Apple announced its latest iPhone on Wednesday to little fanfare. While it was an improvement over the iPhone 4S, the changes were incremental. In fact, other smartphone makers are moving so quickly that many smartphones on the market today are much more attractive than the iPhone 5. We take a look at the reasons why the iPhone 5 is likely not a good use of your hard-earned money.
1) No NFC
NFC (Near Field Communication) is a rapidly expanding technology with a wide variety of uses. BlackBerry was the first smartphone maker to widely adopt the technology with the introduction of BlackBerry Tag. It allows users to share links, contacts, pictures and more by simply tapping the phones together. Recently, Samsung heavily promoted the NFC capability of its Galaxy SIII (called S-Beam) in TV commercials during the Summer Olympics.
NFC-enabled smartphones are now used as a credit card for purchases. They are increasingly used as an access card for entry into buildings, since people are far less likely to leave their smartphone behind than their access card. Smartphone makers, along with carriers and banks are quickly expanding the usage of NFC. The fact that the iPhone 5 does not have NFC means that it is obsolete before it is even available for sale.
2) No DLNA
DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance) is an open standard that allows you to wirelessly display your phone’s content (including videos) on your large-screen TV. For example, with the touch of a button, you can wirelessly display a Youtube video onto your large-screen TV. It is enabled on a variety of BlackBerry 7 devices and the Samsung Galaxy SIII, as well as the upcoming BlackBerry 10. During the Summer Olympics, it is a new feature of the Galaxy SIII that Samsung heavily promoted.
3) No micro-USB or HDMI port
The iPhone 5 does not have a micro-USD or HDMI port, which are standard ways through which many electronic devices are connected. This is not only a matter of inconvenience, but also forces the user to spent extra money to buy adapters. For example, the iPhone 5 does not allow you to conveniently connect the phone to a computer or TV, in order to upload or display files. Not having a HDMI port means you cannot easily connect the phone to a TV to display HD videos.
In addition, Apple reducing the size of the connector from the 30-pin to the new lightning connector means that a $29 adapter will be needed to connect the phone to any accessory that you previously purchased.
4) 4″ Screen Size Is Too Small
At a time when the Samsung Galaxy S III has a 4.8″ screen and the Note II has a 5.5″ screen, the iPhone 5′s display pales in comparison. Even BlackBerry, the company that has been slow to adopt large touch-screens, is launching its first BlackBerry 10 superphone with a 4.2″ screen. Apple has simply fallen behind the competition in this area.
5) Outdated UI
There is no doubt that iOS was a leap forward compared to other smartphone operating systems when the iPhone first launched in 2007. However, 5 years later, years of minor changes have resulted in iOS being outdated compared to other OSs. iOS still uses an outdated physical home button, when other OSs have moved on to virtual buttons. In addition, iOS only displays rows of boring icons, while Android displays interactive widgets that are resizable and live.
iOS is based an “open-and-close” user experience, in which the user has to exit one app (by clicking the outdated physical button) in order to open another app. Meanwhile, BlackBerry 10 is completely changing this paradigm by offering the innovative “flow UI”. Multiple apps are running at the same time, and the user can glance at content in one app while using another app. You can also “peek” at your home screen to see notifications while consuming content in an app (e.g. watching a movie).
The iPhone 5 is missing too many cutting-edge technologies, including NFC and DLNA. This makes the device obsolete before it is even available for sale. The iPhone 5 having a screen that is only 4″ and offering a 5-year-old OS results in a user experience that is outdated compared to Android and BlackBerry 10. It is clear to us that other smartphones are a better choice than the iPhone 5.