Monday Morsel - iPhone 5 Review

5 +10

The iPhone 5 was released just 10 days ago and it’s been a hit with users and reviewers alike. I use my iPhone extensive and rely on many features and functions every single day. That’s important to note because while I expected an improvement upgrading from the iPhone 4, what I’ve found is that it’s a treat upgrading to the iPhone 5.

In today’s Monday Morsel, let’s talk about the iPhone 5. Don’t worry! This is not another review or a sales pitch. Instead, I’d like to share the five things I’m enjoying most about the iPhone 5. I think you’ll enjoy them, too.

It’s connected

Talk about life in the fast lane! The 4G LTE connection is quick to respond and everything, including data-intensive tasks like watching videos, is fast. In addition, because of the 4G LTE coverage, the numerous “dead zones” I’ve experienced as a longtime AT&T customer seem to be resolved. I won’t wax poetically about the how and why of this. Just know that it’s noticeably faster and coverage seems to be better also.

It’s fast

Adding to the speed factor is the overall responsiveness of the phone. Apple’s new A6 chip clocks in as the fastest iPhone ever. Apple says it’s up to twice as fast compared to the A5 chip in previous iPhones. Apps open faster, switching between apps is faster, pages load faster, email attachments appear quickly, and there are fewer slowdowns during the day. I’m sure part of this can be attributed to the improvements of iOS 6 software, but the new hardware plays a role.

The new chip also runs much more efficiently so between the speed and the efficiency, you will see a better battery life. I’ve noticed a difference and can make it most days without recharging. That’s a huge plus (and that’s important as extra Apple “Lightning” data cables with the new data connector are not readily available as of yet).

It captures my life

Years ago I relied on a Canon Elph for all my digital photos. As the camera quality improved in phones, I gradually found myself using my iPhone for snapshots. It’s always with me anyway. Some of the pictures left a bit to be desired, but I sacrificed the quality for the convenience. With the iPhone 5, I no longer feel that sacrifice.

The image quality of the iPhone 5 camera is wonderful! In all fairness, the new iPhone has the same 8 megapixel camera that’s in the iPhone 4S, but Apple has worked to ensure it fits better in the phone and that means better image quality. In addition, the camera focuses faster, the “shutter” is faster, and panorama is built-in. So you can ditch the apps you relied on to create panoramas.

It’s beautiful

This isn’t the most masculine observation, but we all appreciate beautiful packaging! The new iPhone 5 is thinner, faster, and lighter. While the extra height (just enough to allow for another row of apps) seems trivial, little things can mean a lot. Some will argue that it’s still not as large as some of the Droids on the market. That’s true, but those big Droids aren’t iPhones. The iPhone 5 is a lean, mean surfing machine. Additionally, the iPhone fits comfortably in your hands which is not something you can necessarily say about Android-based phones.

Beyond case, the display is incredible! The Retina display is bright and clear, and colors pop like never before. If you haven’t had a chance, hold one in your hand and watch a short video. You’ll be impressed by the screen’s aesthetics.

It talks to me

The joke in our house this week is that my wife is now a “Siri Widow.” If you had an iPhone 4S, Siri is no big deal, but if you’re upgrading from an older phone, Siri puts the “fun” in “function.”

I’ve mentioned in older posts that I find Dragon Dictation helpful because it allows me to multitask (for example, to drive and “write” an email). Dragon is great for many things, but Siri takes that usefulness to another level. Now I can not only write the email, I can instruct the phone to send the email to a certain recipient or to add a calendar entry for me. Not to mention, you can ask Siri to tell you a joke or to call you by a nickname if you’re feeling sassy. Winking

Using Siri takes training on both sides: you have to learn how to communicate with Siri and Siri has to learn to understand you. (Heavy accents are a challenge.) Be patient. Siri makes it worth learning a new trick.