stretch of the imagination, and the company is way off base with the pricing if their target audience is in fact emerging markets around the world. Unless you don’t like the “boring” black, silver, and gold options, and are looking for something particularly colorful, I can’t seem to find any reason to recommend the iPhone 5C to anyone.
The iPhone 5s and 5c are a mess of contradictions, which seems to reflect Apple as a whole right now. For every really awesome thing they do with these devices, you can find one equally terrible thing they do with these devices. So the question shouldn’t be whether or not these phones are good, but what sacrifices are people willing to make to own one.
For instance, the iPhone 5c comes in various colors and they have a set of cases to create a two-tone color scheme. That’s really nifty. The cases look like Crocs. That really not nifty. The iPhone 5s comes in a new color (gold). However, it’s exactly the same design as last year’s model, which is bad.
The 5c is supposed to be the cheap one and you can get it for $99 on contract -the cheapest an iPhone has ever been at launch. However, the unlocked price is still outrageous. The iPhone 5c is also $200 more expensive in China, a market they’re desperately trying to get into.
The list goes on and on. In reality, there is only one really awesome feature that I commend Apple for having and that’s the 64-bit CPU. Yes, as others have pointed out, all phones will have this tech by next year. However, for the first time in a couple of years, Apple beat Android to the punch on this one and for that they should get sincere congratulations. Whether people want to admit it or not, every Android device that comes out from now until 64-bit architecture is achieved on ARM is going to carry the question, “will it be 64-bit?”
It won’t last forever, but for a short time, when people ask if new Android devices will be 64-bit like the newest iPhone, the answer will be no. For the first time in a long time, Apple has something Android does not currently have. For that, they deserve a kudos. It won’t last forever, but being the only one in tech to have something rarely does.
To close out this rambling, the iPhone 5c and 5s will give Apple a boost in the short term and may be the hottest selling iPhone to date. Unfortunately, this is Apple’s HTC One. It brings some publicity and a boost in sales in the short term, but is not a platform that Apple can use to recover the market share they’ve lost in recent years. It’s a great effort, but they’ll need to do better next year!
The new iPhones left much to be desired. I had to do a double look at the iPhone 5S specs, I couldn’t believe my eyes. Why they didn’t make a bigger display is beyond me.
I feel as if they had their release plan made years ago and they failed to adapt to the market conditions. They did adapt a bit by introducing the 5C but that looks like it is going to be an epic fail because of the price point.
I predict the iPhone 5C to be a total flop and I believe the iPhone 5S sales will be dull.
You were once miles ahead of everyone, others caught up, others then pulled ahead. By this time next year you will be so far behind the pack that it will be embarrassing.
On the bright side at least you have the iPad and make some good computers ;)
The iPhone 5S and 5C are complete disappointments. After the iPhone 5, I was 100% sure Apple was going to get back in the game this year. Guess that didn’t happen.
Looking at the iPhone 5S, we get that same 4-inch screen that leaves so much more to be desired. After all, 5-inch displays are quickly becoming the standard, a standard that Apple failed to adapt to. Again.
The fingerprint scanner? That was cool, but it’s not like it’s exclusive to Apple products only. In just a few short months, we’ll see them on a couple of high-end Android devices.
As for the iPhone 5C, I wanted to facepalm. It looks like a total copy off of Xiaomi’s phones. When Xiaomi makes it the U.S., I’m not going to be surprised when Apple fires up a lawsuit, claiming the Xiaomi’s devices look similar to the iPhone 5C. Give me break, Apple.
I’m not looking forward to what the next iPad will bring to the table. At least they make good computers, though. That’s gotta count for something, eh? Maybe not.
The iPhone 5C is a mockery of all that Apple has stood for in the past so I’m not even going to try and debate about it because I think we can all agree that it’s not worth anybody’s time.
The iPhone 5S on the other hand, is a much more int… er… well, it’s more of a phone. Apple didn’t change up the design, but that’s okay since the iPhone 5 was already a well designed and well built device.
The processor on the new iPhone will be on par with the Snapdragon 600 and again, iOS ran perfectly smooth on the iPhone 5 anyways so that isn’t a huge improvement.
The two big features Apple will be selling the iPhone on are 64-bit and fingerprint scanning. Personally, I’ve never required a 256-bit encrypted smartphone to protect my Angry Birds cloud saves and I don’t really care about the fingerprint scanner either. Sure it’s different, and perhaps if it works as well as Apple says it is it might be worth it, but for me it just isn’t something I require (I don’t even use a passcode).
Next up on the features list is the 64-bit OS. Apple used the words “It took the PC industry years to move to 64-bit, but we are going to do it in one day.” No you’re not Apple. Very few developers will make use of the 64-bit OS and the truth is iOS isn’t an OS which requires 64-bit anyways.
However, if we are looking at the bigger picture we realize that this is the first step in Apple’s move away from intel with its Mac lineup. But if we take a look at the phone itself, well then 64-bit is just a marketing dot point which allows Apple to claim it has done something revolutionary, which it has, it’s just not THAT revolutionary yet.
Battery life is on par with the iPhone 5 and the screen is still at 4-inches large, which I’m fine with, but if you’re going to stick with a small display at least offer the iPhone 5C as your larger display option. People want larger displays, and Apple is missing a large market here.
All in all, the iPhone 5S is a great smartphone. Is it groundbreaking? No, but it’ll appease the iPhone users until next year, when Apple unveils the 4.5-inch iPhone 6, and they start crowing about how Apple’s done it again.
What do YOU think?
Join us in the comments and vote in our poll.