The iPhone 5, and its new operating system, iOS6, was shown off by Apple today, in the usual place in San Francisco, with the usual fanfare. The iPhone 5 will go on sale in Australia, US, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and the UK on September 21. So just like last year, it is only a short wait from announcement to in-store, and just like last year Australia and its place on the Greenwich Mean Time line means ir will be the first country in the world to have the new iPhone available to buy.
New Retina display
So what’s new. As expected the iPhone 5 has a bigger screen. It’s a 4 inch touchscreen this time around, still with the Retina display, but with a higher resolution than that of the iPhone 4S. It has 18 percent more pixels than the previous iPhone, an 1136 x 640 resolution. Gained because of the longer screen.
Apple claims that this new screen size, “capped” at 4 inches long, taller but not wider, makes the iPhone 5 easier to operate in the hand. So let the Apple fanboi versus Android fanboi battle of biggest swinging dick in the screen size game begin!
Instead of matching the big screen size of the new big smartphones from competitors, Apple is hanging it dimension bragging rights on having what it claims is the world’s thinest smartphone, at 7.6 mm. That makes the new iPhone 18% thinner and 20% lighter than the iPhone 4S.
The body of the phone is made of anodised aluminium, and looks very much indeed like the leaked iPhone 5 images that surfaced in mid-June.
Inside is a new A6 processor, and a battery, of unnamed size, that provides better battery life than the iPhone 4S. Battery life it seems has not been improved by making the battery bigger, rather it has been gained from greater efficiency of the A6 chip.
The main camera is an 8 megapixel iSight camera, while the front camera is 1.2 megapixels. The ability to take panoramic shots has been added, as the ability to take still shots while recording video. Speaking of video, stabilisation has been improved, and video face detection for up to 10 faces has been added to the feature set.
As has been discussed the last month or so, there is a smaller new connector pin used in the iPhone 5. It’s an 8-pin connector, down from the previous 30-pin. Apple has called the connector Lightning. A Lightning-to-30-pin Adapter will be sold separately to connect the iPhone 5 to your old docks and devices. There’s a couple of issues with this. Firstly, price – $45 for the cable, and $35 for plug. Secondly, will ALL old devices be able to play with the adaptor? Expect to hear more on this matter.
Another much discussed change has turned out to be true, in the newly-designed earphones, called EarPods. Of course. The new earphones have three microphones: one on the front, one on the back, and one on the bottom. Additionally, Apple’s new noise-cancelling tech has been thrown in.
iPhone 5 price and availability
To repeat, the new iPhone, the iPhone 5, will go on sale in Australia on September 21. It can be pre-ordered from the Apple Online Store from September 14.
There will be a choice of two colours, white and silver, or black and slate, and a choice of three storage sizes, 16GB, 32GB and 64GB. Buying the iPhone outright will cost the following:
16GB iPhone 5 – $799 RRP
32GB iPhone 5 – $899 RRP
64GB iPhone 5 – $999 RRP
Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland will have the iPhone 5 on sale on September 28.